August 23, by Colin Houghton
Ecuador is set to join the wind farm revolution. The South American country’s Electricity Corporation of Ecuador (CELEC) has signed a deal with the Chinese company Global Goldwind to build a wind farm using the Company’s 1.5Megawatt Turbine (shown below).
Known as the Villonaco Project, the wind farm will have a 15 MW capacity and be built in the province of Loja in the South of the Country.
Construction is due to commence in September 2011, and is due for completion early in 2012. It will be built at a height of 8850 feet above sea level and comprise 11 turbines between 50 and 80 feet high with the blades of wind turbines ranging from 60 to 63 meters in diameter.
The Ecuadorian Government is carrying out a number of major projects involving renewable energy, so as to reduce the country’s dependence on oil for electricity generation. The cost is 34 million U.S$
Government officials say the infrastructure road work will be undertaken so as to avoid affecting the province’s ecosystem. For assembly a 300-ton crane will be used and is proposed to be transported from the U.S. or Panama. The company will build a substation and a transmission line that will allow the power generated to be transferred from Villonaco to Loja and then to the on to the National Interconnected System.
The wind farm will also include the construction of a convention centre where students can learn about wind energy. The wind farm is not only the first generation of wind energy in Ecuador, but will be the first in the world to be built at this altitude.