The Pros and Cons of Wind Energy Essay

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Wind power is a form of solar energy. Wind is created by unequal heating and cooling of the earth from the solar energy. The energy from the sun heats up the earth causing warmer air to rise. As this occurs, cooler air rushes in to replace the warmer air creating wind. Wind energy can be generated into electricity producing natural power using wind turbines. Wind turbines convert the kinetic energy in the wind into mechanical power which can be converted by a generator into electricity. This energy generated by the wind is considered renewable energy. This means that the source of power is naturally replenished. The renewable energy is natural and continuous in the environment.
Wind has been used for energy for thousands of years.
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Therefore the wind turbines can take advantage of better wind conditions.
So how does a wind turbine work? As the wind blows, the blades of a wind turbine begin to rotate. The blades act very similar to an airplane wing. Blowing air passes around both sides of the blade. The shape of the blade causes the air pressure to be uneven. The pressure is higher on one side of the blade and lower on the other which causes the blades to spin. The uneven pressure causes the blade to spin around the center of the turbine. On the top of the turbine, is a weather vane that is connected to a computer to keep the turbine turned into the wind so it captures the most energy. The blades are attached to a shaft which only turns about 18 revolutions per minute and that’s not nearly fast enough to generate electricity by itself. So the rotary shaft spins a series of gears that increase the rotation up to 1800 revolutions per minute. At that speed, a generator can produce a lot of electricity.
There are two main types of wind turbines: the horizontal axis turbine and the vertical axis turbine. The horizontal axis wind turbine has two or three blades that rotate around a parallel to the wind stream and the ground and are the most common type of turbine used today. Horizontal axis wind turbines are exclusively used in larger “utility-scale” turbines. They also have a wider operating speed range and are self-starting. A horizontal axis wind turbine consists of a blade or rotor, a…

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