How to build a wind turbine
Electricity does not come cheap and can severely affect the beer money fund. Renewable energy is on the rise with most governments setting quotas for energy coming from renewable resources (for environmental, not beer reasons). One such option is wind turbines, with wind farms helping several countries meet their quota. The technology is nothing extraordinary, though. In fact, you can easily build one yourself as this article will show you. Depending on your level of expertise, you can either buy components from a store or build everything yourself – making this a fun weekend project.
Breaking it down
There are five different constituent parts to a wind turbine as follows; generator, blades, mounting, tower, and an ECS (Electronic Control System). You will, of course, also need wind with the best breeze being at 20 to 30 km/h.
Before getting started, you should always check with the local authorities that erecting a wind turbine does not break any laws. After all, you will not be able to save any turtles behind bars. With that cleared, it’s time to look at what you will need to turn wind into power.
Generator and AC/DC (not the band)
The generator is what turns motion into actual electricity. As such, it makes an integral part of the setup. Whilst some people build their own generators, if you are new to this you might want to purchase one. If you plan on using an AC generator (which is what appliances use) do keep in mind you might not be able to generate an electric field that is strong enough. If you plan on using a DC generator, you’ll need to factor in an inverter to produce AC.
Blades so good you can shave with
Blades need to take into consideration the design of the wind turbine, paying special attention to both size and pitch. The blades can either be bought ready-made from a store or be carved out of wood or cut from PVC pipe. If doing them yourself, ensure that the overall configuration works for the kind of setup you have. After all, the blades are what is going to make the whole thing work.
Mounting aka LEGO for grownups
The mounting is made up of a number of parts including hub, motor, and a tail. The blades attach to the hub which in turn attaches to the mounting. The hub attaches to the motor with a tail at the opposite end ensuring that the blades always face the wind (a wind turbine would not be much use if it just flaps around in the wind). Ensure that there is room to attach the finished mounting to the tower by way of a bearing and you’re good to go.
Tower of power
The tower will hold the head high into the wind where hopefully it’ll turn and spin generating enough electricity. Make sure the tower is sturdy enough that it can bear the load without going down. After all, it needs to work in the wind and not come crashing down to the ground.
Electronic Control System
The ECS consists of batteries, a diode to keep the batteries from powering the motor (defeats the whole purpose), and a secondary load for when the batteries get full. Finally, a charge controller runs everything making sure power is wielded correctly.
And that pretty much concludes our wind-turbine tutorial, It’ll be a great project for a man of your caliber, and you’ll save a ton of cash to boot. Here are all the nitty-gritty details.
And now that you’re going to be saving some money, why not put it to work for you and re-invest it for your future. In this article, we talk about if the smart money is being invested in electric cars