Wind power 101
How it works
Wind turbines, like windmills, are mounted on a tower to capture the most energy. At 100 feet (30 meters) or more above ground, they can take advantage of the faster and less turbulent wind. Turbines catch the wind's energy with their propeller-like blades. Usually, two or three blades are mounted on a shaft to form a rotor.
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Wind power applications
Wind turbines can be used as stand-alone applications, or they can be connected to a utility power grid or even combined with a photovoltaic (solar cell) system. For utility-scale (megawatt-sized) sources of wind energy, a large number of wind turbines are usually built close together to form a wind plant. Several electricity providers today use wind plants to supply power to their customers.
Our favorite wind power links
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- Home turbines fail to deliver as promised, warns British study
- Sunrise power link promises clean energy
- The year renewable energy tipped the scales
- Obama says renewable energy is key to energy future
- South Africa turns to wind power
- Ontario's smart power grid
- Breakthrough in wind turbine design