Pictures from Site Visit
International Wind-Diesel Workshop
The Workshop provided participants the opportunity to visit commercial wind-diesel projects in rural Alaska on Saturday March 12th (Kokhanok) and Sunday March 13th(Kodiak Island), through two independent field trips. In both cases, participants toured the wind-diesel plants and had the opportunity to talk with local operators and village leaders on the operations and value of retrofitting diesel mini-grids with wind turbines and associated controls.
March 12th, 2011
Kokhanok: High Penetration Wind‐Diesel System with Energy Storage and Electric Thermal Recovery Kokhanok is a remote community in Southwest Alaska, directly across Lake Iliamna from the community of Iliamna. The Kokhanok Electric Utility currently operates a diesel power plant with a total installed capacity rating of 490 kW and a peak load of 106 kW. Logistics for getting diesel fuel to Kokhanok are difficult and expensive, forcing the utility to charge $.90/kWh for power (2009 statistic). In July 2009, March Creek LLC answered an RFP from the Lake and Peninsula Borough and was awarded a contract to team with the tribally owned electric utility for a high penetration wind‐diesel system with coincident thermal energy generation. Construction began in May of 2010 following a wind resource assessment and geotechnical evaluation. The wind turbines were commissioned October 18, 2010, and the system is expected to be fully operational by the end of December this year. The project was completed on schedule with no change orders and no cost overruns.
Future Plans: Marsh Creek , LLC expects to complete testing and have the system fully operational by the end of February 2011. The thermal heat recovery system will use excess electricity to provide additional heat to the existing jacket water heat recovery system for the school.
March 13th, 2011
Kodiak Electric Association installed three 1.5 MW GE turbines during the summer of 2009, marking this as the first MW‐scale turbines installed in Alaska. The wind turbines, in their first year, offset diesel fuel use by 930,000 gallons. KEA provides electric service to approximately 5,800 meters in a service area surrounding the City of Kodiak, US Coast Guard Integrated Support Command Kodiak, Bells Flats and Russian Creek area, and villages of Chiniak, Pasagshak and Port Lions. KEA’s loads range from 11 to 26 MW with peak loads driven primarily by seafood processing.
Kodiak is looking at installing another three 1.5‐MW wind turbines, but to do so a more complex integration system will be required. At present, Kodiak is undergoing high‐resolution modeling to determine the best solution for meeting its future development objectives. KEA’s vision to produce 95% of its energy sales with cost effective renewable power solutions by the year 2020. The additional 4.5 MW has the potential to push KEA’s isolated grid to a 75% wind penetration rate, and KEA is currently investigating grid stabilizing solutions that would provide both wind energy storage and grid frequency support so the additional wind power can be safely integrated onto the island’s system. The first of these endeavors is to expand Terror Lake’s base load capacity with an additional hydro turbine generator. KEA trained its own employees to be able to perform routine maintenance required on the wind turbines by sending them to an extensive GE Wind Turbine School. KEA’s homegrown wind‐smith technicians are trained at the same level of GE Commission Technicians. This on‐island expertise provides KEA a great benefit in reducing the operation and maintenance costs of the wind generation while providing the Kodiak community exciting new employment opportunities in this emerging industry. KEA is exploring the potential of providing “green tags” to the US Coast Guard station in Kodiak to assist them in achieving their Presidential Initiative on renewable energy, and to the local seafood processors to enhance the marketability of Kodiak’s wild seafood products. These “green” marketing projects provide a secondary value to the wind resource that KEA is proud to share with its members.