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Design construction and measurement of small wind turbine system in Nepal

The concept of harnessing wind energy in the world can be traced back to several decades initially implemented either for pumping water or for grinding purposes. With the development in technologies, renewable energy has gradually paced up with considerable amount of energy contribution in several national electricity grids around the world. Nepal has much potential in hydropower and even in solar power. In recent years there has been seen much interest in wind power sector as well. Research and development work can be seen ongoing in educational institutions like Institute of Engineering and Kathmandu University. Several student projects as well as large projects can be observed every year being conducted in these institutions either in blade construction or generator construction or controller which can be taken as a useful reference for development of wind turbine system. Government organization such as alternative energy promotion center is responsible for conducting activities in the sector of wind energy. There has been seen some work from the government level in drafting a policy intending power generation from wind energy due to the country suffering from long power cuts every day. Government has aimed huge amount of power generation based on public private partnership models. Steps such as these can be taken as a positive milestone as contribution from one of the clean source of energy particularly in the field of wind energy. Several pilot projects from AEPC and nongovernmental organization like Practical action has installed small wind turbine system in different locations across the country. The mode of implementation basically follows the system design forwarded to local manufacturers. Local manufactures have very good hand skills and perform good work with the job they are given. But there are almost only few systems that are still in operation. As the system encounters problems, there are none organizations involved in maintenance. Despite there is lack of precise knowledge to handle the problems. Some of the problems usually observed are

·      Unmatched blade and generator power

·      Corroded magnets

·      Stator cracking

Problems of unmatched blade and generator are observed to be the most common problem. The main cause of this problem is due to the lack of performance and power curves. Designs and construction are implemented, but there are no means and technical knowhow from which performance analysis can be carried out.

Click here to read the full paper. (Author: Kimon Silwal)