HUSUM – the greatest wind show on earth
This September a small town on Germany's North Sea coast will once again stage what's billed as the world's leading wind energy fair. PES will be there of course, and we're delighted to be able to offer an exclusive preview of the show.
Almost a quarter of a century ago, a group of wind turbine enthusiasts came together in the local livestock auction hall to stage the first ever wind turbine exhibition. Most of the turbines on show had been built by the exhibitors themselves, and these pioneer models were tried and tested mainly by farmers in the region. A relatively small turbine was sufficient to provide lighting and heating for pig sheds, as well as the farmer's kitchen.
There is an old rule of thumb that says if you can persuade farmers to go along with something, it must be good. And if someone ever wants to write a history of how wind turbine technology changed the world, they only have to use the development timeline of the Husum exhibition as their basis. This is because Husum has developed dynamically with the industry, and has always been the most accurate reflection of the growth of all aspects of the industry.
As the use of wind power increased in popularity, the exhibition grew to include component suppliers, engineering specialists, research facilities and experts from the financial and insurance sectors. The wind industry came of age in Husum, and its role as the leading international wind trade fair will once again be underlined from Tuesday 18 September until Saturday 22 September 2012.
Husum has also witnessed the growth of the wind industry on its own doorstep, with North Frisia now boasting the highest density of turbines in the country. It saw the first large scale turbines going up, and as the technology improved it witnessed the introduction of the first attempts at repowering. Where else in the world can visitors see detailed technology on show, discuss the latest trends and innovations, and then go outside and see it all in action?
Some of those early pioneers are now the leading lights in the industry, feted and respected by those who once ridiculed their ideas and the very thought of sustainable energy generation. The people of this region are very used to living with the, sometimes very brutal, forces of nature. Having survived storms and extreme loss of land over the centuries, few have more experience in harnessing such energy for the good of their neighbours. And while all year round, delegations from across the world come here to study the wide array of renewable energy technology, it is undoubtedly the biennial Husum WindEnergy show that is the jewel in North Frisia's crown.