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Small wind energy

Small scale wind turbines are one of the few ways how households can produce their own electricity. 

The governmental fund KredEx launched a pilot investment scheme for grants up to 70% to household solar panels and wind turbines (up to 11kw) in spring 2012. The grant was dedicated for individuals, who want to produce electricity and heat for their own purpose, using wind and solar resources. In some cases the purchasing and installation of storage devices was also eligible. The whole amount of financial support was one million euros and it came from Estonia’s sale of surplus Kyoto emission rights – Assigned Amounts Units (AAUs). The maximum amount of support was 30’000 euros per applicant. As a result an investment grant was given for 11 small wind turbine projects with a total amount of support 316’000 €. Besides the governmental grant also the simplified grid connection rules have increased people’s interest in household wind turbines.

In 2013, 15 small wind turbines (up to 11 kW) were added to the distribution grid with a total capacity of 150,6 kW. Most of them were wind turbines with a capacity of 10 kilowatts. In 2013, the small wind turbines connected to the main distribution grid produced approximately 100 MWh electricity. It is however unknown how much electricity produced by small wind turbines were directly consumed by its owners and how many off-grid small wind turbines there are in Estonia.

According the biggest Estonian DSO, Elektrilevi, there are 20 small scale wind turbines (less than 15kw), with a total output of 190kw connected to the grid (updated March, 2017). In addition 3 micro producers and 1 producer over 15kw have joined the distribution grid that combine wind and solar to produce their energy (total 51 kw).

Industry Progress

One of recent years´ successes is that Estonia now has its own small wind turbine manufacturer. Konesko AS started to develop its micro- and small wind turbines in 2009 and started the production of turbine models TUGE® 10 (10kw) and TUGE® 20 (20kw) in 2012. Both turbine models have been tested for many years in harsh environmental conditions in Konesko test site in Nasva, Saaremaa where ambient temperature goes as low as -35o C and wind speed has reached average speed up to 45 m/s. TUGE 10 has been tested against IEC 61400-2 standard in Alands Arcipelag test site by Intertek Semko AB. The sales of TUGE® turbines first started in the home market but soon expanded to the export market as the first sales contracts in Finland and Germany were made in late 2013.

The turbine design of TUGE® turbines has a European certificate for design for harmonization in the internal markets (Nr. 001893264-0001). The products are with high quality, good performance and fair price level and target to be a strong competitor to other European small wind turbine manufacturers.

As there are more companies in the testing stage of their small wind turbines models it is likely that in the future there will be more small wind turbine producers in Estonia.

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