WilloWind Energy is a developer and operator of wind farms in the UK

WILLOWIND ENERGY

How Wind Turbines Work

How Wind Turbines Work Diagram


Harnessing the power of the wind is an ancient concept, for example in the sails of boats to carry them on the sea and in the vanes of windmills to produce food. The technology behind wind turbines has evolved since and there are a variety wind turbine models in the market of different sizes. 

Wind turbines differ by different designs and from different manufacturers. Below is a brief and high level overview of how this technology works for an average vertical wind turbine.

 

                                                                                                                                    Photo from RenewableUK

  1. The tower is usually tubular and made from steel. It supports the nacelle and rotor
  2. As the wind blows it creates kinetic energy to push the blades of the wind turbine round
  3. As the blades turn, they turn the shaft inside the nacelle
  4. The shaft spins the generator causing the generator to produce electricity from the rotational energy
  5. The energy then goes through a transformer to convert the electricity into a form suitable for distribution
  6. The electricity generated can then be connected to the national grid and sent to power homes all over the country

Wind turbines are designed so that they measure the wind direction and adjust the head to move the turbine into the wind once the wind speed reaches a minimum predetermined level.     In case of excessively high wind speeds the wind turbines are fitted with brakes in the nacelle.