Table of Contents
Journal of Wind Energy
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 613936, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/613936
Research Article

Long-Term Wind Characteristics at Selected Locations in Mauritius for Power Generation

Department of Physics, University of Mauritius, 80837 Reduit, Mauritius

Received 30 June 2015; Accepted 30 August 2015

Academic Editor: Adrian Ilinca

Copyright © 2015 A. Z. Dhunny et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Interests in wind energy have gained impetus in many developed and developing countries worldwide during the last three decades. This is due to awareness of the population about the depletion of fossil fuels as well as Government campaigns and initiatives to encourage the use of renewable sources of energy. This work focuses on the wind energy potential at two selected locations (Plaisance and Vacoas) in Mauritius. The emphasis is to assess whether small-wind turbines have a potential in these regions for generation of power for domestic applications. Such wind turbines can range in size from 400 W to 10 kW depending on the amount of electricity to be generated. The assessment is based on the correlation of the local wind speed data to a two-parameter Weibull probability distribution in order to effectively estimate the average wind power density of the sites. Nearly 40 years of mean wind speed data is utilized. Of the two sites investigated it is found that Plaisance yielded the highest wind velocity (as compared to Vacoas). The study also estimates the energy output of six commercial small-wind turbines of capacity ranging from 1 kW to 3 kW at these two sites, placed at multiple heights.