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Large-Scale Wind Integration Studies in the United States: Preliminary Results

October 13, 2009

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory, is managing two large-scale wind integration studies. The Western Wind and Solar Integration Study covers the footprint of WestConnect, a group of transmission owners that covers most of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, and Wyoming. The Eastern Wind Integration and Transmission Study covers a large part of the Eastern Interconnection, and leverages a large-scale transmission study known as the Joint Coordinated System Plan. Both studies analyze the impact of 20-30% wind energy penetration within the study footprint based on energy. This paper (PDF 853 KB) Download Adobe Reader discusses key results that have emerged so far from each study, focusing primarily on simulation results based on hourly production simulations. Results from both studies show that high wind penetrations can be successfully integrated into the power system, but depend on sufficient transmission and significant changes in operations.

—Julie Jones