Wind power in Brazil-The wind potential is 250.000 MW

The new wind map will be issued the next year. Based on the calculations made by CEPEL (Energy Research Center), the potential is bigger than 250.000 MW. This is almost two times more than the calculations made in 2001 with the potential prognoses 143.000 MW. In that time the technology was limited by the use of wind in 30 – 40 meters above the surface.

As the researcher of CEPEL explains, the study is counting with the potential in the altitude more than 50 meters above the surface, with the relief and rigorousness of every region. The potential is not a complete number yet, due to missing calculations depending on every region’s use of land.

The new calculation will be based on the wind potential in the altitude of 90-100 meters above the surface, due there are some equipments operating in those altitudes, researcher says.

The total electrical generation capacity in Brazil was 105.4 GW at the end of 2007, of which 73% came from renewable sources, including large and small hydro power, wind and biomass.

Historically, Brazil has relied heavily on its abundant hydro resources. However, there is growing acknowledgement today that these resources are stretched due to economic and population growth, demographic expansion into the interior of the country and climate change.

There is a growing interest in Brazil to develop new renewable energy sources, fueled by concerns over energy security and an unwillingness to rely on imported fossil fuels.

The best wind resources in terms of wind speed and capacity factor are in the Northeast, Southeast and Southern Regions.

In 2002, the Brazilian government passed the pioneering PROINFA program, designed to foster the uptake of renewable energy sources in the Brazilian electricity mix. Although the programme has not been as successful as originally planned, it continues to add new capacity to the grid.

In 2008, it was decided that new capacity added to the grid from all energy sources should be done by public auction, with contracts awarded to the lowest bidders. Last year there were two major auctions of thermal energy. More
recently, there was a formal announcement that auctions will be held by type of generating source, and wind power was chosen to be one of the next auctions.

In 2008, five new wind farms were added to the Brazilian system, taking the total installed capacity up to 341 MW. Most of these new wind farms were located in the State of Ceará, in the North East of the country.

Historically, only one manufacturer was present in Brazil. During 2008, however, several other companies entered the market and as a result, there are now four major wind turbine manufacturers:

* Wobben Enercon (the pioneer in this market, with two manufacturing plants in Brazil and more than 340 MW installed, including PROINFA wind farms);
* Suzlon (with more than 300 MW sold for PROINFA wind farms);
* Vestas (with close to 200 MW sold for PROINFA wind farms);
* IMPSA (with orders for 318 MW that will be installed in

PROINFA wind farms that belong to the IMPSA Group of Companies; IMPSA also now has one manufacturing plant in Brazil).

The number of qualified developers and operators in the wind energy market has also grown considerably during the last year. Companies that have wind parks under operation or in accelerated construction have established a stronger local presence, thereby increasing their capacity for developing new wind parks.

Organisations that have PROINFA wind parks in operation or at advanced stages of construction include: Iberdrola, Pacific Hydro, AES Tractebel, Servtec Group, IMPSA – Energimp, EDP – Enerbrasil, Siif Energies, Enerfin and Ventos do Sul.

There are also newcomers in the wind market, including Brazilian groups ERSA, Renova, and Brennand Energia. New international players from Portugal, Spain, Italy, France, Norway, Germany and other European countries also have
interest in the Brazilian market.

Financing from Brazilian official sources can be obtained from the National Economic and Social Development Bank (BNDES) with nation-wide jurisdiction. For projects located in the Northeastern Region, financing can also be arranged by the Bank of Northeast of Brazil (BNB) and also by Development Agency of the Northeast (ADENE).

By mid-January 2009, the installed capacity in Brazil reached 360 MW, and it is expected to grow by several hundred MW during the course of the year. The PROINFA Wind Parks, which suffered a delay in the beginning of this program, had a completion deadline for the end of 2008. At the moment, contracts are under scrutiny between ELETROBRÁS and the project developers, analyzing the reasons for delay on a case by case basis.

A wind energy auction is expected to be held in late 2009, and is expected to call for up to 1,000 MW in generating capacity. More than 4,500 MW of projects are qualified for the auction.

Wind farms in Brazil

Wind farm-MW
Eólica Prainha-10 MW
Eólica de Taíba-5 MW
Eólica do Morro de Camelinho-1 MW
Eólio-Elétrica de Palmas-2.5 MW
Eólica de Fernando de Noronha-0.225 MW
Mucuripe-2.4 MW
RN 15 – Rio do Fogo-49.3 MW
Eólica de Bom Jardim-0.60 MW
Eólica de Olinda-0.225 MW
Parque Eólico do Horizonte-4.8 MW
Eólica Água Doce-9 MW
Parque Eólico Osório-50 MW
Parque Eólico Sangradouro-50 MW
Parque Eólico dos Índios-50 MW
Eólica Millennium-10.2 MW
Parque Eólico Beberibe-25.6 MW
Eólica Canoa Quebrada-10.5 MW
Eólica Paracuru-23.4 MW
Pedra do Sal-17.85 MW
Taíba Albatroz-16.5 MW

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Eletrobrás prepara novo Atlas Eólico Nacional

Estudos feitos pelo Centro de Pesquisas de Energia (Cepel) da Eletrobrás mostram que o potencial eólico (energia produzida pelos ventos) brasileiro é maior do que o estimado em 2001, quando foi elaborado o Atlas Eólico Nacional.

Na ocasião, os cálculos – que consideraram uma altura de 50 metros acima da superfície, além do relevo e da rugosidade do solo de cada região – apontaram que o potencial eólico do país era de 143 mil megawatts (MW) de energia, ou 143 gigawatts (GW). Os aerogeradores usados à época para a produção de energia eólica tinham entre 30 e 40 metros de altura.

"Nós fizemos alguns estudos preliminares que, realmente, apontaram mais de 250 GW. Mas não é um número fechado ainda, porque temos que fazer cada região em função da ocupação do solo", disse à Agência Brasil o engenheiro elétrico Antonio Leite de Sá. "Mas a gente espera que seja maior do que 250 GW, pelos indicativos preliminares que temos".

Antonio de Sá coordena o trabalho do novo Atlas Eólico Nacional, que está sendo desenvolvido pelo Cepel e que deve ficar pronto até o fim de 2010. O novo Atlas identificará o aumento do potencial eólico do país. Todo o Brasil será mapeado, a exemplo do que ocorreu na edição anterior. O pesquisador observou que, atualmente, os cálculos deverão considerar entre 90 e 100 metros acima do solo, uma vez que algumas usinas eólicas já operam com equipamentos nessa faixa de altura.

O estudo anterior utilizou como parâmetro principal informações de sondas por satélites, pelo movimento das camadas de ar na atmosfera. O Atlas foi calculado de forma matemática. "É um Atlas numérico". Todos os cálculos foram feitos para 50 metros. "E o índice de acerto foi muito bom". As usinas eólicas estão sendo implantadas no Brasil nos locais em que o Atlas indicou melhores ventos.

Antonio de Sá afirmou que o leilão de energia eólica programado pela Empresa de Pesquisa Energética (EPE) para o dia 25 de novembro deste ano servirá de diretriz para os estudos que estão sendo feitos. Se ele se repetir durante dez anos, vendendo energia eólica na faixa de um a dois GW por ano, isso representará entre 10 GW e 20 GW de energia dos ventos no país em dez anos. "Dependendo do sucesso desse leilão, a gente vai poder estimar o potencial", explicou. Cerca de 441 projetos estão inscritos na EPE para participar do leilão de energia eólica de reserva, disse Antonio de Sá.

www.cepel.br/

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