In Australia, our development of renewable energy has been slow compared to some parts of the world. However, near the nations capital, Canberra, Capital Wind Farm has been generating electricity from the wind for some years.
Arranged in “strings” along the hills above Lake George near Canberra, are 67 Suzlon wind turbines that are the prime movers of the Capital Wind Farm. The total combined capacity of these machines is 140.7MW (megawatts). For more info see => Capital Wind Farm
Back in 2009, I was studying photojournalism, to extend an interest in imagery and stories. I was looking for something that really interested me, to add to my portfolio. Having worked for a company that designed and built coal fired thermal power stations, many years earlier, when I was studying engineering, these alternative electricity generation systems had long fascinated me and Capital Wind Farm was being built in the region in which I lived.
At the time, many of the turbines had been erected but work was still in progress with commissioning planned for early in 2010. With permission of the head contractor and facilitated by the project manager, I got access to the site to document some of the activity. In appropriate safety gear, I was driven around by the project manager for a unique view of plant and folk working.
The pictures that follow include those from on-site; but also, broader views from locations around the district and even include wildlife and grazing animals. Not entirely satisfied that I’d captured the scale and impact; I charted a light aircraft, had the passenger door removed and viewed from above. The day was stormy, certainly not ideal for clear documentation but it did provide dramatic moody light and some interesting imagery which I think, now eight years later, are worth including. (btw hanging out of a small over-wing aircraft, bouncing around between storms at minimum speed is an experience 😊).
A local with the old and the new. Nothing new in using wind to provide motive force but the technology has improved. This Alpaca is more concerned by me than windmills.
Viewed from across the bottom end of Lake George, looking east.
Close up to the towers. Each tower has it's own transformer installation.
some challenging lifts in an exposed windy area
Blades ready to be erected. Each blade is about 40 meters long (from memory)
Wind breaks are really useful for sheep, especially at lambing, in the cold southern highlands. Wind turbines sit on the hills and ridges above.
Wedgetail eagles riding the thermals above turbines. These guys range over something like 500klm. Living up in the mountains of he Great Dividing range, I used to see pairs from time to time. Occasionally, they'd be with their fledglings. I can watch these birds for hours.
Private access only, just by the way
early evening and with cloud from the northeastern side
Now from the aircraft with cloud, storm heads and shafts of sunlight