The doctoral dissertations of the former Helsinki University of Technology (TKK) and Aalto University Schools of Technology (CHEM, ELEC, ENG, SCI) published in electronic format are available in the electronic publications archive of Aalto University - Aaltodoc.

The Impact of Large Scale Wind Power Production on the Nordic Electricity System

Hannele Holttinen

Dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Science in Technology to be presented with due permission of the Department of Engineering Physics and Mathematics for public examination and debate in Auditorium F1 at Helsinki University of Technology (Espoo, Finland) on the 17th of December, 2004, at 12 noon.

Overview in PDF format (ISBN 951-38-6427-8)   [724 KB]
VTT Publications 554, ISSN 1455-0849

Dissertation is also available in print (ISBN 951-38-6426-X)
Copyright © 2004 VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
VTT Publications 554, ISSN 1235-0621


This thesis studies the impact of large amounts of wind power on the Nordic electricity system. The impact on both the technical operation of the power system and the electricity market are investigated.

The variability of wind power is reduced when looking at a large interconnected system with geographically dispersed wind power production. In the Nordic countries, the aggregated wind power production will stay between 1-90 % of the installed capacity and the hourly step changes will be within ±5 % of the installed capacity for most of the time. The reserve requirement for the system, due to wind power, is determined by combining the variations with varying electricity consumption. The increase in reserve requirement is mostly seen on the 15 minutes to 1 hour time scale. The operating reserves in the Nordic countries should be increased by an amount corresponding to about 2 % of wind power capacity when wind power produces 10 % of yearly gross demand. The increased cost of regulation is of the order of 1 €/MWh at 10 % penetration and 2 €/MWh at 20 % penetration. This cost is halved if the investment costs for new reserve capacity are omitted and only the increased use of reserves is taken into account. In addition, prediction errors in wind power day ahead will appear in the regulating power market to an extent which depends on how much they affect the system net balance and how much the balance responsible players will correct the deviations before the actual operating hour.

Simulations of increasing wind power in the Nordic electricity system show that wind power would mainly replace coal fired production and increase transmission between the areas within the Nordic countries and from Nordic countries to Central Europe. The CO2 emissions decrease from an initial 700 gCO2/kWh to 620 gCO2/kWh at 12 % penetration. High penetrations of wind power will lower the Nordpool spot market prices by about 2 €/MWh per 10 TWh/a added wind production (10 TWh/a is 3 % of gross demand).

This thesis consists of an overview and of the following 8 publications:

  1. Holttinen, H., Hirvonen, R. 2005. Power system requirements for wind power. Chapter 8 in Wind Power in Power Systems. Ed. by Ackermann, T. John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Pp. 144-167. ISBN 0-470-85508-8 (HB). (In print.) © 2005 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. By permission.
  2. Holttinen, H. 2005. Hourly wind power variations in the Nordic countries. Wind Energy. (In print.) © 2005 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. By permission.
  3. Holttinen, H. 2005. Impact of hourly wind power variations on the system operation in the Nordic countries. Wind Energy. (In print.) © 2005 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. By permission. © 2005 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. By permission.
  4. Nørgård, P., Holttinen, H. 2004. A Multi-Turbine Power Curve. In: Proceedings of Nordic Wind Power Conference NWPC'04, 1.-2.3.2004. Gothenburg, Sweden. 5 p. Submitted to Wind Energy. © 2004 NWPC. By permission.
  5. Holttinen, H., Pedersen, J. 2003. The effect of large-scale wind power on a thermal system operation. In: Proceedings of the 4th International Workshop on Large-Scale Integration of Wind Power and Transmission Networks for Offshore Wind Farms. 20.-22. Oct. 2003, Billund, Denmark. KTH, Stockholm, Sweden, Denmark. 7 p. © 2003 KTH. By permission.
  6. Holttinen, H., Vogstad, K.-O., Botterud, A., Hirvonen, R. 2001. Effects of large scale wind production on the Nordic electricity market. Proceedings of European Wind Energy Conference, Wind Energy for the New Millenium, EWEC'2001, July 2-6th, 2001, Copenhagen, Denmark. 4 p. © 2001 EWEC. By permission.
  7. Holttinen, H., Tuhkanen, S. 2004. The effect of wind power on CO2 abatement in the Nordic Countries. Energy Policy, Vol. 32/14, pp. 1639-1652. © 2004 Elsevier. By permission.
  8. Holttinen, H. 2005. Optimal electricity market for wind power. Energy Policy. (In print.) © 2005 Elsevier. By permission.

Keywords: wind power, power systems, power system impacts, wind power variations, power generation, renewable energy sources, fluctuating production, predictability of wind power, electricity markets, emission reductions, CO2 abatement, Nordic countries, simulation

This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.

© 2004 Helsinki University of Technology

Last update 2011-05-26