How Wind Turbines Work

  • DOI: 10.1002/chemv.201200007
  • Author: ChemViews
  • Published Date: 07 February 2012
  • Source / Publisher: International Energy Agency, US Department of Energy, US National Energy Education Development Project (NEED), Renewable Energies Agency
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim
thumbnail image: How Wind Turbines Work
Since 1980, the diameter of the rotors of wind turbines has doubled each decade, and therefore increased the turbine height. Each generation of turbines was predicted to be the biggest, but turbines keep growing in an effort to capture the stronger winds accessible at higher elevations, and improve performance. New materials have made this possible.
Size and Power Evolution of Wind Turbines Over Time

Size and Power Evolution of Wind Turbines Over Time

Internal Workings of a Wind Turbine

Internal Workings of a Wind Turbine

Turbine Size Changes with Position

Land and sea breezes resulting from the different rates of heating of land and water mean average wind speeds on the coast are slightly above those inland. Therefore, offshore wind farms can generate the same amount of power with a smaller rotor.

Land and Sea Breezes

Turbine Size Changes with Position

Turbine Size Changes with Position

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