In terms of physics, energy is an indirectly pragmatic quantity that comes in many types such as potential energy, radiant energy, solar energy, kinetic energy and wind energy. In simple words, it is a crucial element required for performing mechanical task. Mainly energy comes from two sources such as renewable or non renewable. Renewable sources are those which can be renewed again and again such as sunlight, rain, waves, tides, wind and geothermal heat. On the other hand, non renewable sources are those which cannot be used again such as fossil fuels, coal, petroleum and natural gas.
Wind is a renewable source of energy. The force produced by wind is termed as wind energy. Wind energy is used for producing electricity with the help of turbines. Turbines for Wind Power converts kinetic energy into mechanical energy with the help of wind forces. Wind power refers to the process of converting one form of energy into other. The device which is used for the process of wind power is known as wind power plant or wind turbine. The mechanical energy produced from wind turbine is used for many purposes such:
Wind power is consistently pure and completely renewable. It does not emit any harmful radiations, therefore it is clean process. It keeps the environment pollution free and healthy. Wind turbine consists of mainly two axis such as horizontal and vertical. Horizontal axis of wind turbines is equipped with electrical generator, blades and rotor shaft. Wind sensors are also there in large turbines. Turbine blades are specially designed for pushing purposes. Turbine blades are located at a significant distance in front of the tower and are twisted towards the wind forces. The blades are positioned in such a way that support is being provided to the tower. These turbines are used for commercial production of electric power in wind farms. These turbines are highly reliable and durable. They offer speed up to over 320 km/h (200 mph) and are highly efficient. Turbines are also accompanied with gear box, which is specifically used for speeding up the generators.
Also, there is a vertical axis twisted turbine. The vertical axis is mainly equipped with rotor shaft running perpendicularly. Gear box is placed at the bottom of the turbine. Following are the types of vertical axis of wind turbines such as:
Darrieus Wind Turbines: these are specially designed to create cyclic strain on the tower. This type is highly economical. It contains three turbine blades in it. The structure is placed on bottom up type.
Aerodynamic turbine: it is made up of airfoil and specifically designed for capturing kinetic energy. It provides an artificial current to the center. It has many advantages over large turbines. It may work in creeks, oceans, rivers and many more.
Also, there are many other types of vertical axis such as Giromill, Savonius Wind Turbine mills and many more.
Wind energy development environmental concerns include, noise, visual impacts, and avian and bat mortality.
Although wind power plants have relatively little impact on the environment compared to fossil fuel power plants, concerns have been raised over the noise produced by the rotor blades, visual impacts, and deaths of birds and bats that fly into the rotors (avian/bat mortality). These and other concerns associated with wind energy development are discussed below, and are addressed in the Wind Energy Development Programmatic EIS. To get more information about these concerns and access current research, please visit the suggested web sites listed on the Wind Energy Links page.
Like all mechanical systems, wind turbines produce some noise when they operate. Most of the turbine noise is masked by the sound of the wind itself, and the turbines run only when the wind blows. In recent years, engineers have made design changes to reduce the noise from wind turbines. Early model turbines are generally noisier than most new and larger models. As wind turbines have become more efficient, more of the wind is converted into rotational torque and less into acoustic noise. Additionally, proper siting and insulating materials can be used to minimize noise impacts.
Because they must generally be sited in exposed places, wind turbines are often highly visible; however, being visible is not necessarily the same as being intrusive. Aesthetic issues are by their nature highly subjective. Proper siting decisions can help to avoid any aesthetic impacts to the landscape. One strategy being used to partially offset visual impacts is to site fewer turbines in any one location by using multiple locations and by using today’s larger and more efficient models of wind turbines.
Bird and bat deaths are one of the most controversial biological issues related to wind turbines. The deaths of birds and bats at wind farm sites have raised concerns by fish and wildlife agencies and conservation groups. On the other hand, several large wind facilities have operated for years with only minor impacts on these animals.
To try to address this issue, the wind industry and government agencies have sponsored research into collisions, relevant bird and bat behavior, mitigation measures, and appropriate study design protocols. In addition, project developers are required to collect data through monitoring efforts at existing and proposed wind energy sites. Careful site selection is needed to minimize fatalities and in some cases additional research may be needed to address bird and bat impact issues.
While structures such as smokestacks, lighthouses, tall buildings, and radio and television towers have also been associated with bird and bat kills, bird and bat mortality is a serious concern for the wind industry.
Unlike most other generation technologies, wind turbines do not use combustion to generate electricity, and hence don’t produce air emissions. The only potentially toxic or hazardous materials are relatively small amounts of lubricating oils and hydraulic and insulating fluids. Therefore, contamination of surface or ground water or soils is highly unlikely. The primary health and safety considerations are related to blade movement and the presence of industrial equipment in areas potentially accessible to the public. An additional concern associated with wind turbines is potential interference with radar and telecommunication facilities. And like all electrical generating facilities, wind generators produce electric and magnetic fields.