World's Tallest Wind Turbine Built in Germany
The world’s tallest wind turbine has shouldered its way into the skyline of the German town of Gaildorf, where the overall project could produce enough energy to meet what equates to the energy consumption of 1,000 U.S. homes.
Constructed by Max Bögl Wind AG, the central turbine hub stands at 584 feet tall, and with the addition of the length of the blade, the height comes to 808.7 feet, according to Futurism. Acting in conjunction with three other turbines—each with hubs between 508 feet and 583 feet tall— the wind farm will produce an average of 10,500 megawatt hours annually. In comparison, the average U.S. home uses 10 megawatt hours per year.
The turbine quartet cost $81 million to build, and will produce $7.6 million in revenue per year, noted Electrek.
Other than the being the world’s tallest wind turbine, what makes the German-based renewable energy resource something special is the actual fact of its height; for every additional meter, energy output increases anywhere from .5 to 1 percent, thanks to higher wind speeds and decreased turbulence. On top of this, each of the towers bears a GE 3.4-137 3.4 MW generator.
Tower Height Technical Details
To build the world’s tallest wind turbine, Max Bögl Wind AG implemented its System 160+, which includes a segment geometry in the pre-stressed concrete tower base section, along with cylindrical rings used as middle sections, according to Electrek.
The turbine’s height is achieved through the tower base section working in conjunction with a 131-foot-tall water tower. The water towers are used as a higher altitude reservoir that connect with the pumped storage hydroelectric power station located over 600 feet beneath the wind turbine quartet. Water is pumped via wind power at strategic times, in order to store it in the reservoirs. These can store up to 70 megawatt hours. Working together, these elements form what is known as a water battery.
From there, when needed, the water can be released to drive an electric current, noted Electrek. In less than 30 seconds the storage plant can switch gears from producing electricity to storing water.
To date, wind farms have prevented more than 600 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions from entering the atmosphere.