ERCOT sets record wind output of 17,920 MW amid wintry weather

By Jeff Zhou

Houston — The Electric Reliability Council of Texas set a new wind output record of 17,920 MW on Monday afternoon as a cold front was moving into the area with windy conditions.

The new output wind record was set at 3:32 pm CST Monday and surpassed the previous record of 17,542 MW set in February, by more than 2%, according to ERCOT Wind Integration Report.

According to the US National Weather Service data, wind speed in San Angelo, Texas, went as high as 29 mph Monday and averaged about 18 mph, with gusts speed up to 36 mph.

High temperatures in Dallas reached the mid 40s degrees Monday, as much as 22 degrees below normal, while lows fell near the freezing point, as much as 15 degrees below normal, according to CustomWeather data.

When Monday's record was set, wind generation accounted for 40.49% of system-wide demand, which was 44,258 MW at the time, according to ERCOT data. The wind penetration record stands at 54.22%, reached October 27.

Real-time prices in West Hub stayed below $10/MWh for three hours ending 6:15 am before the morning load ramp up, and stayed slightly above $10/MWh before falling below again around noon through 4:30 pm.

High wind seemed to recede starting Tuesday, as wind generation was expected to top out at 14.5 GW around midnight and fall through the day, before peaking at only 4.3 GW Wednesday.

On the demand side, the grid operator was set to reach a record November high of 55.3 GW at 7 pm Tuesday and 59.2 GW at 8 am Wednesday, while the current record stood at 50.8 GW set in 2014.