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Assessing the feasibility of wind energy as a power source in Turkmenistan; a major opportunity for Central Asia's energy market

Bahrami, Arian, Teimourian, Amir, Okoye, Chiemeka Onyeka, Khosravi, Nima
Energy 2019 v.183 pp. 415-427
Weibull statistics, electricity, energy, energy costs, energy density, guidelines, markets, oils, solar energy, wind power, wind speed, wind turbines, Turkmenistan
While Asia as a continent has enjoyed nearly 40% of the total installed wind energy capacity, the contribution of some countries in the region is less significant. Turkmenistan as an important oil and gas producing country is a major exporter of electricity in the Central Asia region. The country has an enormous potential for wind and solar energy development overshadowed by its wealth of oil and gas. This paper aims to assess the wind energy potential of Turkmenistan by taking into account the hourly wind speed data of eighteen different locations in a typical meteorological year. The widely utilized and validated two-parameter Weibull distribution function is utilized for calculating the power and energy density of the locations in the country. Fifteen commercially available wind turbines are also employed and compared against each other in terms of annual power output, energy output, and capacity factor for the considered locations. Finally, the economic metric indicator of the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) is employed to assess the feasibility of the system. The obtained results are expected to be a guideline for investors and policymakers regarding the wind energy development in the country while showing a major opportunity for Central Asia's energy market in the future.