Leveraging Wind Power: Wind Turbines

  • Winds are influenced by the ground surface at altitudes up to 100 meters.
  • Wind is slowed by the surface roughness and obstacles.
  • When dealing with wind energy, we are concerned with surface winds.
  • A wind turbine obtains its power input by converting the force of the wind into a torque (turning force) acting on the rotor blades.

Large Wind Turbines

  • Able to deliver electricity at lower cost than smaller turbines, because foundation and planning costs are independent of size.
  • Well-suited for offshore wind plants.
  • In areas where it is difficult to find sites, one large turbine on a tall tower uses the wind extremely efficiently.

Small Wind Turbines

  • Local electrical grids may not be able to handle the large electrical output from a large turbine, so smaller turbines may be more suitable.
  • High costs for foundations for large turbines may not be economical in some areas.
  • Landscape considerations