Sunday, November 28, 2010

What You Should Know about Wind Energy

Norman Kirby

Wind energy is an ancient technology used 4000 years ago. It is utilized to power sails, irrigate crops and to grind corn. Windmills are one of the evidences of its early use. The wind, just like the sun is an unlimited source of energy. It never runs out. However, unlike the sun, it continues to work even at night.

Wind is formed when certain areas in the atmosphere become warmer than the others. As the warm section rises, the air blows to take its place. The wind energy converts kinetic energy to form a sustainable force. The amount of potential energy depends on the amount of wind produced and is relatively affected by the density of the air. When there is a sufficient amount of wind, this becomes the mechanical energy or electricity. The cost of wind energy is more competitive compared to other energy generating technologies, as related expenses are minimal. Also, it does not need fuel to make it work, making it pollution free. Unlike fuels and other non-renewable energy sources, it does not produce greenhouse gases and radioactive and toxic wastes.

The wind turbines are used to gather wind energy to convert it to mechanical power or electricity. The mechanical power can be used for tasks such as pumping water or grinding grain. Modern turbines have two basic groups - the horizontal axis and the vertical axis design. The horizontal axis system is commonly seen in farms and is used for pumping water. Its components include a blade, which converts the energy in the wind; a drive train, which often includes a generator and a gearbox; and a tower that supports the drive train and the blade. It is generally accessorized with control panels, interconnection equipment and electrical cables. The vertical axis system is commonly used in large industries. It is often grouped together as a power plant or commonly known as a wind farm to generate bulk electrical power. This is then distributed to households and business establishments as a form of electricity. The electricity produced is used to supply generators to power homes, schools and industries. Wind turbines are like aircraft propeller blades that turn as the wind blows to power an electric generator. A wind turbine is an equal opposite of an electric fan. Unlike the fan, it doesn't make use of electricity to produce air. Rather, it turns with the help of the wind to produce electricity. However, not all winds can meet the demands of electricity if not stored in batteries. This is because wind as a source of power is intermittent and cannot be tied together to be a sufficient source all the time. On the other hand, to answer this issue , secluded locations are found to be sufficient wind sites. Future applications are then currently studied to make energy production more efficient. It is deliberated to enhance this energy source with the use of hydrogen generating electrolysers to work together to fill in the intermittent aspects of wind supply.

Kellie is an expert when it comes to Alternative Energy Sources. To find out the latest News and Tips on Solar and Wind Energy, visit Energy Sources Today at

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