New Wind Energy Record as WINDPOWER 2010 Begins By Michael Goggin (AWEA)

Perfectly timed for WINDPOWER, wind output in ERCOT [the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which operates the utility system for much of the state] has been extraordinarily high ever since we got here yesterday, and they just set a new record for instantaneous wind output a few minutes ago.

Output at 5:16 PM CT [May 23] was 6721 MW, which "blows away" the old record of 6272, set on March 5.

It is possible but unlikely that wind output could have been even higher earlier today – since ERCOT only displays current output and not historical data I can’t know for sure (I just happened to check at 4:25 and notice it was near record territory, and I watched in real-time as wind set several new records before it peaked at 6721).

It also happened near peak demand on a warm day, which contradicts the perception that wind power only blows when electric demand is low. (Load was 48144 at the time, which puts the penetration at just under 14%, which is lower than the 20% that has been reached several times previously in ERCOT when demand has been lower.)

These numbers are only for ERCOT, so the total for Texas would be even higher if you included the wind output from the parts of the state on SPP’s [the Southwestern Power Pool] grid, which I don’t have because SPP doesn’t report their numbers.

By Tom Gray,