Posted on 08 September 2010
Turkey maybe struggling to become a full member of the European Union, but they have successfully gained their entry into the European Electric Grid.
Currently the European Union shares a combined electricity grid, with the exception of the UK, Finland, Norway, Sweden, and, of course Turkey, that is until now.
Like the UK, Turkey uses alternating current (A.C.) at 50hz, (the current flows from positive to negative at a rate of 50 cycles per second). This is the same system as the European Grid, but Turkey’s system has been out of phase due to other factors which are too technical to make explanation necessary. Suffice to say: Turkey has been trying to join the grid for 10 years, but its efforts finally came to fruition this year.
General Electric had completed the work necessary to synchronise the systems last year, and the first tests were carried out in January, under high load conditions. The second set of tests — under low load conditions — was completed in June. Turkey will now be connected to the grid for a 1 year trial starting from this month.
This is a big step for Turkey and good news for various reasons:
Turkey has a lot of successful hydro-electricity generation projects in place, and the country will now be able to export any excess power generated by these means. When connected to the European grid there is also the potential that Turkish hydroelectric can act as a buffer for growing forms of alternative energy within Europe, whereby the hydroelectricity production is ramped up to fill slowing generation from solar and wind power, or vice versa.