When wanting to reduce energy cost, the idea of installing a wind turbine seems a good one. If you have purchased one do you have to have a qualified electrician to wire it? or, Is it something a ...
This is a basic electromechanical problem I solve every week for clients and frankly I am a little swamped, so let me share with you about a few considerations for wind power. It is quite lucrative, if you can swing it.
1. Do you have enough wind to make it practical to employ a wind generator? An anerometer and direction indicator will be your first resource to determine if it will be feasible. Usually, it is not unless you live on a plain or near the ocean, where the wind is both constant and above 15 MPH average.
2. Can you maintain full reliabiity your power generation facility? That, good folks and gentle people, makes you a joint feasor with your state and power utility. You must maintain your generators, step-up transformers, and phasing circuitry, to assure safe and reliable delivery of power to your local grid. It is easier said than done. And training is absolutely essential. You would be amazed how many people cannot understand what electrical flash can do.
3. Are you willing to take the training to fully understand the workings of power generation? It is a six-week in-residence course hosted by the Department of Energy and they are picky who they accept. It will cost you about $1,200.00, plus meals, and you will have to devote yourself to electricity 16 hours a day. Even that is not enough but we must start somewhere.
4. Do you have the money to develop and maintain your system, including fossil fuel backup for your lack of wind? That means a very big diesel powerplant, fuel to run it 96 hours, and regular system tests to assure faultless reliability.
If you answered no to any of these questions, it is probably better that you stay on the grid as a consumer.
You don't get constant wind if you live near the ocean. You can have fog and a flat calm. However there will be times of the day when you can expect a sea breeze that is fairly steady.
You don't need a diesel generator if you are hooked to the electric grid. You can be consuming electricity when it's calm and generating when it's windy.
Oceanic wind is the steadiest that we have: it will vary far less than any other tropospheric flow. The next option for wind power is a desert mountainside with reliable thermal updraft.
Commercial power producers make quite good money but they must produce 3-phase and backfeed it into the grid at the utility's voltages. We don't have enough fossil fuel to do that forever, hence nuclear power makes so much sense.
The real issue is not the technology, but the fuel. Uranium and Plutonium are ferocious and unforgiving if mishandled. Thorium is a much cleaner and more docile workhorse.
The problem with most nuclear generating plants is that they are turning nuclear weapons into docile industrial power. Uranium and Plutonium plants use only enough of the power in existing thermonuclear weapon pits to disable them, denature the remains with Americium, and then store this nasty stuff away in chryolite deposits -- known to absorb and sequester radioactive metals.
We have enough weapon pits from the Soviet Union and China to power the United States, Canada, and Mexico, for the next 125 years at least. Turning that sword into a docile plowshare makes a great deal of sense.