Science

Vast and efficient ocean wind farms 'could power human civilisation'

Vast and efficient ocean wind farms 'could power human civilisation'

The team claimed farms spread over approximately 3,000,000km- bigger than Argentina but a tiny fraction of the 107,000,000km Atlantic Ocean - could theoretically generate 18TW (terawatts), which they said is equivalent to total global energy demand. At onshore facilities, each turbine weakens the power generation potential of each additional turbine downwind of it in a phenomenon known as a "wind shadow".

"Wind power generation over some ocean areas can exceed power generation on land by a factor of three or more" by leveraging far more atmospheric kinetic energy transported downwards over the oceans than is possible over land.

According to a new study from the Carnegie Institute for Science in Palo Alto, California, open-ocean wind farms could be three times more effective than land-based ones as they avoid the problem of "wind shadow", which is when the turbines' spinning blades create drag and slow the air. The scientists also note that storms over the mid-latitude oceans regularly transfer wind energy down to the surface from high altitudes making a much higher upper limit on how much energy wind turbines can capture than on land.

This property of open ocean wind means operators could pack turbines closer together and generate more than 6W/mon average, the simulations found.

The Shield reunites, set to face Monster Killers at TLC
Also, Bray Wyatt's new alter ego, Sister Abigail, will continue to take form after his promo on Finn Balor last week . Not content to just brutalize The Miz and call it a night, The Shield would return later on to attack Braun Strowman .

The study is based on computer models that compared the productivity of large Kansas wind farms to imagined, massive wind farms erected in the open seas.

North Atlantic winds tap into a huge reservoir of energy created by heat pouring into the atmosphere from the ocean surface. "Will sticking giant wind farms out there just slow down the winds so much that it is no better than over land?" Before the current wind power boom, researchers estimated that wind turbines on land could provide as much as 7 watts of power per square meter. This is largely due to the fact that large amounts of heat pour out of the North Atlantic Ocean and into the overlying atmosphere, especially during the winter.

The scientists added: 'Nevertheless, even in the relative calm of summer, the upper geophysical limit on sustained wind power in the North Atlantic alone could be sufficient to supply all of Europe's electricity'. Rather, Possner and Caldeira set out to investigate the potential of open ocean, deep water wind farms - focusing primarily on the North Atlantic Ocean.


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