Tararua Wind Farm
Located on 700 ha of private sheep and beef farming land high in the Tararua Ranges, Stage I of the Tararua Wind Farm was commissioned in 1999 with 48 turbines, and the capacity for future expansion to 103 units. The Stage II expansion was commissioned in 2004, bringing the total installed capacity to 68 MW.
Each of the 103 (Stage 1 and Stage II) Vestas V47 Turbines has three 23.5-metre blades, with the nacelle housing the generator and hub mounted on a steel lattice tower. The blades have full automatic feathering capacity to ensure the turbine maintains a relatively constant speed of 29 rpm, and the turbines are able to turn on their towers (known as yaw) to capture winds from different directions.
Stage III of the Tararua Wind Farm, employing 31 Vestas V90 turbines each producing 3 MW, was granted Resource Consents in May 2004 and commissioned in September 2007. The technically advanced V90 turbines each utilise three individually feathered 45-metre blades rotating at 16 rpm.
The Tararua Wind Farm is productive at wind speeds above 5-metres per second, through to 25-metres per second, with an annual mean wind speed at hub height of close to 10-metres per second. With average wind speeds of 35 km/h, 85% of the time, the scheme’s performance ranks amongst the best in the world, producing 46% of its rated output on an annual basis in an environment where the international wind farm average is around 30%.
The Tararua Wind Farm is New Zealand’s largest wind farm, with an installed capacity of 161 MW, and an average annual output of 620 GWh.
The Tararua Wind Farm is an excellent example of clean, green, renewable energy generation, with the only potential effects being visual impact, due to the appearance of the wind towers on the skyline, and noise made by the turbine blades rotating in the wind. Significantly, during Resource Consent Hearings for the scheme, the visual impact of the Tararua Wind Farm was adjudged to be minor. Today, the Wind Farm is a major tourist attraction for the local area and it is well supported by the local community.
TrustPower, in conjunction with suppliers, continues to develop innovative solutions to reduce its overall carbon footprint. Utilising local engineering expertise to reduce the former reliance on off-shore specialist maintenance resources for refurbishment of critical wind turbine componentry has been an example of that.
Click here to watch wind turbine video
In March 2000 Tararua Wind Power Limited won the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority’s (EECA) Energy- Wise 2000 award in the new renewable energy project category.
Wind power education
TrustPower is playing an active role in educating people about wind power. By:
1. Hosting visits for educational groups to the Tararua Wind Farm;
2. Tararua Wind Farm educational resource workbook;
3. Tararua Wind Farm information brochure.
For more information contact TrustPower on 0800 87 11 11 or email us.
Wind power related links