Chapter 4.10.2:Zero Hours at Kingsbridge

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Producing no power is more of a rubbing salt into a wound.  Just when you need power the most, there sits idle millions of dollars in wind turbines.  All doing nothing.  The worst time for the number of zero output is the summer.  Thus we will look at what happened during the summer of 2009 for Kingsbridge, the worst location for the number of zero hours.

This is the output in Hourly Capacity Factor for Kingsbridge:

As you can see a large number of very tight spikes during June to Aug of 2009.  The numbers on the X-Axis are total hours starting from June 1, 2009.

Let’s focus on a period of zero hours, there are lots of them, some lasting more than 7 consecutive days in a row.  This is June 24 and 25 of 2009 with demand included:

Notice nothing at all until 11pm on the 24th, with a quick spike up then back down the next day.  This means that on the 24th some other power source provided the demand, whereas that other power source was curbed back for those few hours that wind managed to squeak out some power, than after noontime, that other source was back top supplying the demand.

Let’s look at a longer stretch:

This is an eight-day period between two spikes in HCF where zero hours dominates.  Notice the narrow, only a few hours long, spikes in output.  The red line is the max temp for each of those days in Ottawa (indicative of the rest of Southern Ontario).  Notice the changes in temp as cold front system, then warm from system moves through.

This is another example of one of those frontal systems:

As a low pressure system moves through, they will have a warm air mass on the front end, with a cold air mass on the back end.

So in the graph of wind output for Aug 19 to 24, one of these systems came through Southern Ontario.  The inside of the low, the “eye”, will have almost no wind, which can be seen to start at 5Pm on the 21st, with the cold front starting to appear by 10am on the 23th.

So what we have is clear evidence that wind in the summer is entirely dependant of when low pressure systems move through, and the intensity of the output will be directly dependant on the intensity of the low pressure system.   This is why the overall summer output graph at the top has such narrow spikes.  Those are all low pressure cells moving through the province.


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