El Hierro Portal

Download the spread sheet: El Hierro 10 minute grid data from REE in XL format

14 November 2014: El Hierro – another model for a sustainable energy future
Summarizes project design and goals.

2 September 2015: El Hierro Revisited
Presents the first grid data from REE, documents 50% renewables generation through September 30 and discusses the 2-hour period of 100% renewables generation on August 9.

21 September 2015: Another Visit to El Hierro
Documents 49.5% renewables generation between June 26 and August 31, concludes based on analysis of results to date that renewables generation cannot exceed 80%.

2 October 2015: El Hierro Renewable Energy Project – September 2015 Performance Review
Percentage of renewables generation falls to 47.5 from 49.5% with September data included because of lower wind speeds in September. Inadequate energy storage identified as project’s “Achilles Heel”

4 November 2015: El Hierro Renewable Energy Project – October 2015 Performance Review
Wind lull continues, renewables percentage in October falls to 13.6% and the percentage since startup to 34%. Grid stability problems causing curtailment of wind power during high wind periods. Curtailment achieved by using surplus wind power to pump water from the lower to the upper reservoir.

4 January 2016: El Hierro Renewable Energy Project – End 2015 Performance Review and Summary
Wind lull continues. Percent renewables generation since startup now down to 30%. Based on analysis of results to date renewables generation cannot exceed 50%. Plant does not meet any of the four criteria necessary for success.

2 February 2016: El Hierro – 16 hours of 100% renewables generation
Short discussion of 100% renewables test between 0000 and 2150 on January 31.

16 February 2016: El Hierro – now up to 41 hours of 100% renewables generation
Short discussion of 100% renewables test between 0100 on February 14 and 1740 on February 15.

2 March 2016: El Hierro, January/February 2016 update:
Wind lull continues through January (22% renewables) but strong winds in February increase output to 54% renewables. Discusses the use of hydro system as a “dynamic resistor” to curtail wind. Discusses the impacts of desalinated water supply and irrigation requirements:

4 March 2016: How to make El Hierro 100% renewable
Discusses the obstacles to wind and solar and questions why the geothermal potential of El Hierro has not been investigated.

24 March 2016: El Hierro – and the water goes round and round ……
Discusses how the plant is matching output to El Hierro demand by switching wind output between the grid and pumping and wasting surplus wind by pumping water to the upper reservoir and letting it flow back down without generating any hydropower.

2 April 2016: A preliminary reservoir balance calculation for El Hierro.
Reservoir photographs show the two reservoirs are less than 20% full and have been at that level for some time. Suggests either a shortage of water or a reservoir stability problem.

2 May 2016: March-April performance update. Discussion of performance plus information on current reservoir storage and the failure of the Barlovento dam.

18 May 2016: El Hierro – a change in operating procedures Discussion of change from diesel baseload/wind load following to wind-hydro baseload/diesel load following.

6 June 2016: El Hierro – May 2016 update . Further discussion of May change in operating procedures. Brief disussion of 2015 revenues and costs.

11 July 2016: El Hierro completes a year of full operation . Summarizes first year results and concludes that GdV can already be classified as a “failed project”.

8 August 2016: El Hierro July 2016 performance update. GdV breaks monthly renewables record with 65.9% supplied to the El Hierro grid in July.

2 September 2016: El Hierro August 2016 performance update

2 October 2016: El Hierro September 2016 performance update

2 November 2016: El Hierro October 2016 performance update

24 December 2016: Rainer Strassburger’s CLOUD data

5 January 2017: El Hierro end 2016 performance update

23 February 2017: An independent evaluation of the El Hierro wind-pumped hydro systemguest post by Benjamin Jargstorf