Hau Nui wind farm

Wind farm

Site history

The South Wairarapa area is recognised for its significant wind energy potential, and the Hau Nui site is acknowledged as one of the best wind farm sites in the world.

The May 2001 Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority report "Review of New Zealand Wind Energy Potential to 2015", cited the Wairarapa Hills and Coast area as having the second highest potential energy output in New Zealand.

The area could provide up to 12% of the New Zealand wind energy potential, and is second only to the Foveaux Strait and South East Hills area in the South Island.

Wind turbine

Turbines

Hau Nui has 15 Enercon E-40 wind turbines. The seven turbines installed in stage 1 (1996) are third-generation wind-energy technology and the additional eight turbines installed in stage 2 (2004) are later versions of this model.

The E-40 is a variable-speed machine. The rotor, driven by three blades, is directly linked to the generator, allowing for rotation at speeds varying between 18 to 38 revolutions per minute. Each blade has its own electronic pitch control system, which automatically adjusts the angle of the blades to the wind to maintain a constant power output.

The gearless generators are designed with as few moving parts as possible and the absence of a gearbox means no possibility of oil leakages and no oil change.