Wind turbines, on the other hand, like any machine, must be safeguarded against situations that might destroy them. Modern turbines are tough equipment that can generate energy in gusts of up to 55 mph. However, even these powerful machines can be damaged by winds over 50 miles per hour. If you live in an area where wind often blows at high speeds, you should consider installing protection into your system.
There are two types of protection for wind turbines: mechanical and electrical. Mechanical protections include shutters that can be opened or closed by the wind; they're used for older turbines that might not be designed for electrical connections or turbines located in areas where high winds are common. Electrical protections use sensors that detect high winds and then disconnect power to the turbine so it will not be damaged. This protection is required on all newer turbines but cannot always be installed because it requires access to the turbine's wiring system.
If you want to install either type of protection system on your own, here's what you need to know: shutters require regular maintenance and can be damaged by high winds, while electrical protections function very well and don't need regular checking, but they can only be installed by trained professionals.
Overall, shutters are easy to install and cost less than electronic protections, but they can also cause damage to your property if not maintained properly.
Wind turbines require a minimum wind speed (often 12–14 km/h) to start rotating and producing power. Strong winds (50–60 km/h) are necessary to generate at maximum capacity. Tides, storms, and other factors may cause fluctuations in wind speed and ability to produce energy.
On average, a wind-powered generator needs to be turning at about 3600 revolutions per minute (rpm) to produce enough electricity to run a typical light bulb. This means that on average, each meter of rotor diameter will need about 3.6 km/h of wind speed. It also means that your mileage will vary depending on how large you build your blades. Large-diameter blades can handle slower winds so they can produce less electricity but still provide some relief for the environment. Smaller blades are required when there is high demand for electricity but low wind speeds. They can be placed closer together which reduces the impact on the landscape.
The amount of electricity generated by a wind farm is very dependent on many factors such as type of blade, height of tower, location, etc. But generally speaking, an average-sized commercial wind farm will produce around 0.5 million kWh of electricity per year. This is enough to supply the lighting requirements for approximately 70 homes.
Electricity from wind farms does not come free of charge.
Most wind turbine drivetrains now employ generators linked to gearboxes to accelerate the rotation from the comparatively modest speed of the turbine's blades (usually 5–15 revolutions per minute for a contemporary machine) to the high speeds (1,000–1,800 rotations per minute) required to generate power. The most common type of gearbox used in this application is the epicyclic gearbox, which uses two parallel shafts and three planets on each shaft to provide multiple ratios between them. Each planet can rotate about its own axis or about an axis that is not aligned with either of the other two axes. Epicyclic gearboxes are more efficient than single-speed gearboxes because they can utilize different numbers of teeth on each component for different operating conditions. They also have fewer parts than single-speed gearboxes, which means they are less likely to fail.
Electric motors can also be used in place of gearboxes to drive wind turbines. These days, electric motors are almost always combined with gearboxes to produce various speeds reduction. However, electric motors are not usually sufficient to produce the high speeds required by modern wind turbines. Also, electric motors are more expensive than gearboxes, so they tend to be used only when cost is not a concern.
It is important to note that although wind turbines do use gearboxes to convert the rotational energy of the blade assembly into mechanical energy, they do not use conventional gearboxes found in automobiles or other machinery.
However, wind speed should not be too high since it causes turbines to spin too rapidly, causing them to commit suicide! Why is this the case? Because greater winds pull turbine blades off, excessive heat harms the alternator. The severe wind will have an effect on the turbine tower as well. These components are all made of steel or concrete and so they will get hot in strong winds. The steel inside a blade heats up when exposed to the air, which can cause it to fail by breaking away from the hub.
The fastest wind turbine recorded was in Germany in 1994 where it rotated at over 1000 rpm (60 Hz). This turbine had five blades and generated 40 kW (53 hp). It was designed and built by Siemens.
Wind energy technology has improved greatly since its inception. Modern turbines use composite materials for their blades, which are much lighter than steel blades. They are also larger in area and so generate more power per unit weight. Some modern-day turbines can rotate at rates of up to 10,000 rpm but this is only possible because they are powered by diesel generators which can still be found in some remote areas where there is no electricity supply. Wind speeds above 60 mph (97 km/h) can cause damage to small turbines. Larger ones can usually take winds of 100 mph (160 km/h). Tower collapses have been reported at wind speeds as low as 35 mph (56 km/h).
Wind turbines transform the wind's kinetic energy into clean power. As a result, modest wind electric systems are an excellent solution for rural regions that are not yet linked to the electric grid. These systems can produce all of their own electricity from the wind and still keep lights on and heaters running during off-hours by selling any extra power they don't need.
Remote location means less access to markets for your products and less possibility of damage from natural disasters (such as floods or earthquakes). By installing a wind turbine you can still use small appliances even if the electrical grid is down - although there will be times when there is no power so it's important to have batteries or fuel generators ready to run these devices.
There are many different types of wind turbines available on the market but they can be divided into two main categories: horizontal-axis and vertical-axis turbines. The hub of a horizontal-axis turbine is fixed in place while the blades rotate around it. This design is simpler to build and maintain than the more complex vertical-axis turbine which has a rotating hub that sits inside a ring shaped structure called the nacelle. Horizontal-axis turbines are also usually larger than vertical-axis models because they need to make more efficient use of the wind resource. However, this makes them harder to site accurately.