Wind turbines are sustainable energy sources, and they have a reduced impact on the environment compared to fossil fuels.
Did you know that wind turbines can produce more than 6 million kilowatt-hours (khw) of electricity per year? They are capable of supplying electricity to approximately 1 500 households.
Are wind turbines an efficient energy source?
Wind turbine efficiency refers to the amount of kinetic energy that is converted to electricity.
According to physics, the most significant efficiency limit is 59.6%, which is good. If a turbine captured 100% of energy, it would be incapable of producing electricity.
The wind would stop blowing, and as a result, the blades would stop turning.
The average wind turbine efficiency ranges between 35 to 45%. But, it can rise to 50% efficiency during strong winds.
Wind turbines in the UK are a reliable source of energy all year round, and they generate electricity 70 to 80% of the time.
Wind turbines are a more efficient energy source than coal, and coal can only convert 29 to 37% of its energy into electricity.
Gas has similar efficiency to wind turbines in that it can convert 32 to 50% of its energy into electricity.
How do wind turbines work?
Wind turbines generally feature 3 blades called rotors, and these rotors are attached to tall wind towers.
In urban areas, the wind towers are around 20m high, and the reason for their height is because the wind is stronger higher from the ground.
Wind is created through changes in the atmosphere.
Changes in temperature and pressure cause air to circulate, thus forming wind.
Wind causes the rotors to spin. As they spin, the motion of the blades propels a generator that produces energy.
This energy is then processed through a transformer, and this increases its voltage before being utilized.
The wind does not have to be strong for the wind turbine to work.
Most blades start turning at a wind speed of 3-5 meters per second. The motion of the blades is referred to as kinetic energy.
There are a variety of wind turbine designs that are suited to specific conditions.
What are the advantages of wind turbines?
Wind turbines are cost-effective and much more affordable to produce than fossil fuels.
About 80% of the costs are capital costs required to install the wind turbines, and the remaining 20% cover operational costs, and wind turbines reduce the price uncertainty associated with fuel costs.
Wind turbines produce carbon-free energy, which helps curb the rise of global warming to under 1.5 degrees celsius.
The energy is pollution-free and safe for the environment.
Wind turbines have improved job creation in the U.S.
The wind sector employs over 100 000 staff, with the ability to support another 500 000 jobs.
A wind turbine technician is currently the fastest growing profession in America.
Wind turbines are a sustainable and reliable form of solar energy.
Wind is created as the sun heats the atmosphere. So as long as the sun shines and the wind blows, energy will be produced through wind turbines.
What are the downfalls of wind turbines?
Wind turbines need to compete with the cost of more economical traditional energy sources.
Despite wind turbines being affordable, there are still cheaper sources of electricity available.
Wind turbines are poorly located, and they are usually structured in remote areas, far from the cities where there is an electricity demand.
A solution is to build transmission lines to transport electricity from remote locations to the cities.
Wind turbines may create noise and aesthetic pollution.
The turbine’s rotors generate a certain degree of noise, while the tall tower is not very pleasant on the eye.
What is the cost of a wind turbine?
Wind turbines are the most affordable large-scale energy sources on the market.
The energy produced is renewable and reliable for the long term.
The cost of installation for one wind turbine can cost anything between $7 000 to $20 000. Prices vary according to the type of wind turbine you choose.
As you are now aware, wind turbines are efficient, and they are a reliable energy source producing sustainable and carbon-free energy.
They are cost-effective and will last for several years.
Now that you know how beneficial they are, we hope you consider moving to wind energy.