The 2011 International Wind-Diesel Workshop is scheduled for March 8-11, 2011 in Girdwood, Alaska (near Anchorage). As with workshops in previous years, this event will bring the wind-diesel community together to share and discuss the current status of the technology and required improvements.
Interest in diesel alternatives and wind-diesel technologies remains high, in part due to rising oil prices. This interest is most notable in Alaska, where more than 20 systems have been implemented in the past few years. Small rural communities such as Kakonok, Alaska and islands such as the Galapagos and the U.S. Virgin Islands are investigating and implementing systems.
On March 8, 2011, a series of wind-diesel short courses will be offered. The class schedule will include the traditional introductory Wind-Diesel 101 for those new to wind-diesel technologies. This year's class will be expanded to cover more detailed topics as well as power system modeling. These short courses are targeted to those interested in developing more experience in wind-diesel power systems and will be taught by experts in the field. The introductory session enables people new to wind-diesel applications to better participate in the Wind-Diesel Workshop. Please check back for more detailed information on these short courses and how to pre-register.
Due to the expanded number of topics, we have added half a day to the Workshop schedule, resulting in a two-and-a-half-day agenda. Following the opening reception on the evening of Tuesday, March 8, the 2011 Wind-Diesel Workshop will run from Wednesday, March 9 through mid-day Friday, March 11. Topics to be addressed include the latest information in operating experience, design concepts, system components, related research and development, discussion of emerging markets, and description of institutional issues and perspectives based on the experiences of operating systems in Alaska and around the world. Open dialogs on each topic will be encouraged to help develop a better understanding of how the market must progress given the changing world dynamics. The workshop dinner will be held on Wednesday evening
Field trips to operational wind-diesel power systems are planned for Saturday, March 12 and Sunday, March 13. Although expensive and time-consuming due to the travel constraints of rural Alaska, past workshop attendees have consistently rated these trips as highlights. These field trips allow participants to experience first-hand operational systems and talk with local operators and village leaders on the operations and value of retrofitting diesel mini-grids with wind turbines and associated controls.