Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis

wind turbine systems horizontal axis, residential wind power, wind power generators, wind energy, wind power

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis

Discussion about the types of systems available and the advantages and disadvantages of each.

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Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis: Save Ten With Angie's List!

Wind energy technology has been with us for quite a while and modern systems have been in operation for many decades.

There has been lots of technology advancements with regards to wind energy systems and many of these innovations are now available to you, the homeowner.

There are many systems in development that are not yet ready for mainstream usage. So for right now we will discuss the 2 main systems, being the Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine Systems, and the Vertical Axis Wind Turbine Systems.

In This article we will discuss the Horizontal Axis Systems.

Airplane Prop

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis Resemble an Aircraft Propeller

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines (HAWT):

This is the most common type of wind generator that you will see used today for both residential and commercial usage.

They resemble an airplane propeller and they have a horizontal shaft that connects the propeller to an integral electrical generator, often housed within the same enclosure.

Usually horizontal axis wind generator systems are mounted on top of a tower or mast, located remotely from the turbulence generated by trees and structures, and high enough to get into clean air so as it is as efficient as possible.

Mast Height

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis- Mast Height

Mast height is determined by the site location and the recommendations of the manufacturer. For residential units you will see heights ranging from 30' to 70' and higher.

Another component of horizontal axis wind turbine systems is that they quite often have a wind vane on the back of the unit to point the propeller into the wind. This minimizes tower turbulence and points the propeller directly into the wind, giving the blades the most efficiency.

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis - Wind Resource Information:

Wind Powering America
Pages with wind maps, general small wind information

Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy
Lists tax and rebate incentives by state

State Wind Resource Maps

American Council on Renewable Energy
Works to bring all renewable energy into the mainstream of America's economy and lifestyle

Computer model for evaluating on- and off-grid power systems

American Wind Energy Association
Small wind information

Mast Height
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Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis- Mast Height Comparisons

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis - Advantages:

Most of these units come equipped with a variable blade pitch, which adjusts the angle of attack with which the blade meets the prevailing wind.

This works much like a variable pitch propeller-driven aircraft prop, which rotates each propeller blade to give the angle of attack the greatest efficiency.

Since these units are mounted on a tall tower or mast, they have access to winds of stronger velocities. Some sites can see power gains of up to 20 percent for each 35 feet that is gained in tower height.

Horizontal Axis units are typically more efficient than the vertical axis counterparts, as they do not suffer from backtracking.

These units are very quiet in operation and comply with most noise regulations put into place by neighborhood associations, but if you have to apply for a variance, you should be well prepared with noise level ratings for the unit you propose to install.

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis- Disadvantages:

Since the blades are often quite long and the towers are quite tall, transportation can account for a large proportion of the unit's cost.

The tall towers are difficult to install and may require the services of a large or tall crane for an adequate installation.

Some manufacturers have overcome some of these obstacles by offering jointed towers, which have a hinged joint at or near the center of the mast, which will allow it to be erected much easier and also allow for easier access, by lowering the generator to the ground.

Others have developed hinging mechanisms near the ground level which allow to mast to be raised simply by pulling it up with a truck. Check with your manufacturer for such options if this is of importance to you.

Being on tall towers, you may run into difficulties with approval from local residential associations and municipal building review agencies. As the wind turbines gain in popularity, so does their acceptance, so a variance may be sought and quite often approved, if you hire a professional to handle the procedure for you.

It is advised that you check out the requirements of your local neighborhood association and the local building authority and get the zoning information prior to buying your property..

During periods of extreme wind loading there can be tremendous stress placed on the wind turbines. When you purchase a unit be sure that it has an auto-cutoff system that will prevent the system from going over its rated power output and protect the system. Any competent manufacturer supplies this system as a standard feature of their units.

It has been reported that bird strikes have been significant with HAWT systems. If this is a real concern of yours, you could look into the possibility of ultrasonic bird repellers, such as the Bird-Xpeller PRO. These units are silent to humans, but will repel birds for a particular area without harming the birds.

Wind Turbine Systems Horizontal Axis - Where You Go From Here:

We will be developing a lot of useful information as it relates to Wind Generation. Here are some of the articles coming up shortly.

Wind Generators
Wind Generator Components
Wind Turbine Systems - Horizontal Axis
Wind Generator Systems - Vertical Axis
Wind Generators Where to Start.