How They Work
Most wind turbines start operating at a speed of 4-5 metres per second and reach maximum power at about 15 metres per second.
- The wind turns the blades.
- The blades turn the shaft inside the nacelle (the box at the top of the turbine).
- The shaft goes into a gearbox which increases the rotation speed.
- The generator converts the rational energy into electrical energy.
- The transformer converts the electricity from around 700 Volts (V) to the right voltage for distribution, typically 33,000V via an inverter.
Onshore wind turbines have become less attractive as potential power produces for many reasons including the visual impact on the environment. They are though quite rightly being sited offshore where consistant wind speeds ensure the production of electricity is far more reliable and less intrusive on our immediate environments.
Even onshore they are capable of out performing other renewable energies such as Solar in the right environment. That said the initial capital costs are high and the design work extensive. They also tend to need a relatively high amount of servicing, and therefore carry an amount of ongoing costs.
For the right application they are a fabulous solution.