By Anton Lang ~
This Post details the daily wind power generation data for the AEMO coverage area in Australia. For the background information, refer to the Introductory Post at this link.
Each image is shown here at a smaller size to fit on the page alongside the data for that day. If you click on each image, it will open on a new page and at a larger size so you can better see the detail.
Note also that on some days, there will be a scale change for the main wind power image, and that even though images may look similar in shape for the power generation black line on the graph when compared to other days, that scale (the total power shown on the left hand vertical axis) has been changed to show the graph at a larger size to better fit the image for that graph.
Wednesday 10 August 2022
Total Wind Power Generation
This image shows the total power generated across the whole day by every wind plant in this vast AEMO coverage area for Australia.
The total Nameplate for all these wind plants changes as each new wind plant comes on line delivering power to the grid. That current Nameplate is 9854MW, and this is from the current total of 76 wind plants.
Note that the shape of this wind power load curve does not follow the shape of the main load curve for total power generation, and that is seen in the image below, the solid black line across the top of the image for that graph. Wind power generates its power only when the wind is blowing, hence it does not follow the actual power generation Load Curve, which is also the the exact same shaped curve as for actual power consumption.
For this data, I have added the times for the daily minimum, and the daily maximum, to show how they do not correlate with the actual times of minimum power consumption (around 4AM each day) and maximum power consumption, the evening Peak. (at around 6.40PM in Winter and earlier during the Summer Months.)
Daily Minimum – 1486MW (12.35PM)
Daily Maximum – 6114MW (8.45PM)
Average Wind Generation – 4392MW
Total Generated Power – 105.40GWH
Percentage Supplied By Wind Power At The Low Point For The Day – 5.5%
Percentage Supplied By Wind Power At Peak Power For The Day – 5324MW of 30370MW – 6.40PM – 17.53% (Mid afternoon Peak with maximum rooftop solar added was 27470MW at 12.00PM)
Average Percentage Of Overall Total Power Generation – 16.94%
Daily Operational Capacity Factor – 44.57%
Wind Power Generation Versus Total Power Generation
This image shows the total power generated from all the wind plants in this AEMO coverage area, and compares it to the overall total generated power from every source of power generation, which is the black line at the top of the graph. Wind power is the green coloured area, along the bottom of this graph.
While the green colour in this image looks to be a different shape to the graph above, keep in mind here that the scale is completely different, and that green coloured Wind total is the same as for the image shown above, only with the scale changed so it can fit onto the graph.
- Finding Wind Power Average – On the graph, there are 25 hourly time points, starting with midnight and finishing with midnight. I have added the total at each of those hourly time points together, and divided the resultant total by 25 to give an average in MegaWatts. (MW)
- For total power in GWH, multiply the average daily power by 24, and then divide by 1000.
- For the Capacity Factor, that is calculated by dividing the average wind generation by the current Nameplate and then multiplying that by 100 to give a percentage.
Comments For This Day
(With all the images shown here, they are sized to fit the page. If you click on the image it will open on a new page and at a larger size so you can best see the detail)
I’ll explain that anomaly you plainly see a little further down.
Wind generation was higher on this day than it was on the day before, and the average for this day of 4392MW gave wind generation a daily operational Capacity Factor of 44.6%, and that was fourteen percent higher than the year round average. Wind was in a rising phase heading towards its high for the day at the usual time of the evening Peak of maximum power consumption, and at that time, wind was delivering 17.5% of all the generated power from every source. That dip meant there was a deep low for the day, and that accentuated the difference between the low for the day and the high, and on this day, that gap was a very large 4628MW.
Okay, back to that dip you see on the upper graph for wind generation, and here I have added the time indicator at 1.35PM, and going back across the page to the left side vertical axis, you can see that just as the huge power loss started, the total from wind generation was 4122MW. Over the next 15 minutes, to that first step, wind generation lost 1836MW, and to the bottom of the dip, after 45 minutes, the total power loss from wind was 2636MW.
However, that’s only part of the loss. On the image at right, I have added the solar plants, the red colour. (not rooftop solar, just the large scale solar power plants) For some reason I cannot find anywhere, these two major renewable power sources failed. It was a not a failure in just the one area as wind plants in all the States were affected, and that was the same for the solar plants as well. You can see that failure time point here as well, same time, 13.35PM, and both renewables dropped 3600MW in that first 15 minutes and then 4700MW in 50 minutes, and it took another hour for them both to recover. The total duration of that power loss was just under two hours.
So, okay then, what happened as this pretty catastrophic loss of power, and while it may not seem all that much when you look at these bland graphs, that loss was almost 17% of all power being consumed in Australia at that time.
Well, as is always the case, the ‘first responder’ was the power generating source which can deliver its power at extremely short notice, and that is hydro power, and again, that proved to be the case again. See the image at right, well this is for all hydro power plants in that same coverage area where all the wind and solar plants failed. Again I have added the time indicator at the same time, 1.35PM, and the graph is larger in depth as I have only ticked the boxes of the power plants which ‘came to the rescue’ here. There were only three hydro power plants involved in this recovery, Tumut Three, Upper Tumut, and Murray One and Two, which are always listed at just Murray. All these three plants are part of the Snowy Hydro Electric Scheme in the Snowy Mountains on the border of New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria. Tumut Three is a pumped hydro plant, Upper Tumut is two underground power stations also on the Tumut River, and the two Murray plants are further South on the Murray River. In all, there are 24 small hydro generators at these plants, and not all of them were needed at this time, just enough to cover the major loss at the time, and keep in mind here, that as the downslope of the loss was taking place, then the upslope of power delivery from these hydro Units was taking place at the same rate, wind and solar down, and hydro up.
As you can see, there is an all but vertical rise in power delivery, and in fact, that total power coming on line from the start of the failure at 1.35PM, and all but to the top of that spike (that kink jut below the top of the spike) well, that ‘new’ power was 2200MW delivered in ten minutes and a further 200MW to the top of the spike. And, as is almost always the case, that power was only needed for a short time duration, and it was only required for an hour and a half.
Okay, I have included this next graph at the right, just to show you something. For so long now, in fact so long that it has become a ‘truthful fact’ that everybody knows, because they have been told so often ….. the fact that coal fired power is pretty much useless because it cannot ramp up and down at short notice. Needless to say, coal fired power ramps up and down twice each day by around 4500MW to 5000MW, every day, which sort of shoots down that ramping argument anyway.
Again, this graph is larger as it shows just the ticked boxes for all those coal fired Units in the two States.
However, look at what happened here when we had this failure of wind and solar power. Now, while that usual first responder was hydro, look at the graph at right, and this is for coal fired power in two States NSW and Queensland. Now, because The scale is different (because there is a huge amount of coal fired power compared to wind, solar and hydro) then that rise seems to look so much smaller. Also here, I have added the same time indicator at 1.35PM, and those 37 Units at all those coal fired plants in the two States, well all of them immediately ramped up just a little bit extra from each one and in the next ten minutes, they were delivering an extra 600MW into the grid to help with that recovery, as you can see from that small spike.
So, while hydro came to the immediate rescue, it seems that those ancient unreliable useless coal fired plants also assisted in the recovery of the failure of wind and solar. Sort of like the opposite to what you are being told, eh!
Anton Lang uses the screen name of TonyfromOz, and he writes at this site, PA Pundits International on topics related to electrical power generation, from all sources, concentrating mainly on Renewable Power, and how the two most favoured methods of renewable power generation, Wind Power and all versions of Solar Power, fail comprehensively to deliver levels of power required to replace traditional power generation. His Bio is at this link.
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