Renewable Energy Innovation

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For the past week I have been at the 2nd Wind Empowerment conference in Athens.

Wind Empowerment is a network of groups working on Small Wind Turbines, with a particular focus on the Hugh Piggott designed wind turbine.

The conference was an inspiring mix of interesting presentations, hands-on workshops and social fun. Around 45 people from at least 10 countries attended.

Here are some notes and photos from the event.

The conference started off with a streamed opening talk by Hugh Piggott covering his 30 + years of experiences with locally built small wind turbines.

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 We then had two days of presentations from at least 20 participants covering a wide range of topics under the main headings of:

  • Measurement
  • Maintenance
  • Technology
  • Education
  • Market Assessment

Along with Rafael Oliva, I was co-ordinating the Measurement working group and I presented my open-source wind resource data logger. There were other presenters within the measurement group including:

  • Rafaels years of experience with data logging wind turbines in Patagonia, Argentina.
  • Markos monitoring and test site for small wind turbines in the Netherlands
  • Gilles' data logger for turbine performance using Arduino and Open Energy Monitor
  • Toms experiences with designing a power and energy logger for turbine performance
  • Luiz and Aimans work on open-source data logging using RFID tags.

The presentations were followed by a short Q&A session where many interesting experiences were shared.

These presentations were all live-streamed and have been recorded, so should be available on-line soon. I'll link to them when they are.

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Luiz Valdes from Brazil presenting.

We also had site visits to some local installations of wind turbines in Rafina and Marathonas.

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One of the two turbines in the NTUA test site in Rafina.

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Andy and Matteo relaxing in front of the two turbines in Marathonas.

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Some interesting discussion on data logging systems for small wind turbines.

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Demo models of small wind turbines for discussion.

I also ran a hands-on workshop about data logging, specifically on the data logger I am working on. I ran this workshop three times with groups of between 5 and 12, but did not have any time for doing photos. The workshop seemed to go very well and raised lots of discussion.

Some prototype units of the wind resource data logger have been given to various Wind Empowerment network members and hopefully will be used 'in the field'. Those experiences will be vital to produce a robust and reliable logging unit which is suitable for remote locations.

Thanks to everyone involved with organising a totally inspiring week. I look forward to the next one.

Webinar viewing

A Wind Empowerment Webinar I presented on low cost, open-source datalogging is available here: