To produce electricity with a wind farm in your home: the mini-wind power
Installing a mini-wind farm in your home is no longer a utopia, but it can be the ideal solution for those who need high-power electricity or simply live in a high-temperature climatic zone: a mini wind power plant can meet the energy needs of even more families, if installed in a two-family home or a condominium.
Named mini-wind or even micro-wind plant, the system has the potential to convert the kinetic energy of wind into electrical or mechanical energy, that can be used for the operation of electrical appliances throughout the house. In particular, for the installation of this type of wind power systems, the low power plant, from 0 to 20 kw, can be installed in autonomous systems of isolated consumers, in the most used stand-alone, or in systems connected to the network, known as grid-connected. Notwithstanding that when talking about a mini-wind plant are meant plants from 0 to 200 kW..
Size of a mini-wind plant
The dimensions of a mini-wind plant are suitable for each home-based positioning and range from:
- generators up to 40 m high;
- 0.5 meters blade, wind turbines.
Positioning of the mini wind power plant: nominal power from 0 to 20 kW
The mini wind turbine system must be positioned in he wind-most part of your home to ensure a fairly constant electric power production, avoiding too much use of alternative power systems that would increase the electric bill.
The micro-electric plant is available on the market in different models and nominal powers to meet every energy and price requirement, differentiating in the generator:
- horizontal axis generators with different number of blades to be installed perpendicular to the wind;
- Vertical axis generators, are small in size, do not need orientation and also work with very low winds.
If you installed a nominal power plant below 20 kW in your home, you are not subject to Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), while for higher nominal powers it is necessary to obtain certain certifications and permissions, different for each municipality and region.
Wind measurement parameters to evaluate the convenience of a mini-wind plant
The mini-wind plant must be installed in windy areas, but there are also benchmarks within which this type of system from renewable sources can be considered profitable and convenient not only to meet energy needs but also to earn and save on the electric bill.
The average wind speed on an annual basis , is the reference parameter. It is calculated on a number of installation sites, and it is useful to consider a convenient site for electricity generation with an annual average speed of over 4.5 – 5 , 5 meters per second. The installation sites of a mini-wind plant that present these parameters are considered profitable both in the production of electricity and in the gain of incentive rates.
The most windy sites that reflect the benchmarks for wind measurement are found in coastal territories, in the Italian islands and in southern Italy. In addition, the most convenient sites for power generation can be considered the areas with slopes between 6 and 16 degrees.
To summarize, consider the following table on the parameters needed to install a mini-wind plant in your home::
Reference parameters for wind measurement
Average wind speed
|Data on annual basis||4,5-5,5 or higher||between 6-16 degrees|
Cost of the mini-wind plant
Installing a mini-wind plant in your home costs around 3,000-5,000 euros per kW installed, although the price is very variable based on:
- the choice of generators;
- the nominal power
Return times of the initial investment of the mini-wind power plant
The return times of the investment are different according to the generation of electricity and the incentives received, but in general for a standard dwelling, the time to amortize initial cost of the plant is approximately 5 years.
The advantages of installing a mini-wind plant
Installing a mining plant for the production of electricity in your home has many advantages that affects environmental and economic aspects, since you have also to consider that wind, a renewable source, is a completely free resource without any environmental impact:
- electricity production with low wind intensity or in turbulence situations;
- elimination of noise;
- low environmental impact;
- production of large quantities of electricity.
Where should I install a mini windmill?
Installation of a mini-wind plant is recommended on the roof of your home only if:
- the plant turbines have a nominal power of 0-3 kW;
- there is an average and continuous wind;
- the site not affected by obstacles that could reduce the production of continuous electricity.
What to consider when installing a mini-wind plant: full-rate and on-site exchange
When installing a mini wind turbine system, it is important to consider also the distance from the connection point in addition , to the positioning, so as to reduce the length of the connecting cables and, consequently, the electrical leakage.
The incentives for installing a mini-wind plant
The energy count, for the installation of a mini-wind power plant connected to the power grid, includes:
- incentive of € 0.291 per kWh produced for plants between 1 and 20 kW;
- incentive of € 0.268 per kWh produced for plants between 20 and 200 kW.
This incentive mechanism lasts for 20 years and includes both the mini- mum pricing and the possibility of entering into the exchange contract on the spot..
With the on-the-spot exchange contract, the energy produced and placed on the grid is remunerated quarterly.
In the case of a positive balance in the annual balancing between network and withdrawal energy, the amount of the surplus of the user expense is retained as a credit for subsequent years.
For a clearer idea, see also the following table on the various incentive rates for the installation of a mini-wind plant:
Nominal power of the plant
All inclusive rates per produced KW
All inclusive rate contract duration
|Between 1 – 20 kW||0.291 €||20 years|
|Between 20 and 200 kW||0.268 EURO||20 years|