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Free «Wind and Hydroelectric Energy» Essay Sample


Reasons to implement alternative energy include stabilizing the price of fuel, which is the key to keeping the price of energy predictable, affordable and reducing natural-gas purchase cost. It can also be a steady and reliable supply of electricity.

Ease of Construction

One of the ways to implement the wind farm could be a lease arrangement with a private owner, which means that he (she) would own and operate the turbines while the university simply pays for the use of that farm and possibly, buying wind generated power. The other way is a project when the University itself is the owner of the wind turbine. Electricity produced by the wind turbines would be utilized by the university facilities.

The study looks at how transporting equipment to the site will be accomplished since some of the equipment may not be transported for instance via road. (Means, 2010). Electrical infrastructure analysis in the study looks at which production line the produced electricity would be fed into. In the event if there is none in place the issue of adding extra infrastructure will be considered.

Wind turbine structures, have the potential to interfere with communication systems if they are sited within the line of sight between the transmitter and receiver, an occurrence known as “shading”, the study will look at the communication systems within the university.

The installation of wind turbines requires certain permits. The study looks at the permits needed that include both federal and local permitting. 

Estimated Plant Costs

The scope of the cost feasibility study is aimed to detail site-specific costs. The cost assessment is a collection of four main factors: the wind resource, the cost of installation in terms of materials (the turbines, including freight and turbine installation, which comprises over 50% of a project’s cost), tax and cost of financing the project. (James F. Manwell, 2010).

After installation cost, the study should look at the cost of operations and maintenance-The O&M category includes items such as insurance, land lease costs and property taxes (if applicable), equipment maintenance, repair and replacement, and administration of the wind farm.

Hydroelectric Energy

The researchers state that the most energy generative power is Hydropower. Presently, hydropower is able to convert 90% of the gained energy into electricity. This can be compared to the most efficient fossil fuel plants, which are only 60% efficient (Harman, 2008).

Ease of Construction

These are the criteria considered in the university’s study: the convenience of the plant’s location, from the point of easy access by transport; and, stable environment, in order to avoid possible negative consequences.

To start up a hydropower plant the university would have to invest a considerable sum of money, but to maintain it will not take that much money. If a plant is run up wisely, its life may last for 40 -50 years. It would only be necessary to replace regularly some old equipment and maintaining its good condition in general.

Estimated Plant Costs

Since there is no existing dam or generator the study is to look at the expenses of constructing both of them in the university, this also includes purchasing the turbine and the generator. The licensing of a hydropower project (through the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) costs millions of dollars. State and local permits add even more to that burden making projects not feasible. The main cost after setting up the plant would be the debt service to the investors. Other expenses include facility cost, Engineering and consultancy costs for the constructing work, Engineering and consultancy costs for electromechanical works, and the project cost.


The cost and ease of construction feasibility shows that it would be more practical to build the wind farm on the university rather than opting for the hydroelectric energy. 


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