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Can Wind Power Generators be Used to Smooth Out the Power Supply?

nrelThree characteristics of wind energy (variability, uncertainty and asynchronism) can cause problems for maintaining a reliable and secure power system. Demand response, energy storage and improved wind power forecasting techniques have often been described as potential mitigation strategies. The focus of this article is on a mitigation strategy not often discussed and in some ways counterintuitive: the use of wind power to support power system reliability by providing active power control (APC) at fast timescales. APC is the adjustment of a resource’s active power in various response timeframes to assist in balancing the generation and load, thereby improving power system reliability.

By Erik Ela, Yingchen Zhang, Paul Fleming and Vahan Gevorgian, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, USA

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