Wind Energy Exercises

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Summary Wind energy is a clean, renewable source of energy. Only 1% of the total wind energy available is enough to fulfill all global energy needs, meaning wind is a potential source of an enormous amount of energy. The main drawback to wind energy is that it is noisy, intermittent, and to some unsightly. Other disadvantages cited are potential danger to birds, which may result in changes in migration patterns of some bird species, and shadow flicker – when moving blades cast shadow on nearby residences. However, wind turbine technology is undergoing rapid development: new composites have allowed substantial weight reduction, turbine noise is continually reduced, and new manufacturing technologies have allowed larger and larger blades-- making construction of multi megawatt turbines possible. At present, the average cost of production of electricity from wind energy is slightly higher than that from fossil fuel, but as demand for energy increases and fossil fuel sources deplete, the cost is rapidly becoming competitive with or even cheaper than those of nonrenewable sources of energy. Wind energy is expected to be a major energy source for most developing and island nations, as well as many developed European countries in the 21st century. Additional Information Books 1. Gipe P., Wind Energy Basics, —A comprehensive guide to modern small wind technology. AWEA ( 2. Elliott, D. et al., Wind Energy Resource Atlas of the United States, by American Wind Energy Association ( 3. Khennas, S., Small wind systems for rural energy services, London: ITDG Pub., 2003. Is wind energy practical for you? FYI ... A small wind electric system may work for you if: • Your house is thermally well-insulated. Making your house more energy efficient saves energy and money, thus requiring a smaller wind generator • There is enough wind where you live • You live in a house or ranch over one acre in size • Tall towers are allowed in your neighborhood • You have enough space • You are comfortable with long term investments • Your electricity cost is over $150 a month Reference: “Small Wind Electric Systems: A US Customer’s Guide”, Office of Energy Efficiency, U.S. Department of Energy, DOE/GO-102001-1293, October 2002. 60 Periodicals 1. Solar Energy, Direct Science Elsevier Publishing Company, the official journal of the International Solar Energy Society ®, is devoted to the science and technology of solar energy applications, and includes the indirect uses such as wind energy and biomass. 2. Home Power Magazine—bimonthly magazine for farm and home wind turbines ( Government Agencies and Websites 1. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Clearinghouse ( 2. National Wind Technology Center, National Renewable Energy Laboratory ( 3. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy: Wind Energy Technologies, US DOE ( Non-Government Organizations and Websites 1. American Wind Energy Association (


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