Thailand to turn on largest wind farm

The largest wind farm in Southeast Asia will start operation next month in Thailand’s Nakhon Ratchasima province, with a generation capacity of 103.5 megawatts and a price tag of 6.5 billion baht ($211 million), reported the Bangkok Post.

The project in southwest Isaan is part of a larger project by Wind Energy Holding Co (WEH), a wind energy developer in Thailand, founded in 2009, that aims to reach a combined 1,000 megawatts by 2020, said Nopporn Suppipat, the company’s founder and director.

The first stage of this mega project will consist of 45 wind turbines located 300 metres above sea level.

Suppipat has stated that once this wind farm becomes operational, it will generate more power than the current largest wind energy project in Southeast Asia, the Bangui Bay wind farm in the Philippines, which has been running since 2005 with a capacity of 33 megawatts.

Compared to many wind farms in Thailand that stand by the seashore dormant many hours of the day, Nakhon Ratchasima is said to have greater gusts of wind.

“All the sites we’ve selected are in areas of strong wind speeds of eight metres per second or more,” Suppipat said.

The first project by WEH will quickly be doubled in capacity by another project with a capacity of 103.5 megawatts, expected to be completed at a similar cost.

All in all, the first phase of the wind farm will be completed by the first quarter of 2013. The project was originally given approval by the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand in 2010.