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History of wind power

3200 B.C. the ancient Egyptians invented the sail. Excluding modern times, a wind
powered boat has been the primary form of water transportation in all of human history.
Many people in history used wind power for boats. The Chinese reportedly invented the
windmill. West of China in Persia windmills were used around 200 BC. Around the 14th
century, the Dutch used passive wind power to pump water from flooded fields with a
device called a windmill. The windmill was the transition invention that led to modern wind
power turbines and other devices. French farmers used wind power to move water into
pools where it was used for irrigation. In 1854 a wind powered water pump was introduced
in the United States. By 1940 there were around 6 million windmills of the type introduced
in the United States almost a century earlier in 1854. Just as solar power technology
accelerated during the oil embargo of 1973 - 1974, wind power made large strides.
Westinghouse Electric Company received Department of Energy (DOE) / NASA contracts
for building large scale wind turbines. A 25% tax credit for investors of wind turbines was
made through the Public Utilities Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA) of 1978. Between 1981
and 1984 6,870 turbines were installed in California. At the end of 1983, there were around
4600 wind turbines operating out of California that together produced 300000 KW of
electricity. The change in prices of wind power electricity dropped from 14 cents per kWh in
1985 to 5 cents per kWh in 1994 making wind power a much greater competitor in the
electricity market.

How wind energy is stored and how

it is released

A simple way is by attaching the wind

powered generator to the electricity grid.
The added energy from the wind turbine
allows the equivalent amount of energy
stored in fossil fuels no to be burned and
the equivalent hydroelectric energy to
remain stored behind a dam.

Where and How Wind Energy is


The energy in the wind is converted to rotational motion by the rotor.

When the blades turn, the rotor turns a shaft, which transfers the
motion into the nacelle.
The slowly rotating shaft enters a gearbox that greatly increases the
rotation shaft speed.
The output shaft is connected to a generator that converts the
rotational movement into electricity at medium voltage (hundreds of
The electricity flows down a heavy electric cables inside the tower to
a transformer which increases the voltage of the electric power to
the distribution voltage (thousands of volts).
The electricity can now be sent to cities or farms.

1. The wind is free and with modern technology it can be captured efficiently.

2. Once the wind turbine is built the energy it produces does not cause green
house gases or other pollutants.
3. Although wind turbines can be very tall each takes up only a small plot of
land. This means that the land below can still be used. This is especially the
case in agricultural areas as farming can still continue.
4. Many people find wind farms an interesting feature of the landscape.
5. Remote areas that are not connected to the electricity power grid can use
wind turbines to produce their own supply.
6. Wind turbines have a role to play in both the developed and third world.
7. Wind turbines are available in a range of sizes which means a vast range of
people and businesses can use them. Single households to small towns and
villages can make good use of range of wind turbines available today.

1. The strength of the wind is not constant and it varies from zero to storm
force. This means that wind turbines do not produce the same amount of
electricity all the time. There will be times when they produce no electricity
at all.
2. Many people feel that the countryside should be left untouched, without
these large structures being built. The landscape should left in its natural
form for everyone to enjoy.
3. Wind turbines are noisy. Each one can generate the same level of noise
as a family car travelling at 70 mph.
4. Many people see large wind turbines as unsightly structures and not
pleasant or interesting to look at. They disfigure the countryside and are
generally ugly.
5. When wind turbines are being manufactured some pollution is produced.
Therefore wind power does produce some pollution.
6. Large wind farms are needed to provide entire communities with enough
electricity. For example, the largest single turbine available today can only
provide enough electricity for 475 homes, when running at full capacity.
How many would be needed for a town of 100 000 people?

Works Cited