Analysis of Wind Resource Potential for Small-Scale Wind Turbine Performance in Kiseveni, Kenya

Justus Nzuka Mwanzia, David Wafula Wekesa, Joseph Ngugi Kamau
2019 International Journal of High Energy Physics  
Kenya's energy depends on fossil fuels and the country is yet to embrace alternative sources especially in densely populated rural areas and urban poor. The use of wind is gaining popularity because it is cost effective, non-polluting, renewable and enormously available. The main challenge is non-availability of the renewable energy resource data in the rural areas where the bulk of the country's population resides. The study assessed wind energy potential for Kiseveni area which is a rural
more » ... within expansive Mwingi/Kitui plateau in Kitui. The assessment entailed both empirical and numerical approaches by collecting a ten-minute interval wind speed for a period of six months with sensors elevated at 10 m height above the ground. From the collected data, wind speed analysis, wind directional analysis, wind energy and power both empirical and numerical was done to establish the available potential of wind energy at the site. In addition, the study elucidated the computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) application in addressing wind energy potential at the site and its added value with respect to its empirical approach. The results of the study were used to evaluate the potential for wind energy at the site for small-scale wind turbine application to the power-starved population. Empirical power density ranged between 31.65 W/m 2 to 54.00 W/m 2 between 40 m to 100 m hub heights respectively with corresponding numerical power density ranging between 71.76 W/m 2 to 125.45 W/m 2 . Numerical rotor power (P R ) and average wind power (P W ) were found to be -0.26 and 33.71 W/m 2 giving a negative C P for the height. The results of the study reveal that the site corresponds to wind class 1 meaning the wind resource in the area is not suitable for grid connected generation but can run off grid small wind turbines and stand-alone activities like water pumping.
doi:10.11648/j.ijhep.20190601.13 fatcat:posa2t65wjfqpkvv56bhwongde