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The truths they don't want you to read....

Friday, January 12, 2007

Power cuts

Two major power outages in two days, resulting (in my case) in loss of data, frustration and naughty words being shouted across the room.

Just imagine, imagine, an island where the wind was harnessed to provide continuing subsidised power to the residents rather than one where the wind meant cold, dark nights.

I could hardly hear myself speak above the noise of the wind in the street today, yet some people still seem to think that you will be able to hear the wind turbines over the gale!!!


machaseo said...

I quite agree that it's daft to think that you'd hear the Amec turbines over the gale...but that's because to stop them disintegrating they'd have to be switched off at wind speeds of 50 mph (classed as a strong breeze here), so you'd hardly be likely to hear them! They'd be about as mobile as the Callanish stones and producing about the same amount of electricity (in fact they draw power from the national grid every minute of the day and night, whether they're spinning or not).

It is ironic that at the times when power cuts most often occur, i.e. during winter gales, the turbines would be as much use as an ashtray on a motorbike.

Because of the fact that the wind speed at the height of the turbine blades is considerably higher than at ground level, they would need to be switched off at ground level wind speeds of well below 50 mph...[sardonic] I wonder how Amec measured the operable wind speeds? [/sardonic]

You must have noticed yourself, Angus, that Lewis is very often either becalmed with hardly a breath of wind, or it's blowing a bloody gale, both of which are useless for turbines on any scale.

You said, "I could hardly hear myself speak above the noise of the wind in the street". What do you think it was like 460 feet above Barvas moor? :-)

AIF said...

Angus; I know this is tangential to the point you were trying to make, but have you ever considered an uninterruptable power supply to avoid the loss of important data during power cuts?

Angus said...

Alasdair; the server is protected by a UPS but the desktop machines aren't. This may have to change, or I'll stick a wind turbine on the roof.