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Wind at Princess Elisabeth Station


The Princess Elisabeth Station has been officially inaugurated in Antarctica on February 15th, 2009.

This station is the only polar base operating entirely on renewable energies. It has eight wind turbines from Proven Energy.

It marks a major change, as most stations rely on diesel generators – because no wind turbines, until now, were thought to be robust enough for such extreme conditions. The turbines will endure the most severe weather conditions on Earth.

They will be operating in average winds of 53 mph and winter gusts of over 200mph, while still providing 230V electricity for the stations heating, computers, lights and scientific instruments. The electricity generated is expected to be the highest output of any small wind power system in the world.

Proven Energy, a Scottish based small wind turbine manufacturer, supplied the 6kW wind turbines. The turbines are designed to work in extreme environments. The company says that the flexibility in the blades means that as winds get stronger they twist to reduce aerodynamic efficiency, regulating their speed to prevent damage to the turbine and allowing them to continue operating and generating output in the type of storms that would result in conventional turbines being turned off.

Previous similar installations have weathered ice storms in Slovenia and typhoons in Japan.

The official launch represents a technical achievement, blending the best both science and technology can offer.

By bringing together international technology and expertise, Princess Elisabeth will combine eco-friendly construction materials, clean and efficient energy use, optimization of the station energy consumption and the best waste management techniques.

These leading techniques and facilities will aim to reduce their ecological footprint on the pristine environment of Antarctica, following the principles set forth by the Antarctic Treaty.

In addition to the turbines, both solar thermal and photovoltaic (PV) will be used on the building itself. The water supply for the station will use solar thermal panels to melt the snow thereby limiting the use of electrical energy to pump water.

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No Responses to “Wind at Princess Elisabeth Station”

  1. Wind Says:

    I love good news in the morning! 🙂


    Winds last blog post..The Dirt on Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining in the Appalacian Mountains

  2. Linda Says:

    Hi Wind … Good Morning! I am sure the base is happy!

  3. Casey Says:

    Beautiful, a good start for an untouched continent.

  4. Linda Says:

    Hi Casey … And they will keep it that way, I am sure!

  5. Says:

    Wind at Princess Elisabeth Station | Forced Green…

    This station is the only polar base operating entirely on renewable energies. It has eight wind turbines from Proven Energy….

  6. wilson Says:

    Way to go, it’s a big advanced of the human race, Linda! As we know that the average windstorm at Antarctica can be reached up to 50 mph (The highest record is 320 km/h or 198.8 mph), thus it’s a wise decision to build the wind generating station!

    wilsons last blog post..Color will affect Your Children’s Health!

  7. Linda Says:

    Hi Wilson … Yep! why not use wind when it is blowing constantly. They made sure the turbines would survive the severe weather.

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