Shipping firms look to sail into the future

Global shipping firms under pressure to cut carbon emissions are experimenting with an age-old technology: sails to harness ocean winds and reduce reliance on costly fuels.

NASA data stares into the eye of powerful hurricane Lorenzo

Satellite data has confirmed that Lorenzo is a major hurricane in the eastern North Atlantic Ocean with an impressive structure. NASA's Terra Satellite provided a visible image of Lorenzo that revealed a clear eye and a solid ...

'Catastrophic' Dorian pounds Bahamas, US evacuates coast

Monster storm Dorian came to a near stand-still over the Bahamas Monday, prolonging the agony as surging seawaters and hurricane winds made a shambles of low-lying island communities and spurred mass evacuations along the ...

Hurricane heads for Florida after brushing Caribbean islands

Hurricane Dorian moved out over open waters early Thursday after doing limited damage in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, though forecasters warned it was gaining strength and probably would grow into a dangerous storm ...

A new material for the battery of the future

Renewable sources of energy such as wind or photovoltaic are intermittent; production peaks do not necessarily follow the demand peaks. Storing green energy is therefore essential to moving away from fossil fuels. The energy ...

page 1 from 23

Wind power

Wind power is the conversion of wind energy into a useful form, such as electricity, using wind turbines. At the end of 2008, worldwide nameplate capacity of wind-powered generators was 121.2 gigawatts (GW). Wind power produces about 1.5% of worldwide electricity use, and is growing rapidly, having doubled in the three years between 2005 and 2008. Several countries have achieved relatively high levels of wind power penetration, such as 19% of stationary electricity production in Denmark, 11% in Spain and Portugal, and 7% in Germany and the Republic of Ireland in 2008. As of May 2009, eighty countries around the world are using wind power on a commercial basis.

Large-scale wind farms are connected to the electric power transmission network. Smaller turbines are used to provide electricity to isolated locations. Utility companies increasingly buy back surplus electricity produced by small domestic turbines. Wind energy as a power source is attractive as an alternative to fossil fuels, because it is plentiful, renewable, widely distributed, clean, and produces no greenhouse gas emissions; however, the construction of wind farms (as with other forms of power generation) is not universally welcomed due to their visual impact and other effects on the environment.

Wind power is non-dispatchable, meaning that for economic operation all of the available output must be taken when it is available, and other resources, such as hydropower, and standard load management techniques must be used to match supply with demand. The intermittency of wind seldom creates problems when using wind power to supply a low proportion of total demand. Where wind is to be used for a moderate fraction of demand, additional costs for compensation of intermittency are considered to be modest.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA