Wind power has a lot of potential. Putting clean energy into homes across the UK. But what are we moving to do around it? Quite a few. We’re investing, coming up with new ideas, and giving some of the much-needed new, affordable, and low-carbon electricity to the UK.
Take a glance at the most important things
Wind power: What is it?
The wind is a type of energy from the sun. Many things make wind happen, like how the sun heats the air in different places, how the earth moves, and how fast it moves. Wind turbines can use current to make electricity.
As you can see, wind power works
Energy from the wind can be turned into electricity by using wind turbines. A generator is then used to turn the mechanical power into electricity, used to power homes and businesses across the United Kingdom.
How good is wind power?
Most of the time, a wind turbine is about 30 to 45 percent efficient, but that number rises to 50 percent when there is a lot of wind. If wind turbines were 100% efficient, the wind would stop completely after it passed through the turbine, so it would be impossible to get any wind at all. In the UK, wind turbines usually make electricity 70% to 80% of the time. This makes them a reliable source of power all year long.
A wind turbine is a machine that moves the wind
A wind turbine is very opposing to a fan in every way. The people don’t use electricity to make wind, but they use current to produce electricity. During strong winds, the blades turn. This doesn’t have to be the case. This movement turns a rotor, which moves a generator. Kinetic energy used to make electricity comes from this movement.
It turns the wind into electricity
Wind turbines work because they are hit by the wind and move when it moves (which can be as little as 3-5 meters per second). The wind then moves the blades of a turbine around a rotor, which carries a generator and makes electricity, then the wind moves the edges again.
The wind has a lot of power. If you’ve ever passed a kite or sailed, you’ll know. There is nothing new about taking advantage of the wind’s energy. Windmills have been used worldwide for hundreds of years to grind flour or power machinery. And wind-powered boats have been around for a very long time, too. This means there is enough wind power to make a lot of electricity. How do other factors get involved in producing electricity from wind turbines?
Choose the best place to go
As with many natural energy sources, they aren’t always the same. Winds can drop, blow too hard, or be very gusty. None of these things are good for wind turbines, so they need to be careful. For this reason, you need to find a place where the wind strength will stay the same the whole time you’re there.
The wind is affected by the hills, valleys, forests, and buildings in the area where it comes from. Wind turbines should be in flat, high, and unobstructed places. This is why there are a lot of wind farms that aren’t near the coast. You’ll also see turbines on top of hills. Belgium and the Netherlands are good places for wind farms because there isn’t much to stop the wind flow.
Face the wind
Every wind turbine has a sensor that tells how the wind is coming. The nacelle is the streamlined structure behind the blade. It has the parts that turn the top of the system, putting the edges in the best position for the strongest wind. There are brakes on wind turbines when the wind is too strong, so they don’t get hurt.
There are wind farms all over the planet
We put all of our wind turbines together to make a lot of electricity. The power is then sent to the national utility grid, and renewable energy is sent to thousands of our customers’ homes in the UK. This is how it works:
The life of a wind turbine is how long it lasts
Wind farms can be built more quickly than any other power plant. Six months is the average time to build a wind farm that can produce 50 MW of electricity. These things are made to last between 20 and 25 years. They are made to be durable. During this time, some parts may need to be changed.
A look at what the future of renewable energy will look like
We have more than 1 GW of renewable energy projects in the planning and development stages. That’s 1000 MW of power. 7.2 MW can power up to 4,00 homes when it comes to power. A group called EDF Renewables has a vast wind farm in Europe. The 177 MW Dorenell wind farm is near Dufftown in the Scottish Highlands. It has a lot of power:
Our long-term plan: What’s next?
We’ve worked with the communities where our wind farms are located to help them see what the future holds. This is how:
- At Burnhead, we are making apprenticeships.
- A fund at Corriemoillie is being built up to help with local education and training for the wind farm’s life.
- 50 years ago, the environment fund at Fallago Rig was started. Since then, the fund has given out more than $1 million to many local projects in the Scottish Borders.