Wind Basics

Wind Power

Wind Power Offers A Sustainable Option In The Pursuit Of Renewable Energy.
photo credit- Carlos Barria Reuters

Wind is the movement of air from an area of high pressure to an area of low pressure. In fact, wind exists because the sun unevenly heats the surface of the Earth. As hot air rises, cooler air moves in to fill the void. As long as the sun shines, the wind will blow. And as long as the wind blows, people will harness it to power their lives…>>

How Wind Turbines Work
An Animated Guide to the Science of Wind Turbines
Engage with animated graphic>>     

… While we’ll leave the specifics up to the engineers, have you ever wondered what keeps these massive propellers in motion? We’ve wondered the same, so we put together a simple guide on how wind turbines work, which you can see by clicking the animation.

How Much Energy Is Available From The Wind
What’s this? P = ½·ρ· A·v³
People think that as long as they can feel the wind, ample electricity should be generated from the wind turbine. They have often dreamed of a small wind turbine that can be installed on the roof of a house can provide all the energy they need. However, this is not the case. We should learn more on the limits of wind. Like anything in nature, there are limits to what is possible….The power available at a given wind speed passing through an area (e.g. a window) can be calculated by using the following formula:   P = ½·ρ· A·v³ …>>

How Much Power Can We Extract?
Betz Law
In 1919, a German physicist Albert Betz, based on conservation of momentum and energy, he proved that the maximum possible energy that can be derived from a wind turbine cannot be more than 59.3 percent, or 16/27 of the potential energy in the wind.
In practice, no wind turbine has ever achieved the Betz limit….>>

The Beaufort Scale
Admiral Sir Francis Beaufort of the British navy developed a system in 1805 to estimate the wind strengths without the use of instruments. It is still in use today…

New Interactive Map Shows Big Potential for America’s Wind Energy Future
Click on the map to interact:

Wind power is growing rapidly in America. In fact, wind has accounted for 33 percent of all newly installed electricity generation capacity in the years spanning from 2006 to 2013. The United States now gets about 4.6 percent of its electricity from wind power. But how can this pattern of strong growth continue and how will a thriving wind industry help the public and improve the environment?
Our new Wind Vision Report seeks to answer those questions and more…>>

Wind Maps and Data
WINDExchange provides wind maps and anemometer data to help homeowners, communities, states, and regions learn more about their available wind resources and plan wind energy projects. WINDExchange also maintains more than a decade of installed capacity maps showing how wind energy has progressed across the United States over time as advances in wind technology and materials make wind resources more available.

Click the maps below to learn more>>

The U.S. Department of Energy provides an 80-meter (m) height, high-resolution wind resource map for the United States with links to state wind maps. States, utilities, and wind energy developers use utility-scale wind resource maps to locate and quantify the wind resource, identifying potentially windy sites within a fairly large region and determining a potential site’s economic and technical viability.

Potential wind capacity maps are provided for a 2014 industry standard wind turbine installed on a 110-m tower, which represents plausible current technology options, and a wind turbine on a 140-m tower, which represents near-future technology options. For more detailed information regarding the assumptions and calculations behind the wind potential capacity maps, see the Energy Department’s Enabling Wind Power Nationwide report.

The U.S. Department of Energy provides 90-meter (m) height, high-resolution wind maps and estimates of the total offshore wind potential that would be possible from developing the available offshore areas. The offshore wind resource maps can be used as a guide to identify regions for commercial wind development.

The U.S. Department of Energy provides 30-meter (m) height, high-resolution wind resource maps for the United States. Businesses, farms, and homeowners use residential-scale wind resource maps to identify wind sites that may be appropriate for small-scale wind projects.

Revolution…Now Rewind: Illustrating the Wind Energy Story

As detailed in the recently released 2016 Revolution…Now report, the U.S. wind energy industry has forged a trajectory of sustained growth thanks to rapidly decreasing costs and increasing market demand.
Let’s take a deeper dive to better understand where we’ve been, where we are now, and where we’re headed in the near future.
Click the images below to enlarge:

The cost of land-based wind has dropped by 41% since 2008, and wind capacity has tripled in the same timeframe.

Scaling up size to capture better wind.

The future is here for offshore wind.

Wind has great future potential by 2050.

Wind Turbines Types
Four Main Types of Wind Turbines
–  Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine (HAWT) – UpWind
–  Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine (HAWT) – DownWind
–  Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT) – Drag based
–  Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT) – Lift based
For more detail on these turbine types-

Noises And Vibrations

Top 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Wind Power
Source:  | Liz Hartman |  August 18, 2014,Communications Team Lead, Wind and Water Power
Today’s wind turbines are much more complicated machines than the traditional prairie windmill. A wind turbine has as many as 8,000 different components.….>>