With their blades reaching 800 feet into the sky, these German windmills will help provide energy even when the wind doesn’t blow.
According to a report by Windpower Engineering, a project in Gaildorf, Germany, by Max Bögl Wind will take the crown as tallest when it goes online in 2018, with four turbines held at 580 feet whose blade tips reach over 800 feet into the sky. The bulk of that height difference is actually because the turbines were built on 130-foot-high water reservoirs. They will be used to hold water pumped from a nearby lake using spare energy, in order to create hydro-power during periods of high demand.
Wind and pumped hydro storage are by no means new technologies, but their combination in this way is impressive. It’s thought that the system, which can switch from production to storage or vice versa within 30 seconds, will be able to store 70 megawatt-hours when it’s up and running.
By one estimate, more than 10-gigawatt hours will be generated each year, enough electricity to power 2,500 four-person households. Max Bögl Wind AG is thus playing its part in making sure the energy transition succeeds. After all, the stated goal of the German federal government is to increase the share of renewable energy sources for power generation to 50 per cent. It currently lies at 38 per cent. “Without large-scale and forward-looking projects and ideas, the energy transition in Germany cannot succeed. With the water battery and hybrid towers, we are making wind energy a more attractive and efficient source of clean energy while also setting new records,” remarks Josef Knitl, Board Member at Max Bögl Wind AG.
Currently, world’s tallest operating offshore wind turbines are situated in the UK. Those can be found near the northwest coast of England at Burbo Bank.