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Home wind turbine Full Guide

home wind turbines

Producing electricity through an ecological system is possible thanks to the wind turbine, even for individuals. Environmentally friendly, wind energy uses the force of the wind, 100% natural and renewable. Producing electricity using this device therefore does not draw on the planet’s reserves.

In addition, a home wind turbine can be used equally well to supply energy to a house, urban accommodation, a holiday home, a caravan, a camper van, an isolated dwelling. Depending on the needs, it will power a single outlet or the whole house. Indeed, the capacity is variable according to the model, going from 100 W to 20 kW; the materials, as well as the size of the mast, also vary accordingly. And to gain energy and therefore autonomy, it is possible to combine it with another ecological electricity production system, such as solar photovoltaic

1.The energy of a wind turbine

power of a wind turbine

The energy of a home wind turbine is not comparable to that of Giant generators of power companies that we see flourish( horizontal wind turbines ). Its proportions, as well as the quantity of electricity produced, are adapted to the needs of users. Thus, depending on its proportions, the energy of a domestic wind turbine can cover almost all of a family’s electrical needs or be content to supply a few outlets, or even simply take over in the event of a power failure.

2.Producing energy, what is the process?

how a wind turbine prodce energy

The wind turbine uses the mechanical energy of the winds to spin a rotor, much like old windmills. This rotor is itself connected to a generator, which produces electricity, which must then be regulated to make it usable.

3.Which type do I need to use, vertical or horizontal axis wind turbine?

HAWT AND VAWT

A wind turbine includes a system for capturing the wind coupled to an electricity generator (like a dynamo): technically we speak of a wind generator.

It is divided into two categories, horizontal models and vertical models, which are distinguished by the orientation of their axis of rotation.

For more informations : Read Also Home wind turbines , best 5

1.Horizontal wind turbine

The horizontal wind turbine, or HAWT (“Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine”), basically works on the same principle as the wind turbines that can be seen in wind farms.

Advantages

The horizontal wind turbine is the solution generally adopted for the large wind turbine. For an individual, it has two main advantages: first, it has a very good performance since it captures a maximum of energy thanks to its self-orientation which allows it to adapt to the direction of the wind; then, being more widespread.

Disadvantages

The horizontal wind turbine responsible for many significant nuisances.

2.Vertical wind turbines

The vertical wind turbine is, for the moment, less widespread, but its performance equal to, or even superior to that of a conventional wind turbine, as well as its advantages of integration into the frame, of operation even with a weak wind and of occupancy. space makes it a very interesting solution, especially for home wind turbines.

Advantages

Its main asset is its ability to pick up light winds, so it does not need strong gusts or winds, even strong, to operate, because it does not orient itself in relation to the wind.

Plus, it takes up less space and works regardless of the wind direction. Note that it may be more difficult to obtain a vertical axis wind turbine, as the market is still small.

The efficiency of a wind turbine

The efficiency is defined by the nominal and maximum power (in kW), the triggering threshold by the starting speed (in m / s), the average wind speed for its operation by the nominal speed of the generator (in m / s) s), and the electricity produced by the average annual production (in kWh)…

4.Wind turbine components

wind turbine components

4.1.The Mast

mast of a wind turbine
The mast

In order to be efficient, the domestic wind turbine must pick up relatively strong.
To do this, it is necessary to place high enough. Thus, the blades, and


sometimes the generator is located at top of a mast or pylon: the
height varies from 10 to 35 m.

There are then two types of elements allowing the installation of the blades in height: mast and pylon.

  • Classic mast

The mast, a vertical rigid element, is generally reserved for wind turbines horizontal. Resistant, it must not
bend in the wind, and its structure does must not be able to be attacked by rust, fungi, mold …
This is why we use two types of materials: aluminum or a rust-resistant metal.

When designing, we start by deciding whether the mast will be installed on foundations or not: if the generator is located at the top, foundations are essentials.
In other cases, they are strongly recommended, because they allow ensuring its good anchoring in the ground. Thus, the wind turbine will not risk being uprooted by the wind.

  • Pylon
pylon

The pylon, an assembly of vertical elements, serves
to support the wind turbine, whether horizontal or
vertical. Just like the mast, it must be finely
anchored in the ground to resist the winds.


Aluminum is the material of choice
for construction, because it is resistant and against rust.
The negative point of this technique concerns
high-rise home wind turbines, as
the pylon is not aesthetic, all the less when he is high.

4.2 Blades

The blades of the wind turbine are fixed at the top of the mast, whether it is a model vertical or horizontal. Driven by the wind, their movement activates the generator which thus produces electricity.

The blades of a wind turbine must offer performance, in order to capture as much wind as possible, and safety, for do not to create damage in the event of a fall.

The blades must therefore combine several qualities: aerodynamics, lightness and balance.

In addition, most often, a home wind turbine consists of three blades, but it all depends on climatic conditions. Indeed, the fewer there are blades and the faster the wind turbine will turn.

4.2.1 Vertical Axis wind turbine

When it comes to vertical axis wind turbine blades, there are many possibilities. The Savonius wind turbine is the easiest to make. It is two half-cylinders fixed in staggered rows facing each other, or two opposing similar profiles that create a wave shape: the wind is there engulfs, thus producing the rotation. This type of blade is most often used to pump water because its limited speed still poses performance issues in power generation.


However, it works with very light winds and offers good resistance. to strong winds. The Darrieus wind turbine is more efficient, but also more complicated to achieve. These are vertical plates with an aerodynamic profile and which turn thanks to the wind.

4.2.3 Vertical Axis wind turbine

Regarding the blades of a horizontal axis wind turbine, these must capture the air, and so turn to put the generator in motion. For this, the models are most often modeled on the wings of an airplane. An angle
of attack
is carried out with care at the ends: between 3 and 6 ° at the end, and between 16 and 25 ° at
the start. Of course, these figures vary depending on the model and the force of the wind.


It is also possible to opt for flat blades, in planks light wood or thin sheet aluminum, with an 18 ° angle of attack. This solution, although much simpler to implement, since it does not involve any sculpting of the blades, is also less efficient.

What Material blades are designed with ?

designing a blade

For the manufacture of wind turbine blades, three materials are commonly used:
fiberglass, wood, and aluminum. The most efficient material, fiberglass is both strong and light. It involves, however, during construction, a certain technicality, starting with the creation of the mold in which it will be poured.

This is why we often prefer wood, easier to use and less expensive. On the other hand, vigilance, with wood, is essential, because it is more sensitive to moisture and more fragile if it has defects. So better
It is worth opting for a suitable species, a dry wood, without knots and without cracks.

Finally, aluminum, which has good strength and very appreciable longevity, is also technically difficult to use and requires suitable tools. PVC can also be used, but this solution is most often reserved for industrial wind turbines because the use of this material is technically complicated.

MaterialfiberglasswoodAluminum
ResistanceGood resistance to
severe weather
Average :
requires regular treatment
Very good
weightLightweightLightweight, according to gasolineLightweight, if used under thin sheet form
Sensitivity to
humidity
Rot-proof

Moisture resistance
limited
Rot-proof
Ease of setting
implemented
Difficult: necessity
to make a mold,
drying time
EasyVery difficult: requires
a tool and a technique
adapted
LongevityGood AverageGood
Price High LowVery high

4.3 Alternator

The alternator

The generator of a home wind turbine is an alternator, in other words, it produces an alternating electric current. Its operating principle relies on setting in motion a magnetic field created by magnets, thanks to the rotation of the blades. So the stronger the magnetic field is strong and the movement fast, the more it
there will be electricity produced.

4.4 The Battery

wind turbine battery

The role of the batteries is to store the electricity produced by the wind turbine, then redistribute it as needed. The battery thus serves as a buffer stock between the wind turbine and the electrical circuit of the house and provides a current constant at the exit despite variations in the wind.

Role of rectifier and charge regulator

Batteries cannot store than direct current. Now a wind turbine for a particular product alternating current, except in very rare cases where the generator chosen is not an alternator, but a dynamo. The current must
therefore be converted via a rectifier.

At the same time, to protect batteries against variations wind, a regulator is also essential. The best choice is therefore to opt for a regulator incorporating a rectifier. It then plays several roles: it transforms the current
alternating to direct current so that it can be stored in the batteries, and it protects the batteries by injecting them with a constant charge.

In addition, if the wind turbine produces too much current, the mechanism to avoid overvoltage in the batteries by regulating the intake. On the contrary, if the intake is too low, it will interrupt the charge, or even compensate for the lack of it is connected to a photovoltaic solar panel (it must then have a
photovoltaic input). Still, with the aim of protecting the batteries, the Plan also avoids a surcharge by cutting the intake when they are charge. Conversely, when they are about to be completely discharged,
it cuts the current after the batteries to prevent them from being completely empty.

4.4.1Type of the battery i need

Constantly charged batteries and deep charge batteries are the two options available to you
in terms of home wind turbines.

A.Deep Charge Batteries ( lead or gel )

deep charge bateries

Deep charge batteries (lead or gel) are the most suitable for a private wind turbine because they support multiplication perfectly charge and discharge cycles.

  • lead Batteries are less expensive but discharge if they are not used; they can also induce a risk of gas emissions or acid leaks.
  • Gel batteries, which are more expensive, are however more waterproof and have very little risk of acid leakage. In addition, their composition does not generate any danger of gas evolution. Finally, they are also effective at slow charging than fast, and discharging is faster.
B.Constant charge batteries
constantcharge batteries

The major problem is that they have a hard time being discharged. In order not to create any irreversible damage, this type of battery must not be discharged by more than 2 to 5%. In other words, they must be recharged continuously, as the charging and discharging phases cause significant damage. In fact, this solution is strongly not recommended for a home wind turbine, because its lifespan rarely exceeds
every 3 months.

key terms of solar batteries
Shiping date of solar batteries

You May like to read also ; What Factors effect on the life of a solar battery ?

4.5 The inverter

wind turbine inverter
The inverter

Before being able to use the direct current supplied by the batteries, it is necessary to transform it into a usable alternating current (220 V) using an inverter. Thicker and suitable cables are then necessary, in order to support the overheating due to direct current.

Function

the function of the inverter is to convert the stored direct current and distributed it by the batteries in alternating current. This step is essential because the power supply of a house runs on alternating current.

Power of the inverter of a home wind turbine


For a domestic wind turbine, the inverters models range from 75 W to 5 kW. It is then appropriate
to choose a power a little higher than his needs in order to not overload it. For example, a 750 W inverter is ideal for a consumption of 500 W. However, beware of overheating: the normal power of use, as well as the peak power, are mentioned on the packaging, be careful not to exceed them.

Part II

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