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Energy and Environment Directorate

Research Capabilities

Distributed Wind

PNNL conducts distributed wind market research and analysis on behalf of DOE's Wind and Water Power Technologies Office. PNNL produces the annual Distributed Wind Market Report. The Market Report serves as a primary information source providing data and analysis to help manufacturers, installers, developers, policy makers, and other industry players better understand the distributed wind market.

Distributed wind is defined in terms of technology application based on a wind project's location relative to end-use and power-distribution infrastructure, rather than on technology size or project size.

Distributed wind is:

  1. the use of wind turbines, either off-grid or grid-connected, at homes, farms and ranches, businesses, public and industrial facilities, and other sites to offset all or a portion of the local energy consumption at or near those locations, or
  2. systems connected directly to the local distribution grid to support grid operations and local loads.

Distributed wind is differentiated from wholesale power that is generated at large wind farms and sent via transmission lines to substations for subsequent distribution to loads and distant end-users. Because the definition is based on where the project is located and how the power is used, the distributed wind market includes wind turbines and projects of many sizes. For example, distributed wind systems can range in size from a 1-kW or smaller off-grid wind turbine at a remote cabin to a 10-kW turbine at a home or farm to several multi-megawatt wind turbines at a university campus, manufacturing facility, or any large facility. On-site distributed wind turbines allows farmers, schools, and other energy users to benefit from reduced utility bills, predictable controlled costs, and to hedge against the possibility of rising retail electricity rates.


Distributed Wind Market Reports

2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012

Distributed Wind Market Report Presentation

2018 | 2017

Distributed Wind Market Report Data Tables

2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012

Distributed Wind Market Report Factsheets

2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012

Distributed Wind Policy Comparison Tool

Additional Resources:

Distributed Wind Photo Gallery

For further information on Distributed Wind, contact Alice Orrell, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), at (509) 372-4632.

Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas