Siemens Performance on Renewable Energy Market

Guest post by Maria Kruk, an author for Patentsbase.com

Siemens is one of the companies, which are focused on the innovative fields, as well as on markets with a good potential for expanding. These features are essential for renewable energy industries. In this context, Siemens finds it as an attractive market to invest money and technologies. Production of renewable energy and electricity became one more industry the company works in, along with electronics, IT technologies, medicine and urban infrastructure. Siemens is interested in specific branches of renewable energy sector, related research and innovations, which, by the way, receive nearly 4 billion dollars annually. Energy-saving technologies are of big priority, being the company’s goal all over the world.

Siemens Wind Power is the most advanced alternative energy branch of the company. About 7000 wind power generators are operated globally with total capacity of 6000 MW. The statistics features that such energy production can provide for 7 million households and prevent 8 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually. Especially, Siemens is focused on European countries, putting its projects into operation in Denmark, Germany, Northern Ireland, etc. Much of attention was paid to company’s innovative project, executed in collaboration with Hydreo, – floating wind power stations that can alter their location in order to get matching air flows. In addition, Siemens is engaged in construction of such wind farms as Teesside (UK), Cape Wind and Block Island (USA), Meerwind Sud/Ost (Germany), Horns Rev II (Denmark) and may others.

Hydro power production is one more industry Siemens is interested in. To provide some details, construction of hydro power stations is more expensive, but energy prime cost is lower. Therefore, energy demand outranges company’s expenses on hydro power projects. Since late 1970s hydroelectric power has become one of the investment items of the company. To be more précised, Siemens AG started to supply generators to the biggest hydro power station in the world – Itapúa, on Brazilian-Paraguayan border. To date, Siemens deals with technological developments for small hydropower plants up to 30 MW, as well as with reconstruction of existing power plants. In fact, in recent years Russian rivers alerted an attention of company’s executives. Depending on the power plant, Siemens offers to equip the turbine with adjustable or fixed blades of all currently available designs. Technologies introduced by the company ensure a high safety margin of small hydroelectric power stations and low operating costs.

Naturally, solar power is a crucial part on renewable energy market, but not for Siemens as once could guess. The key thing is that solar power was much of company’s priority during decades, until the 2012, when Siemens refused to succeed on the solar power market. In particular, the company refused to manufacture solar panels m and to convert solar energy into electricity, mainly because of price pressure on the market. Since then wind and hydro power remain primary renewable energy targets of Siemens, which are promised to provide 30 per cent of energy worldwide by 2030.

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Multi-directional wind turbines for the home. Vertical Axis Wind Turbine VAWT

Vertical Axis Wind Turbines VAWT.  These have been around for a while but no one design or company has really taken off.

The most efficient ones are generally shaped like a helix so that it spins no matter what direction the wind is blowing.  One significant problem with the standard large windmill design is they only work well if the wind is blowing hard and steadily in one direction.  There are places with those conditions but they are not exactly abundant.

The VAWT work on a different kind of wind. They could be effective on a small scale and could be owned privately like solar panels.  The other probably more untactful use would be to put them on the top and sides of skyscrapers.

As anyone who has stood on a NYC rooftop can tell you, the wind coming up from the street is srong and constant so attaching turbines could ease the electric demand where it is most needed.

Kite Power

kite-power2

So I will have to do some more research on the physics of wind generation but I was under the impression that the capture of wind was perfected by sailors in the last few centuries.  Who says windmills as they are designed today is the best way to harness the wind’s energy?

We are about to put some significant investment into wind energy and I wonder if it really is the best way or just tradition.

http://nextbigfuture.com/2007/10/kitegen-follow-up.html

The Wind Farm Debate pt 1

offshore-windfarm

I am from Boston and my family has a place in Buzzard’s Bay, near Cape Cod.  The debate around placing an offshore wind farm in the Nantucket sound has been a hot topic for many years in the area.  As in most debates over public policy, the spectrum of opinions runs along a socioeconomic axis.

The more affluent do not want any windmills cluttering their view of the “pristine” ocean and the people who live in the area year round would love a drop in the electricity bills.  The problem with the pristine ocean is that it is full of garbage and chemicals.

I am twenty-four years old and I can clearly remember a time when you could walk down to the ocean near my house and pick up as many mussels, oysters, and clams as you wanted.  Now there is nothing on the shore except barnacles and seaweed.  You could hit a deer by accident easily because there were tons of them all around. Now you would be lucky to see one all summer.  Greenbrier, poison ivy and other resilient horrible weeds have taken over from roses and blueberry patches.  The point is that toxic chemicals and invasive species have done far more damage to the pristine ocean than a wind farm could ever do.  This is in addition to the fact that wind farms might lessen the oil barge traffic that regularly runs through these waters, even in winter.

The opponants of wind farms need to understand that how the world looks needs to change in order for us to survive and prosper.  If we decide to cut down trees, then we will have to look at windmills instead.

codman-point

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