How does a wind generator work?

Written by john albers
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How does a wind generator work?

A wind generator is better known as a wind turbine; the term “wind generator” implies a fan device that creates wind. In fact, a wind turbine is designed to convert wind into electrical energy. Wind is a phenomenon that might be classified as a solar energy. It is caused by differences in air temperature resulting from uneven solar heating. The earth’s rotation is a factor as well. The presence and strength of wind can be modified by such things as terrain and the presence of large bodies of water. For these reasons, there are certain parts of the world that experience consistent strong winds, which wind turbines are designed to take advantage of.

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Every turbine is placed high in the air at the top of a large pole. The turbine looks similar to an aeroplane engine prior to the invention of jets. At the forefront is a large propeller, behind which is an enclosed casing. Inside this casing is a rod from the propeller leading to a gearbox. Connected to the back of the gear box is an electrical generator. Raised from the back of the casing is an electronic wind gauge connected to the generator for power. Beneath the casing, inside the top of the pole is a device called a yaw motor, atop which is welded the casing, standing free from the pole.

How Does a Wind Turbine Work?

Incoming winds brush past the curved edges of the propeller, turning it as they go. The turning propeller rod initiates the gearbox, translating a slow but high-torque turning motion into a very fast but low-torque motion in a gear extending from the gearbox to another gear that is connected to the generator. The two gears turn, generating a continuous electrical charge. This charge is used to power the wind gauge, which is able to determine from which direction the wind is coming. The gauge sends a signal down to the yaw motor, making the casing and entire propeller turn to face the wind directly, regardless of how the wind changes. The excess electricity is sent down a cable threading through the centre of the pole to the ground. From here the cable connects to a large battery connected to the local power grid to serve the electrical needs of the local populace.

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