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Wind Turbine Payback Options
#1 Posted : Tuesday, December 02, 2008 6:00:27 AM
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Posts: 134,494

There are some good recent articles and lots of older articles on wind power and the economics of it at www.homepower.com .  Some libraries subscribe to the magazine, or you subscribe online as I do, then you can download as many PDF articles as you want.

There are also some real experts at this forum:


and also look at SWIEP. This professor may be able to help.


However, due to the variances of wind, I don't know that you'll get a really accurate answer. There is at least one good article in Home Power regarding the idea of "payback" for alternative energy which may help?

#2 Posted : Sunday, December 21, 2008 6:48:43 PM
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Posts: 134,494


   If its YOUR money , i suggest you do a  solar concentrator

in at same time .  Glass mirrors , about 100 .  Design  absorber

 as if you will eventually  use steam to drive electric generator .


kc7cc  GDL Mex'

#3 Posted : Sunday, December 21, 2008 6:48:43 PM
Rank: Guest

Posts: 134,494

Hello I am doing an analysis for the payback on a wind turbine in my area, and I needed a critique of it and some of it fleshed out.

I recently found the whisper 500 advertised for $5825, with a 70 foot tower kit for $1237. As the turbine is rated at 3k watts in 24 mph winds, maybe I can get a $3000 tax credit. That gives me a turbine and kit for $4062.

This turbine is also rated at 538 kwh monthly at 12 mph. At wind class 3, this table http://rredc.nrel.gov/wind/pubs/atlas/tables/A-8T.html says I have 11.5 mph at 33 feet up. Since I am using a 70 foot tower, I will just assume I have the 12 mph or better.

My delivery, supply, and fuel charge per kwh are $.02608, $.05341, and $.04494, respectively. Together they give me $0.12443 per kwh. Those 538 kwh then give me $66.94 worth of electricity every month. The payback on the $4062 is then 5 years and a month.

There are a lot of things I am not putting in here. These include the current rate increase of around 4% a year, the state consumption tax, the county tax, and the state "sales and use tax surcharge". These would tend to give a slightly lesser payback period. Things that would obviously extend the payback period are those needed for the kit that are purchased locally, like the schedule 40 pipe, concrete for the anchor, and other small pieces of hardware listed in the pdf... how much do you think these would set me back? Also, the electrical cable that would need to run from the tower to my house seems very expensive. Any suggestions on how to deal with this, besides moving the turbine closer? Also, a grid tie inverter... I know it will never get to 3k watts in my area, so any cheap suggestions?

Now, the turbine is rated at 3000 watts, but this is only achievable in the highest wind class (7). Does the tax credit take this into account?... can a turbine be downgraded to a lower output for tax credit purposes, based on installation site?

Thank you for your time.

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