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An appraisal of wind energy conversion systems for agricultural enterprises.

Macmillan, Susan


Susan Macmillan


G.S. Saluja

S.H. Baxter

I.G. Mackenzie

P. Robertson


A detailed wind prediction model is developed, which predicts wind regimes and energy outputs from wind turbine generators at locations that are remote from sites where long-term wind data is available. The model accounts for the local, directional influences on the wind flow of topography and surface characteristics. The model for the validation runs performs well and predicts energy outputs over several months to generally within 7% of the actual energy outputs. Experience is described of a 60kW wind turbine generator connected at a pig farm in the North-East of Scotland, with respect to the wind regime, performance, farm energy consumption pattern and overall economics. Long-term economics are assessed by simulating different scenarios of wind turbine generators connected at farms. The different scenarios account for a realistic range of wind regimes, wind turbine generators, farm types and tariffs, all applicable in particular to the NE of Scotland but valid for many other areas in the UK. It is concluded that the main factors affecting economic feasibility of grid connected wind installations at farms are wind regime, local utilisation of wind generated electricity and availability of capital grants. Other factors include the choice of tariff and maintenance costs. The wind prediction model is shown to be a useful tool in assessing economic feasibility of wind installations on farms as both the wind regime and utilisation are dependent on accurate wind speed predictions.


MACMILLAN, S. 1989. An appraisal of wind energy conversion systems for agricultural enterprises. Robert Gordon's Institute of Technology, PhD thesis. Hosted on OpenAIR [online]. Available from:

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Jun 21, 2022
Publicly Available Date Jun 21, 2022
Keywords Wind turbines; Wind energy; Rural energy usage; Rural energy consumption; Scotland
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