Wind power in Ohio

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Wind power in Ohio is located in Ohio
NASA Plum Brook
NASA Plum Brook
Buckeye Wind Farm
Buckeye Wind Farm
Hardin Wind Farm
Hardin Wind Farm
Timber Road II Wind Farm
Timber Road II Wind Farm
Timber Road Wind Farm
Timber Road Wind Farm
Timber Road III Wind Farm
Timber Road III Wind Farm
Hog Creek Wind Farm
Hog Creek Wind Farm
Black Fork Wind Farm
Black Fork Wind Farm
Wind power projects in Ohio
  Green pog.svg Operating
  Orange pog.svg Under construction
  Purple pog.svg Proposed
  Black pog.svg Canceled or decommissioned

Wind power in Ohio has a long history, and as of 2016, Ohio had 545 megawatts (MW) of utility-scale wind power installations installed, responsible for 1.1% of in-state electricity generated.[1] Over 1000 MW more were under construction or pending approval.[2] Some installations have become tourist attractions.[3][4] There has been a sudden increase in generating capacity, as total wind power capacity in the state was just 9.7 MW in 2010.[5] By 2019, there were 738 MW of capacity, which generated 1.71% of Ohio's electricity.[6]

Ohio's first large wind farm, Timber Road II near Payne in northwest Ohio, opened on October 6, 2011.[7][8] It was surpassed in June 2012 by the 304 MW Blue Creek Wind Farm.[9]


Photos of "Mr. Brush's Windmill Dynamo" from Scientific American, 1890[10]

Wind power in Ohio has a long (albeit discontinuous) history.

Brush's windmill dynamo[edit]

Charles F. Brush designed one of world's earliest electricity-generating windmills in Cleveland, Ohio in 1887–1888.[11] His engineering company built the "windmill dynamo" at his home. It operated from 1886 until 1900.[10] The Brush wind turbine had a rotor 56 feet (17 m) in diameter and was mounted on a 60-foot (18 m) tower, making it similar in size to some of the first commercial wind farm turbines of the 1980s. However, the machine was only rated at 12 kW; it turned relatively slowly since it had 144 blades. Brush used the connected dynamo either to charge a bank of batteries or to operate up to 100 incandescent light bulbs, three arc lamps, and various motors in his laboratory. The machine fell into disuse after 1900 when electricity became available from Cleveland's central stations, and was abandoned in 1908.[12]

NASA Lewis MOD series[edit]

From 1974 to 1981, NASA's Glenn Research Center (then the Lewis Research Center) in Brook Park, Ohio led the U.S. Wind Energy Program for large horizontal-axis wind turbines, designing a series of 13 experimental large horizontal-axis wind turbines. In conjunction with the United States Department of Energy, NASA developed and tested megawatt-class wind turbines. The program's goal was to develop the technology, and then turn it over to private industry. While none of the program's wind turbine designs saw mass commercialization, the tests generated valuable data and pioneered modern design concepts such as tubular towers and computer control of blade pitch and rotor yaw.

Most of the MOD-series wind turbines went to sites outside of Ohio, but the first unit, the MOD-0 operated at NASA's Plum Brook facility near Sandusky from 1975 to 1988.[13] Initially the wind turbine had a lattice tower, a 38.1m diameter two-bladed rotor mounted downwind from the tower, and a capacity of 100 kW. Lockheed Corporation manufactured the aluminum rotor blades. The discovery of severe stress resulting from the rotor blades passing through the tower's wind shadow led to several redesigns. In 1979, NASA rebuilt the MOD-0 with an upwind rotor mounted on a teetering hub, with a steel spar reinforcing the blades. In 1982, a tubular tower replaced the lattice tower. Finally, in 1985 NASA tested a single-bladed rotor with a teetering hub.[13] In 1981, two NASA Glenn engineers, Larry Viterna and Bob Corrigan, used the adjustable-pitch blade feature of the MOD-0 to invent an analytical method for calculating wind turbine output in high winds, which has since become widely used in the wind power industry as the Viterna method.[14][15]

Wind Turbine Regulation[edit]

In 2014, the Ohio General Assembly passed HB 483. This codified a wind turbine setback of 1,125 feet (343 m) from the property line for significant wind farms.[16] The change in wind turbine setbacks has discouraged investment of new wind farm development in the State of Ohio.[17]

Installed capacity and wind resources[edit]

The following table compares the growth in wind power installed nameplate capacity in megawatts (MW) for Ohio and the entire United States since 1999.[18][6]

Year Ohio US
1999 0 2,500
2000 0 2,566
2001 0 4,261
2002 0 4,685
2003 3.6 6,374
2004 7.2 6,740
2005 7.2 9,149
2006 7.4 11,575
2007 7.4 16,596
2008 7.4 25,410
2009 7.4 34,863
2010 9.6 40,267
2011 112 46,916
2012 428 60,005
2013 428 61,107
2014 435 65,880
2015 443 74,471
2016 545 82,171
2017 617 89,078
2018 729 96,487
2019 738 105,583
Average annual wind power density map for Ohio at 50m above ground

One large undeveloped resource of wind in Ohio is Lake Erie.[19][20][21][22] Its shallow depth and shelter from hurricanes provide advantages in terms of both ease of construction as well as safety of investment. Although land based wind farms frequently have lower siting costs, offshore wind farms usually have better wind, as open water lacks obstructions such as forests, buildings, and hills.

On February 11, 2010, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory released the first comprehensive update of the wind energy potential by state since 1993, showing that Ohio had potential to install 55 GW of onshore wind power nameplate capacity, generating 152 TWh annually.[23] For comparison, Ohio consumed 160.176 TWh of electricity in 2005;[24] the entire U.S. wind power industry was producing at an annual rate of approximately 50 TWh at the end of 2008; and Three Gorges Dam (the world's largest electricity-generating station) produced an average of 80 TWh/yr in 2008 and 2009.

Wind farms[edit]

In 2008, Ohio had one utility-scale wind farm, one single large turbine wind power installation, and two more in development.

American Municipal Power Inc Wind Farm[edit]

The AMP Wind Farm located at the following coordinates:(41°22′46″N 83°44′16″W / 41.379481°N 83.737707°W / 41.379481; -83.737707) west of Bowling Green in Wood County is Ohio's first utility-scale wind farm. It consists of four Vestas V80-1.8MW wind turbines giving a combined nameplate capacity of 7.2 MW.[5][25] The first two units came online in 2003, and the second two in 2004, next to the Wood County landfill. The US$10 million wind farm's wind turbines are highly visible for miles in all directions, and have become a tourist attraction, regularly hosting busloads of school children. A solar-powered kiosk on the site gives data to visitors about the project, the current wind speed, and real time power generation.[3]

Great Lakes Science Center[edit]

The Great Lakes Science Center installed a reconditioned Vestas V27-225 kW wind turbine in 2006, outside its museum building on Cleveland's North Coast Harbor between Cleveland Browns Stadium and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (41°30′24″N 81°41′48″W / 41.506661°N 81.696769°W / 41.506661; -81.696769). The North Coast entertainment complex receives 1.5 million visitors per year, and the wind turbine appears regularly on local news broadcasts and Cleveland Browns NFL broadcasts, making it one of the world's most-viewed wind turbines.[4]

The wind turbine originally operated on a wind farm in Denmark, which resold the wind turbine while repowering to newer, larger wind turbines.[4][26] The ground around the wind turbine features an art display entitled Shadow and Light.[27] The display includes walkways that align with the wind turbine's shadow at solar noon and two hours, eleven minutes after solar noon, respectively. On the vernal and autumnal equinoxes, the wind turbine's shadow also aligns with the walkways by length.[27] Thus the wind turbine functions as a large gnomon in an incomplete sundial. The display includes boxes of light bulbs encased in concrete on one side of a plaza around the wind turbine's base, representing the amount of electricity consumed by the average American household in a year.

One Energy Wind for Industry projects[edit]

Findlay, Ohio based on-site distributed-generation wind energy company One Energy has developed and constructed nine Wind for Industry projects to date with three projects in construction as of October 2018. Wind for Industry describes wind energy projects in which utility-scale wind turbines are installed on-site and interconnected on a facility’s side of their utility meter (a process known as distributed generation or behind-the-meter wind, which sometimes follows net metering[28]). These projects are designed to achieve a significant reduction of an industrial facility’s electrical consumption from the grid. One Energy's on-site generation list includes:

Wind for Industry turbine built for Ball Corporation's metal division in Findlay, Ohio
  • Cooper Farms’ Wind VW in Van Wert, OH - 4.5 MW - Operating since 2011[29]
  • Haviland Wind in Haviland, OH - 4.5 MW - Operating since 2012[30]
  • Ball Corporation's Zephyr Wind Project in Findlay, OH - 4.5 MW - Operating since 2015
  • Whirlpool Corporation's Findlay Wind Farm in Findlay, OH - 3.0 MW - Operating since 2015[31]
  • Marathon Petroleum's Harpster Wind in Harpster, OH - 1.5 MW - Operating since 2016[32]
  • Whirlpool Corporation's Marion Wind Project in Marion, OH - 4.5 MW - Operating since 2017[33]
  • Whirlpool Corporation's Ottawa Wind Project in Ottawa, OH - 1.5 MW - Operating since 2018[34]
  • Valfilm Corporation's Findlay Wind Farm in Findlay, OH - 3.0 MW - Operating since 2018[35]
  • Whirlpool Corporation's Greenville Wind Farm powering a KitchenAid facility in Greenville, OH - 4.5 MW - Operating since 2018[36]
  • Autoliv-Nissin Brake Systems Findlay Wind Project in Findlay, OH - 1.5 MW - In Construction 2018[37]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Ohio Wind Energy" (PDF). U.S. Wind Energy State Facts. American Wind Energy Association. Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  2. ^ Ohio Power Siting Board Process Archived 2016-01-21 at the Wayback Machine page 18
  3. ^ a b "Ohio gov blows hard with wind-powered energy". Environment Ohio. 2008-01-12. Archived from the original on 2011-07-26. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  4. ^ a b c Wasserman, Harvey (2008-07-31). "Great wind on the Great Lakes". Renewable Energy World. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  5. ^ a b "U.S. Wind Energy Projects - Ohio". American Wind Energy Association. 2008-11-19. Archived from the original on November 18, 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  6. ^ a b Wind Energy in Ohio
  7. ^ NA, EDP Renewables. "Horizon Wind Energy Invests Approximately $175 Million in Paulding County, Ohio". Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  8. ^ "Timber Road II Wind Farm Commissioning Marks a First for Ohio - CleanTechnica". 2011-10-06. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  9. ^ "Blue Creek Wind Farm, Ohio". Power Technology | Energy News and Market Analysis. Retrieved 2019-04-30.
  10. ^ a b "A Wind Energy Pioneer: Charles F. Brush". Danish Wind Industry Association. Archived from the original on 2007-02-26. Retrieved 2007-05-02.
  11. ^ "Mr. Brush's Windmill Dynamo". Scientific American. 63 (25): 54. 1890-12-20.
  12. ^ "History of Wind Energy". Encyclopedia of Energy. 6. Elsevier. 2007. pp. 421–422. ISBN 978-1-60119-433-6.
  13. ^ a b "Winds Of Change, Stories of a dawning Wind Power Industry, American Federal Projects 1975–1985". Nordisk AeroForm ApS. Archived from the original on 2008-07-16. Retrieved 2008-12-10.
  14. ^ Wittry, Jan (2008-09-06). "NASA Wind Energy Research Reaps Rewards". Archived from the original on 2009-01-17. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  15. ^ Viterna, L.A.; Janetzke, D.C. (1982-09-01). "Theoretical and experimental power from large horizontal-axis wind turbines". Brook Park, Ohio: Glenn Research Center. 19820025954. Archived from the original on 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  16. ^ "Am. Sub. H.B. 483" (PDF). Ohio General Assembly. 2014. p. 163. Archived (PDF) from the original on October 14, 2017. Retrieved October 13, 2017.
  17. ^ Funk, John (May 24, 2017). "Ohio wind law crippling wind development, $4.2 billion boost to Ohio economy". The Plain Dealer. Archived from the original on October 8, 2017. Retrieved October 13, 2017.
  18. ^ "U.S. Installed and Potential Wind Power Capacity and Generation". United States Department of Energy. 2019. Archived from the original on June 26, 2019. Retrieved July 21, 2019.
  19. ^ Bradley, David (2004-02-06). "A Great Potential: The Great Lakes as a Regional Renewable Energy Source" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-03-25. Retrieved 2008-10-04.
  20. ^ "Great Lakes eyed for offshore wind farms". NBC News, Associated Press. 2008-10-31. Retrieved 2008-11-14.
  21. ^ "Momentum Grows for Great Lakes Offshore Wind". NewEnergyNews. 2008-10-31. Archived from the original on 2011-01-01. Retrieved 2008-11-15.
  22. ^ "Lake Erie Wind Resource Report, Cleveland Water Crib Monitoring Site, Two-Year Report Executive Summary" (PDF). Green Energy Ohio. 2008-01-10. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2008-12-17. Retrieved 2008-11-27.
  23. ^ "Estimates of Windy Land Area and Wind Energy Potential by State for Areas >= 30% Capacity Factor at 80m". National Renewable Energy Laboratory. 2010-02-04. Archived from the original (XLS) on 2011-03-10. Retrieved 2010-02-25.
  24. ^ "Electric Power and Renewable Energy in Ohio". USDOE, EERE. 2008-06-25. Archived from the original on 2009-12-08. Retrieved 2010-02-25.
  25. ^ "AMP-Ohio/Green Mountain Energy Wind Farm, USA". World wind power database. Archived from the original on 2011-07-24. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  26. ^ "Wind Turbine Project Q & A". Great Lakes Science Center. 2006-05-17. Archived from the original on 2009-04-25. Retrieved 2008-10-28.Link is broken as of 2008-12-15.
  27. ^ a b "Renewable Energy Exhibits". Great Lakes Science Center. Archived from the original on 2009-05-20. Retrieved 2008-12-18.
  28. ^ "Distributed Wind | Department of Energy". Retrieved 2018-06-01.
  29. ^ Everett, John (2013). "Cooper Farms". Green Energy Ohio News Magazine.
  30. ^ "Haviland (USA)". The Wind Power: Wind Energy Market Intelligence. Archived from the original on 17 July 2018. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
  31. ^ "Whirlpool and Ball plan $18M wind farm". Toledo Business Journal. March 2015. Archived from the original on 2018-06-28.
  32. ^ "Harpster Wind (USA)". The Wind Power: Wind Energy Market Intelligence. Archived from the original on 17 July 2018. Retrieved 17 July 2018.
  33. ^ "Whirlpool Corporation Breaks Ground on Latest Ohio Wind Power Generation Project at its Marion Manufacturing Facility". Whirlpool Corporation. 6 December 2016. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  34. ^ Sharpe, Joseph (7 December 2017). "Whirlpool Corporation in Ottawa Going Wind Power". 3BL Media. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  35. ^ Wilin, Lou (13 June 2017). "Valfilm plans wind turbines". The Findlay Courier. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  36. ^ Whirlpool Corporation (15 November 2017). "Whirlpool Corporation Announces Plans for Wind Turbines at Greenville Manufacturing Facility". Cision PR Newswire. Retrieved 10 July 2018.
  37. ^ "One Energy to build Findlay's eighth wind turbine". The Findlay Courier. 28 March 2018. Retrieved 10 July 2018.

External links[edit]