When most people think of wind turbines, they imagine the large megawatt systems, instead of medium scale wind turbines which are much smaller and more economical for landowners, farmers and smaller investors.
‘Medium wind’ is typically thought of to be roughly in the range of 50kW – 300kW wind turbine systems. They are very different than the large MW systems, and should be viewed as such. They are large enough to best take advantage of feed-in-tariffs government programs, yet still affordable for individuals who wish to invest in wind energy. Naturally, medium scale wind turbines also offer a faster payback period than the larger MW counterparts.
Some other benefits to owning a medium sized wind turbine are the flexibility of location, less regulatory requirements and speed of installation. It is obviously much easier to find a suitable location for a 40m tall wind turbine that is far enough away from dwellings than it is to find one for a 150m tall turbine. Additionally, it is easier to get permission for smaller turbines, which oftentimes require less certification to install. These smaller turbines are also easier and faster to install, and require less equipment (like the Orenda Skye™ which does not even require a crane!)
Medium scale wind turbines are currently very popular in the UK, typically used by farmers who take advantage of the FiT program to supplement their agricultural income. It is an investment that has a quick payback period, and a good return on investment. These smaller wind turbines make it easier for individuals to ‘get in on the game’ when it comes to renewable energy, reaping the rewards of generating their own electricity and making a profit in the process.
So what do you think of when you hear the term ‘medium scale’ wind turbines? Leave your comments below!