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Wind Energy and Power Grids

The power produced by wind farms varies due to the natural fluctuations in wind speed. With increasing con tributions of wind energy in the power supply system, problems regarding its integration arise, for instance with respect to:

  • Managing wind power production,
  • Increasing grid capacity, and
  • Provision of balancing power.

It is generally expected that an increasing need for balancing power will result from adding large offshore wind farms in Germany. To neutralise this effect, it is necessary to adjust the operation of the grid as a whole to the requirements of a modern mix of energy sources.

In order to optimise network management - and thus
the overall economic efficiency of energy supply - it is suggested to feed wind energy into the grid in a controlled manner (»dispatching«). This would:

  • Enable scheduling of wind electricity production (bringing increased reliability of wind energy generation and allowing for intermediate storage of excess energy),
  • Minimise the use of balancing power (minimising the consumption of fossil fuels), and
  • Bring wind power closer to the traditional energy markets