http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.00Change: 0.16
R/$ = 11.86Change: 0.26
Au 1213.47 $/ozChange: 6.76
Pt 1158.50 $/ozChange: 4.50
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Apr 23, 2004

Klipheuwel shows the way in renewable energy

Back
Engineering|Africa|CoAL|Eskom|Gearboxes|Generator|Generators|Industrial|Lighting|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Resources|System|Systems|Turbines|Water|Africa|Energy|Maintenance|Systems|Wind Energy|Environmental|Power|Turbines|Water|Operations
Engineering|Africa|CoAL|Eskom|Gearboxes|Generator|Generators|Industrial|Lighting|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Resources|System|Systems|Turbines|Water|Africa|Energy|Maintenance|Systems|Wind Energy|Environmental|Power|Turbines|Water|Operations
engineering|africa-company|coal|eskom|gearboxes|generator|generators|industrial|lighting|renewable-energy|renewable-energy-company|resources|system|systems-company|turbines-company|water-company|africa|energy|maintenance|systems|wind-energy|environmental|power|turbines-person|water|operations
© Reuse this Most countries, including South Africa, currently rely on fossil fuels, such as coal, oil and natural gas, for energy.

These are nonrenewable, meaning they draw on finite resources that will eventually dwindle or become too expensive or environmentally damaging to retrieve.

In contrast, renewable energy resources, such as wind and solar energy, are constantly being replenished and will never run out.

Renewable-energy technologies are clean sources of energy that have fewer environmental consequences than conventional energy technologies.

Eskom has a long association with the implementation of renewable-energy technologies.

Thousands of rural schools, clinics and houses have been supplied with electricity from solar power, while extensive research has been conducted to diversify Eskom’s grid-connected supply. This is achieved through the cost-effective implementation of renewable energies such as wind, solar energy and hydroelectric power.

Wind turbines, like windmills, are mounted on a tower to capture the most energy. The kinetic energy of wind is used to turn a wind turbine to generate electricity.

The most advanced programme that Eskom’s research development and demonstration division is currently involved in is the R42-million Klipheuwel wind-farm research facility, near Cape Town, reports its research operations manager Dr Louis van Heerden He tells Engineering News that it is a 3,16 MW facility that is built around three different types of turbines. The Klipheuwel research station houses two Danish Vestas and one French Jeumont unit.

According to Van Heerden, the Danish units incorporate conventional induction generators with gearboxes, whereas the French unit has a permanent magnet synchronous generator without a gearbox.

Research on the potential of wind energy as an electricity-generating option is being conducted, as well as an evaluation of different wind-based technologies, and their economic viability.

“The aim of this demonstration facility is to introduce and expose the technology to the country, making people aware of how the facility works and what benefits it could provide if the plant is commercialised.

“Since the facility was commissioned in February last year, it has had 803 escorted visitors at the plant,” comments Van Heerden.

Eskom is currently analysing how the different types of technologies perform under South African conditions.

The research programme at the plant will run for three years. To date, it has noted that the two Danish units at the plant are more commercial and, as a result of this, they have experienced fewer teething problems than the French unit, he explains. The ongoing research at the plant is looking into turbine operational and maintenance issues, which are critical to understand when looking at any future forecasts or future planning for this technology.

Other ongoing research topics include looking at the vibration in the structure, the conditioning monitoring and the voltage control of the plant.

The Klipheuwel wind-farm has a total capacity of 3,16 MW and is expected to generate at a load factor of 20% to 26%.

Wind generators have an expected lifetime of at least 20 years, and the largest wind turbine at the plant, the Vestas V66, has the capacity to supply about 200 First World homes, or as many as 1 000 homes in deep rural areas, explains Van Heerden.

He says that, because the unit generator creates power from wind pressure, the voltage generated is not always constant and, therefore, it is not a stable supply of energy.

In an attempt to overcome this problem, Eskom installed a power quality device system, that was developed by the utility, which regulates some of the output generated by the turbines. This system is currently being tested at Klipheuwel.

After the three-year research has come to an end, the plant will either be handed over to Eskom Generation, which is currently the operator of the plant, to be operated as a commercial facility, it could be decommissioned or moved, Eskom could run it in partnership with another party, or it could be sold, acknowledges Van Heerden. These are all options; the final decision will be made based on the findings of the research.

Meanwhile, ocean waves are one of the world’s most abundant sources of renewable energy, essentially comprising a concentrated form of solar energy.

Ocean energy is energy that could be derived from waves, tides, currents or varying thermal layers in the ocean.

The ocean covers more than 70% of the earth’s surface, making it the world’s largest solar collector. Van Heerden notes that Eskom completed an ocean-energy-resource assessment in 2002.

“The study concluded that South Africa has a sufficient ocean resource available to explore this option further.

“Currently, a technoeconomic study and a technology evaluation are being performed. This study aims to identify those ocean energy conversion technologies that should be researched further for possible application in South Africa,” says Van Heerden.

Most renewable energy comes either directly or indirectly from the sun. Sunlight, or solar power, can be used for heating and lighting buildings, generating electricity and a variety of other commercial and industrial uses.

Van Heerden explains that there are currently about five solar-power technologies being researched around the world.

These include photovoltaic systems, concentrating solar systems, passive solar heating and daylighting, solar hot water and solar process heat, as well as space heating and cooling. He says Eskom is investigating two main groups of systems, namely solar and solar-thermal technology options.
Edited by: renay de
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Electricity News
Police have a dispersed a group of striking workers who attempted to block a road at the Medupi power station near Lephalale on Tuesday morning, Limpopo police said. "A group of striking workers attempted to block the road, however they were dispersed by police,"...
The first part of power utility Eskom’s maintenance drive has been completed without the parastatal having to implement load-shedding over the weekend. The State-owed utility on Friday embarked on a three-day maintenance “festival” to improve the performance and...
Article contains comments
South African mining and energy adviser Ted Blom has raised a litany of concerns about the state of power utility Eskom and has warned of runaway costs and shortfalls in coal and water, as well as rail capacity. Blom was surprised by the recent buoyancy shown by...
Article contains comments
More
 
 
Latest News
Updated 4 hours ago A number of foreign nationals that were displaced as a result of xenophobia-driven violence across Johannesburg and Durban’s inner city and township areas have started returning to their adoptive communities, the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on Migration...
Updated 5 hours ago South Africa will likely raise its 2015 maize output forecast after rains in crop-producing areas boosted production and yields, a survey of trading firms by Reuters showed on Tuesday. The government's Crop Estimates Committee (CEC) has previously forecast that the...
Updated 5 hours ago The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Organisation and Amazon Web Services (AWS) have partnered to launch the ‘AstroCompute in the Cloud’ grant programme to attract innovative tools and techniques to process, store and analyse the global astronomy community’s vast amounts...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
Sappi Southern Africa CEO Alex Thiel
Forest products group Sappi has confirmed the selection of its 25 MW biomass-to-power project, to be erected at its Ngodwana mill, in Mpumalanga, as a preferred bidder under the South African government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement...
Information and communications technology (ICT) distributor DCC is making Windows- and Android-operating systems tablets available through retailers and education equipment suppliers to provide school children with affordable, high-performance education tools. The...
Another cement manufacturer is set to enter the Ugandan market, raising hopes that prices will come down and spur growth in the construction industry. National Cement, a Kenyan manufacturer, has unveiled plans to invest $195-million in a new manufacturing plant in...
With growth rates exceeding that in the developed world – at an average of between 4% and 5% between 2002 and 2014 – African countries provide investors with ample reason to tap into booming consumer demand says Manufacturing Circle executive director Coenraad...
The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) Business Confidence Index (BCI) decreased by 3.7 index points month-on-month to 89.1 in March.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96