How can windmills generate electricity

EWEA is now WindEurope

The Earth is surrounded by the atmosphere, which is made up of air. Opponents of wind power have even suggested that it might be counter-productive, because we'd need to build extra backup coal, nuclear, biomass, or hydro plants or some way of storing wind-generated electricity for those times when there's not enough wind blowing. Facts and figures from the Global Wind Energy Council.

Costs vary but the biggest cost is the turbine itself. In this way lower air pressure is created on the leading edge of the blade, and higher air pressure created on the tail edge. An average offshore wind turbine of 3.

how can windmills generate electricity

After measuring wind data for at least one year, the mean annual wind speed can be calculated. A typical modern turbine has a maximum power output of about 2 megawatts MW , which is enough to run 1000 2kW electric toasters simultaneously—and enough to supply about 1000 homes , if it produces energy about 30 percent of the time.

Click here to find your national association. There have been suggestions about using a fleet of electric cars as a giant collective battery , for exactly this purpose, but even large-scale batteries hooked up to individual wind farms could be very helpful.

This system, which exposes green electricity producers to market dynamics, is well adapted to countries with a large penetration of wind power. Large blades on the turbine rotor are connected to an electrical generator via a shaft and a series of gears. They also provide further information on how the turbines should be positioned in relation to each other and what the distance between the turbines should be. You are here: The longer the rotor blades, the more energy they can capture from the wind.

The brakes are also applied during routine maintenance.

how can windmills generate electricity

Electricity from these turbines is fed into a utility grid and distributed to customers, just as with conventional power plants. Which countries are most aggressively pursuing wind energy? However, in the coming years, as offshore turbines are manufactured on a larger scale, prices will come down, making offshore wind energy increasingly competitive. Existing activities like farming and tourism can take place around them and animals like cows and sheep are not disturbed.

Aside from the equipment, here are a few pointers worth bearing in mind: Is wind the energy of the future?

Wind turbines

More Articles Hydro Power Vs. According to the Energy Information Association, the United States has three major transmission grids: In the generator, the rotating shaft causes a set of magnets to turn about a coil of wire to create an electric current due to electromagnetic induction. Micro-wind turbines Photo: Some Flickr photos are published under Creative Commons licences allowing limited reuse under certain conditions ; others are copyright images.

Wind is usually measured by its speed and direction. In 2012, the average size is 2.

how can windmills generate electricity

Wind statistics show the best sites to locate wind farms according to the best wind resources.