Wind Power Facts

Charles asks…

Countries like India and China need to do something to address the environmental pollution issue?

India and China are powering ahead with their development projects, however it is time to address the environmental pollution issue. It is understandable that both these countries need energy to fuel their projects. However the fact remains at what cost? World over countries are adoptind major reforms to start out with technologies like coal trapping or research into reneweable energy resources like solar tidal and wind power.If these technologies are too costly, China and India would be capable of making it available at cheaper costs.It is high time that every country starts working on ways to reduce green house gas emissions and implement ways to save the earth.

Windmill Farms answers:

I have lived in China for almost 10 years now, this place is polluted beyond your imagination, they don’t have “clean” factories, in fact last year a chemical factory leaked into the Song Hua river up north, it was kept a secret until fish by the thousands started to wash up on shore, over 100 city water supplies were in danger of being contaminated, China’s coal mines are the worst in the world, I ride the ferry across the river and people are throwing their trash over the sides, everyone is interested in the $$$ and no one cares about the environment, there is little chance in my mind of the Chinese getting interested in cleaning up the environment any time soon

Richard asks…

Is it true that power cannot be stored by any means?

I went into discussion with someone who said there is no source to store power.I argued that power is stored in batteries or solar power and wind power is also stored. But he denied this fact.
What is meaning of power? Are gas or petrol are also included in this meaning ?

Windmill Farms answers:

We can’t create energy. Because energy neither created nor destroyed.
We can only convert energy from one form to another. For example:
1. Hydro Power – Kinetic energy into Electrical Power
2. Fan – Electrical power into Mechanical + Heat
3. Tube light – Electrical power into Light Energy + Heat
4. Solar Power — Light Energy into Electrical power

Petrol & Gas are like heap of energy which can be converted into another form by using different technologies.
The energy can be sotred in Kinetic, Potential, Electrical, Chemical form by means of source.

Laura asks…

Are there any other environmentally friendly Energy sources other than Gas that works any and everywhere?

There is The Gasoline made of Water and Air, yes it’s VERY possible. It’s EXCELLENT, but it’s newly developed and only 1.3 gallons are produced per 3 months so it’s not entirely dependable due to the fact that it’s kinda rare. So, do you guys know any other energy sources that can replace Gasloline? Don’t say Hydro electric power or wind powered stuff. That’s complete crap and it doesn’t work EVERYWHERE at any time.

Windmill Farms answers:

>There is The Gasoline made of Water and Air, yes it’s VERY possible

That’s not a source of energy, it’s a very expensive way to store energy. The problem is that the process takes more energy to produce the fuel than you get back when your burn it.

Where would you get all this “environmentally friendly” energy to run the process?

Unless you are operating a nuclear aircraft carrier, the concept cannot make economic sense. (If you are operating a nuclear aircraft carrier, then manufacturing jet fuel rather than being dependent on supply ships looks interesting!)

It most certainly doesn’t work “any and everywhere”, just places where there plenty of power available and the desire to make extremely expensive gasoline or related products.

> So, do you guys know any other energy sources that can replace Gasloline?

The technology to convert coal to gasoline was developed in the 1920′s. If you had to make synthetic gasoline from something other than fossil fuel, it’s hard to believe that using some intermediate biological product wouldn’t make more economic sense.

Or for that matter, no new technology is needed to build engines that run on vegetable oil. And cars that can run on pure ethanol are already in mass production.

The problem with all of these alternatives is cost and their own environmental impacts. How much are you willing to spend for this alternative? At $100/gallon there would be all sorts of alternatives.

Even Sandia Labs CR5 concept starts to look good.

Perhaps you can come up with electricity that is “too cheap to meter”, like was predicted for nuclear power in the 1950′s. That might make this process practical.

Susan asks…

What do you think the best alternate energy source is?

It’s obvious that the current major source of energy (petroleum) is non-renewable, so it won’t last forever. Which source do you think America/the rest of the world should move towards?

Solar power is good, but expensive to set up. Wind power is also very good, but so many people are worried about the windmills ruining the view of the landscape.
Nuclear power seems to be a very good option, but many people are worried about the byproducts or the chance of a meltdown disaster. What they don’t realize is that our technology has advanced to protect us from accidents.

As far as I know, the best option seems to be hydrogen power, as you can get hydrogen from water (which covers 3/4 of the earth), and the only byproduct is water.

Windmill Farms answers:

Nuclear power is the only option, at least in the short term. But the very same ppl who want us to quit using ‘fossil fuels’ cry about nuclear power being unsafe. The fact is that power generation of any kind is unsafe for someone. Coal mining is dangerous for miners, oil drilling is dangerous for all of civilization due to the terrorist states that possess the oil, etc.
In short, there is no completely safe way to convert from one kind of energy to another. France gets 75% of its power from nuclear plants. Why can’t we?
Hydrogen would be nice, but with current technology, it takes more energy to extract the hydrogen from water than the hydrogen yields when used.

Helen asks…

why are the environmentalist blocking wind power?

why are the environmentalist blocking wind power? in some parts of the usa. You would think they would want wind power everywhere. They say wind power kill birds. those blades move to slow to kill a birds i think. There also blocking solar power in the desert. why?

Windmill Farms answers:

What are your facts? I have not heard of any environmentalist blocking wind power. I have heard that some birds do die because of the blades, they are very big blades and they can move fast, but I believe there are new solutions to those problems now. Real environmentalists want green power.

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Vertical Wind Power Systems

Laura asks…

wind shear problems in flight training?

have any flight students ever encountered any wind shear problems during takeoff or landing? If so, how bad were they? what are some avoidance things you can do?

Windmill Farms answers:

Since you’re talking about flight students I’ll assume you’re concerned with the best way to handle windshear in a light, prop powered, training aircraft such as a Cessna 172, Piper Archer/Arrow, etc.

The first thing is you don’t even want to be flying if you think there’s significant windshear at low altitude. Most airlines prohibit operations if windshear causes more than +/- 15 knots airspeed variation on the approach. Small training aircraft have so little excess power that their ability to deal with any kind of significant windshear is virtually nonexistent. (For example, most trainers climb at around 500-750 fpm with an indicated airspeed of 60-75 knots. The type of windshear associated with a thunderstorm can easily give you +/- 45 knots and several thousand feet per minute vertically).

With that being said there are several things you can do to improve your odds when windshear is possible.

During takeoff:
1. Use the longest available runway.
2. Use a runway pointed away from the source of the windshear even if it means taking off with a slight tailwind.
3. Use maximum available power.
4. Rotate at a higher airspeed. Build the airspeed up ON THE GROUND. Once you’re in the air climb out at your normal climb angle and the extra speed will gradually bleed off. What you’re doing is putting airspeed “in the bank” in case you DO encounter windshear. (I’ll explain the advantage of this extra speed later). Don’t climb out at a shallow angle in order to keep your speed up, though.
5. Use the minimum flap setting.

During approach:
1. Select a runway that best avoids the source of windshear.
2. Use a higher approach speed.
3. Don’t let the airplane float even though you’re using a higher speed. Just use a minimal flare, get the airplane on the ground and get it stopped. If there’s windshear in the area the winds are probably pretty gusty and you don’t want to be hanging out 5 feet off the ground at low airspeed.
4. Use minimum flap setting.
5. If you see a dramatic increase in your airspeed GO AROUND. This is very likely an indication of an equally dramatic speed decrease which will most likely put you in an unrecoverable situation. (Don’t rely on always getting this warning of an impending speed decrease. Windshear is unpredictable and your airspeed could decrease at any time). If you see a smaller increase in speed (5-10 knots) don’t reduce power in an attempt to get back on speed. You can go ahead and pitch down (the airplane will tend high on the glidepath with the increase in airspeed) but, for the time being just accept the higher speed – it will probably go away on its own. If you slow down and THEN the extra 10 knots goes away you could find yourself very slow.

If you do find yourself in a windshear situation don’t worry about holding a constant airspeed. This is completely opposite of normal training where you want to climb out and fly your approaches at a constant speed but in a windshear encounter it may get you killed. Give it full power and use your extra speed to get altitude. This means bleeding your airspeed off close to a stall but you have to do it. (You’re trading kinetic energy – speed – for potential energy – altitude. Because the speed term is squared in the kinetic energy equation a little speed converts to a lot of altitude. Conversely, if you attempt to hold airspeed constant you’ll have to give up A LOT of altitude to regain any speed you have lost).

The airliner I fly has a very sophisticated windshear avoidance system that takes many factors into account (altitude, vertical speed, airspeed, and the rate of change of those parameters) in order to calculate the optimum pitch attitude. All we have to do is fly the flight director commands and we know we’re doing the best job possible.

If this system is inoperative we’re taught to initially pitch 15-degrees nose up and from there continue to increase pitch until the stick shaker (stall warning) activates. I just wanted to prove to you that successful windshear escape means flying very close to a stall.

I know that’s a lot of info. If you (or anyone else) needs anything clarified just e-mail me.

Sandy asks…

which way to the winds blow over costa rica?

Looking at satelite, I don’t know if they are going east to west or west to east.

Windmill Farms answers:

On planet earth winds ALL tend to travel from west to east. On Venus its east to west….just read that this morning.

Carlos,,,,we are not speaking of weather anomolies….while certain storm patterns can travel in opposite directions…east to west…north to south….THE PREDOMINATE weather patterns on planet Earth are west to east….just look at any global mapping system. True, equatorial and other “influences” can alter the massive behavior but the fact remains winds travel, by and large west to east. Our weather in the US is pretty much dictated by the weather in Hawaii and Japan….ITS A FACT not BS!!!

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(Redirected from Winds)
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For other uses, see Wind (disambiguation).
Wind is the roughly horizontal movement of air (as opposed to an air current) caused by uneven heating of the Earth’s surface. It occurs at all scales, from local breezes generated by heating of land surfaces and lasting tens of minutes to global winds resulting from solar heating of the Earth. The two major influences on the atmospheric circulation are the differential heating between the equator and the poles, and the rotation of the planet (Coriolis effect).

Given a difference in barometric pressure between two air masses, a wind will arise between the two which tends to flow from the area of high pressure area of low pressure until the two air masses are at the same pressure, although these flows will be modified by the Coriolis effect in the extratropics.

Winds can be classified either by their scale, the kinds of forces which cause them (according to the atmospheric equations of motion), or the geographic regions in which they exist. There are global winds, such as the wind belts which exist between the atmospheric circulation cells. There are upper-level winds, such as the jet streams. There are synoptic-scale winds that result from pressure differences in surface air masses in the middle latitudes, and there are winds that come about as a consequence of geographic features such as the sea breeze. Mesoscale winds are those which act on a local scale, such as gust fronts. At the smallest scale are the microscale winds which blow on a scale of only tens to hundreds of metres and are essentially unpredictable, such as dust devils and microbursts.

Winds can also shape landforms, via a variety of eolian processes.

Contents [hide]
1 Winds by spatial scale
1.1 Prevailing winds — the general circulation of the atmosphere
1.2 Seasonal winds
1.3 Synoptic winds
1.4 Mesoscale winds
1.5 Microscale winds
2 Winds by effect
3 Local winds that are tied to specific temperature distributions
4 Winds that are defined by an equilibrium of physical forces
5 Considerations for power generation
6 Names for specific winds in certain regions
7 Meteorological instruments to measure wind speed and/or direction
8 See also
9 External links

Winds by spatial scale
Prevailing winds — the general circulation of the atmosphere

Global wind systemsPrevailing winds are winds which come about as a consequence of global circulation patterns. These include the Trade Winds, the Westerlies, the Polar Easterlies, and the jet streams.

Because of differential heating and the fact that warm air rises and cool air falls, there arise circulations that (on a non-rotating planet) would lead to an equator-to-pole flow in the upper atmosphere and a pole-to-equator flow at lower levels. Because of the Earth’s rotation, this simple situation is vastly modified in the real atmosphere. In almost all circumstances the horizontal component of the wind is much larger than the vertical — the exception being violent convection.

The Trade Winds are the most familiar consistent and reliable winds on the planet, exceeded in constancy only by the katabatic winds of the major ice sheets of Antarctica and Greenland. It was these winds that early mariners relied upon to propel their ships from Europe to North and South America. Their name derives from the Old English ‘trade’, meaning “path” or “track”, and thus the phrase “the wind blows trade”, that is to say, on track.

The Trades form under the Hadley circulation cell, and are part of the return flow for this cell. The Hadley carries air aloft at the equator and transports it poleward north and south. At about 30°N/S latitude, the air cools and descends. It then begins its journey back to the equator, but with a noticeably westward shift as a result of the action of the Coriolis force.

Along the east coast of North America, friction twists the flow of the Trades even further clockwise. The result is that the Trades feed into the Westerlies, and thus provide a continuous zone of wind for ships travelling between Europe and the Americas.

The Westerlies, which can be found at the mid-latitudes beneath the Ferrel circulation cell, likewise arise from the tendency of winds to move in a curved path on a rotating planet. Together with the airflow in the Ferrel cell, poleward at ground level and tending to equatorward aloft (though not clearly defined, particularly in the winter), this predisposes the formation of eddy currents which maintain a more-or-less continuous flow of westerly air. The upper-level polar jet stream assists by providing a path of least resistance under which low pressure areas may travel.

The Polar Easterlies result from the outflow of the Polar high, a permanent body of descending cold air which makes up the poleward end of the Polar circulation cell. These winds, though persistent, are not deep. However, they are cool and strong, and can combine with warm, moist Gulf Stream air transported northward by weather systems to produce violent thunderstorms and tornadoes as far as 60°N on the North American continent.

Records of tornadoes in northerly latitudes are spotty and incomplete because of the vast amount of uninhabited terrain and lack of monitoring, and it is certain that tornadoes have gone unseen and unreported. The deadly Edmonton tornado of 1987, which ranked as an F4 on the Fujita scale and killed 27 people, is evidence that powerful tornadoes can occur north of the 50th parallel.

The Edmonton, Canada tornado of 1987 is evidence that powerful tornadoes can develop at high latitudes.The jet streams are rapidly moving upper-level currents. Travelling generally eastward in the tropopause, the polar jets reside at the juncture of the Ferrel cell and the Polar cell and mark the location of the polar cold front. During winter, a second jet stream forms at about the 30th parallel, at the interface of the Hadley and Ferrel cells, as a result of the contrast in temperature between tropical air and continental polar air.

The jet streams are not continuous, and fade in and out along their paths as they speed up and slow down. Though they move generally eastward, they may range significantly north and south. The polar jet stream also marks the presence of Rossby waves, long-scale (4000 – 6000 km in wavelength) harmonic waves which perpetuate around the globe.

Seasonal winds
Seasonal winds are winds that only exist during specific seasons, for example the Indian monsoon.

Synoptic winds
Synoptic winds are winds associated with large-scale events such as warm and cold fronts, and are part of what makes up everyday weather. These include the geostrophic wind, the gradient wind, and the cyclostrophic wind.

As a result of the Coriolis force, winds in the northern hemisphere always flow clockwise around a high pressure area and counterclockwise around a low pressure area (the reverse occurs in the southern hemisphere). At the same time, winds always flow from areas of high pressure to areas of low pressure. These two forces are opposite but not equal, and the path that results when the two forces cancel each other runs parallel to the isobars. Wind following this path is known as geostrophic wind. Winds are said to be truly geostrophic only when other forces (e.g. Friction) acting on the air are negligible, a situation which is often a good approximation to the large-scale flow away from the tropics.

In certain circumstances, the Coriolis force acting on moving air may be almost or entirely overwhelmed by the centripetal force. Such a wind is said to be cyclostrophic, and is characterized by rapid rotation over a relatively small area. Hurricanes, tornadoes, and typhoons are examples of this type of wind.

Mesoscale winds
Synoptic winds occupy the lower boundary of what is considered to be “forecastable” wind. Winds at the next lowest level of magnitude typically arise and fade over time periods too short and over geographic regions too narrow to predict with any long-range accuracy. These mesoscale winds include such phenomena as the cold outflow from thunderstorms. This wind frequently advances ahead of more intense thunderstorms and may be sufficiently energetic to generate local weather of its own. Many of the “special” winds, addressed in the last section of this article, are mesoscale winds.

Microscale winds
Microscale winds take place over very short durations of time – seconds to minutes – and spatially over only tens to hundreds of metres. The turbulence following the passage of an active front is composed of microscale winds, and it is microscale wind which produces convective events such as dust devils. Though small in scope, microscale winds can play a major role in human affairs. It was the crash of a fully loaded Lockheed L-1011 at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in the summer of 1985, and the subsequent loss of 133 lives, that introduced the term “microburst” to many people, and that was a factor in the installation of doppler radar in airports and weather installations worldwide.

Winds by effect
In classical terminology, Aeolian winds, or winds producing Aeolian action, are winds which produce geologic changes. Modern tornadoes and hurricanes might at times be considered to produce such changes.

Largescale erosion, dune formation, and other geologic and topographic effects influenced by wind are still referred to as aeolian activity.

Local winds that are tied to specific temperature distributions
Some local winds blow only under certain circumstances, i.e. They require a certain temperature distribution.

Differential heating is the motive force behind land breezes and sea breezes (or, in the case of larger lakes, lake breezes), also known as on- or off-shore winds. Land is a rapid absorber/radiator of heat, whereas water absorbs heat more slowly but also releases it over a greater period of time. The result is that, in locations where sea and land meet, heat absorbed over the day will be radiated more quickly by the land at night, cooling the air. Over the sea, heat is still being released into the air at night, which rises. This convective motion draws the cool land air in to replace the rising air, resulting in a land breeze in the late night and early morning. During the day, the roles are reversed. Warm air over the land rises, pulling cool air in from the sea to replace it, giving a sea breeze during the afternoon and evening.

Mountain breezes and valley breezes are due to a combination of differential heating and geometry. When the sun rises, it is the tops of the mountain peaks which receive first light, and as the day progresses, the mountain slopes take on a greater heat load than the valleys. This results in a temperature inequity between the two, and as warm air rises off the slopes, cool air moves up out of the valleys to replace it. This upslope wind is called a valley breeze. The opposite effect takes place in the afternoon, as the valley radiates heat. The peaks, long since cooled, transport air into the valley in a process that is partly gravitational and partly convective and is called a mountain breeze.

Mountain breezes are one example of what is known more generally as a katabatic wind. These are winds driven by cold air flowing down a slope, and occur on the largest scale in Greenland and Antarctica. Most often, this term refers to winds which form when air which has cooled over a high, cold plateau is set in motion and descends under the influence of gravity. Winds of this type are common in regions of Mongolia and in glaciated locations.

Because katabatic refers specifically to the vertical motion of the wind, this group also includes winds which form on the lee side of mountains, and heat as a consequence of compression. Such winds may undergo a temperature increase of 20 °C (36 °F) or more, and many of the world’s “named” winds (see list below) belong to this group. Among the most well-known of these winds are the chinook of Western Canada and the American Northwest, the Swiss föhn, California’s infamous Santa Ana wind, and the French Mistral.

The opposite of a katabatic wind is an anabatic wind, or an upward-moving wind. The above-described valley breeze is an anabatic wind.

A widely-used term, though one not formally recognised by meteorologists, is orographic wind. This refers to air which undergoes orographic lifting. Most often, this is in the context of winds such as the chinook or the föhn, which undergo lifting by mountain ranges before descending and warming on the lee side.

Winds that are defined by an equilibrium of physical forces
These winds are used in the decomposition and analysis of wind profiles. They are useful for simplifying the atmospheric equations of motion and for making qualitative arguments about the horizontal and vertical distribution of winds. Examples are:

Geostrophic wind (wind that is a result of the balance between Coriolis force and pressure gradient force; flows parallel to isobars and approximates the flow above the atmospheric boundary layer in the midlatitudes if frictional effects are low)
Thermal wind (not actually a wind but a wind difference between two levels; only exists in an atmosphere with horizontal temperature gradients, i.e. Baroclinicity)
Ageostropic wind (difference between actual and geostrophic wind; the wind component which is responsible for air “filling up” cyclones over time)
Gradient wind (like geostrophic wind but also including centrifugal force)
Considerations for power generation
Main article: Wind power
Due to elevation, surface roughness, topography, and location, some areas experience more wind than others. The faster the wind, the more energy can be produced. For this reason, it is important to place wind turbines at sites with high wind speeds.

There are two kinds of wind energy applications in Canada: large scale and small scale.

Large-scale wind generation provides power to your local utility grid. Just as large-scale coal, hydro or natural gas electrical generation facilities send power to the grid, so can wind energy facilities. A single large-scale wind turbine produces enough energy to power hundreds of homes. Clustered together in a wind farm, turbines can produce enough energy for thousands of distant homes and businesses.

Small-scale wind generation provides local, on-site power to a home or business. Turbines are placed at the same site where the electricity will be used. Any additional energy that is generated, exceeding the needs of the user, can be sent to the local electrical grid. For more information on small-scale wind generation visit our section on Small-scale Wind Energy.

Names for specific winds in certain regions
In ancient Greek mythology, the four winds were personified as gods, called the Anemoi. These included Boreas, Notos, Euros, and Zephyros. The Ancient Greeks also observed the seasonal change of the winds, as evidenced by the Tower of the Winds in Athens.

In modern usage, many local wind systems have their own names. For example:

Alizé (northeasterly across central Africa and the Caribbean)
Alizé Maritime (a wet, fresh northerly wind across west central Africa)
Amihan (northeasterly wind across the Philippines)
Bayamo (a violent wind on Cuba’s southern coast)
Bora (northeasterly from eastern Europe to Italy)
Chinook (warm dry westerly off the Rocky Mountains)
Etesian (Greek name) or Meltemi (Turkish name) (northerly across Greece and Turkey)
Föhn (warm dry southerly off the northern side of the Alps)
Fremantle Doctor (afternoon sea breeze from the Indian Ocean which cools Perth, Western Australia during summer)
Gilavar (south wind in the Absheron Peninsula)
Gregale (northeasterly from Greece)
Habagat (southwesterly wind across the Philippines)
Harmattan (dry northerly wind across central Africa)
Halny (in northern Carpathians)
Khamsin (southeasterly from north Africa to the eastern Mediterranean)
Khazri (cold north wind in the Absheron Peninsula)
Kosava (strong and cold southeasterly season wind in Serbia)
Levanter (easterly through Strait of Gibraltar)
Libeccio (southwesterly towards Italy)
Marin (south-easterly from Mediterranean to France)
Mistral (cold northerly from central France and the Alps to Mediterranean)
Nor’easter (eastern United States)
Santa Ana winds (southern California)
Simoon (strong, dry, desert wind that blows in the Sahara, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, and the desert of Arabia)
Sirocco (southerly from north Africa to southern Europe)
Southerly Buster (rapidly arriving low pressure cell that dramatically cools Sydney, Australia during summer)
Tramontane (cold northwesterly from the Pyrenees or northeasterly from the Alps to the Mediterranean, similar to Mistral)
Vendavel (westerly through Strait of Gibraltar)
Zonda wind (on the eastern slope of the Andes in Argentina)
Meteorological instruments to measure wind speed and/or direction
Anemometer (measures wind speed, either directly, e.g. With rotating cups, or indirectly, e.g. Via pressure differences or the propagation speed of ultrasound signals)
Rawinsonde (GPS-based wind measurement is performed by the probe)
Weather balloon (passive measurement, balloon position is tracked from the ground visually or via radar; wind profile is computed from drift rate and the theoretical speed of ascent)
Weather vane (used to indicate wind direction)
Windsock (primarily used to indicate wind direction, may also be used to estimate wind speed by its angle)

Steven asks…

is there a solar power car?

what is the cost of solar powered reva car.with the availability of direct sunlight for four hours can it get charged fully.

Windmill Farms answers:

A solar vehicle is an electric vehicle powered by a type of renewable energy, by solar energy obtained from solar panels on the surface (generally, the roof) of the vehicle. Photovoltaic (PV) cells convert the Sun’s energy directly into electrical energy. Solar vehicles are not practical day-to-day transportation devices at present, but are primarily demonstration vehicles and engineering exercises, often sponsored by government agencies.

Solar cars combine technology typically used in the aerospace, bicycle, alternative energy and automotive industries. The design of a solar vehicle is severely limited by the energy input into the car (batteries and power from the sun). Virtually all solar cars ever built have been for the purpose of solar car races (with notable exceptions).

Like many race cars, the driver’s cockpit usually only contains room for one person, although a few cars do contain room for a second passenger. They contain some of the features available to drivers of traditional vehicles such as brakes, accelerator, turn signals, rear view mirrors (or camera), ventilation, and sometimes cruise control. A radio for communication with their support crews is almost always included.

Solar cars are often fitted with gauges as seen in conventional cars. Aside from keeping the car on the road, the driver’s main priority is to keep an eye on these gauges to spot possible problems. Cars without gauges almost always feature wireless telemetry, which allows the driver’s team to monitor the car’s energy consumption, solar energy capture and other parameters and free the driver to concentrate on driving.

Electrical and mechanical systems

The electrical system is the most important part of the car’s systems as it controls all of the power that comes into and leaves the system. The battery pack plays the same role in a solar car that a petrol tank plays in a normal car in storing power. Solar cars use a range of batteries including lead-acid batteries, nickel-metal hydride batteries (NiMH), Nickel-Cadmium batteries (NiCd), Lithium ion batteries and Lithium polymer batteries.

Many solar race cars have complex data acquisition systems that monitor the whole electrical system while even the most basic cars have systems that provide information on battery voltage and current to the driver.

The mechanical systems of a solar car are designed to keep weight and space a minimum while maintaining strength. Designers normally use titanium and composites to ensure a good strength-to-weight ratio.

Solar cars usually have three wheels, but some have four. Three wheelers usually have two front wheels and one rear wheel: the front wheels steer and the rear wheel follows. Four wheel vehicles are set up like normal cars or similarly to three wheeled vehicles with the two rear

Solar array

The solar array consists of hundreds of photovoltaic solar cells converting sunlight into electricity. The larger arrays in use can produce over 2 kilowatts (2.6 hp).

The solar array can be mounted in several ways:

* horizontal. This most common arrangement gives most overall power during most of the day in low latitudes or higher latitude summers and offers little interaction with the wind. Horizontal arrays can be integrated or be in the form of a free canopy.
* vertical. This arrangement is sometimes found in free standing or integrated sails to harness wind energy.[1] Useful solar power is limited to mornings, evenings, or winters and when the vehicle is pointing in the right direction.
* adjustable. Free solar arrays can often be tilted around the axis of travel in order to increase power when the sun is low and well to the side. An alternative is to tilt the whole vehicle when parked. Two-axis adjustment is only found on marine vehicles, where the aerodynamic resistance is of less importance than with road vehicles.
* integrated. Some vehicles cover every available surface with solar cells. Some of the cells will be at an optimal angle whereas others will be shaded.
* trailer. Solar trailers are especially useful for retrofitting existing vehicles with little stability, e.g. Bicycles. Some trailers also include the batteries and others also the drive motor.
* remote. By mounting the solar array at a stationary location instead of the vehicle, power can be maximised and resistance minimized. The virtual grid-connection however involves more electrical losses than with true solar vehicles and the battery must be larger.

The choice of solar array geometry involves an optimization between power output, aerodynamic resistance and vehicle mass, as well as practical considerations. For example, a free horizontal canopy gives 2-3 times the surface area of a vehicle with integrated cells but offers better cooling of the cells and shading of the riders. There are also thin flexible solar arrays in development.

Mary asks…

What is the highest known vertical drop on Mount Everest?

Windmill Farms answers:

Mount Everest, mountain peak in the Himalayas of southern Asia, considered the highest mountain in the world. Mount Everest is situated at the edge of the Tibetan Plateau (Qing Zang Gaoyuan), on the border of Nepal and the Tibet Autonomous Region of China.

Mount Everest was known as Peak XV until 1856, when it was named for Sir George Everest, the surveyor general of India from 1830 to 1843. The naming coincided with an official announcement of the mountain’s height, taken as the average of six separate measurements made by the Great Trigonometrical Survey in 1850. Most Nepali people refer to the mountain as Sagarmatha, meaning “Forehead in the Sky.” Speakers of Tibetan languages, including the Sherpa people of northern Nepal, refer to the mountain as Chomolungma, Tibetan for “Goddess Mother of the World.”

The height of Mount Everest has been determined to be 8,850 m (29,035 ft). The mountain’s actual height, and the claim that Everest is the highest mountain in the world, have long been disputed. But scientific surveys completed in the early 1990s continued to support evidence that Everest is the highest mountain in the world. In fact, the mountain is rising a few millimeters each year due to geological forces. Global Positioning System (GPS) has been installed on Mount Everest for the purpose of detecting slight rates of geological uplift.
Mount Everest, like the rest of the Himalayas, rose from the floor of the ancient Tethys Sea. The range was created when the Eurasian continental plate collided with the Indian subcontinental plate about 30 to 50 million years ago. Eventually the marine limestone was forced upward to become the characteristic yellow band on the top of Mount Everest. Beneath the shallow marine rock lies the highly metamorphosed black gneiss (foliated, or layered, rock) of Precambrian time, a remnant of the original continental plates that collided and forced up the Himalayas.
Mount Everest is covered with huge glaciers that descend from the main peak and its nearby satellite peaks. The mountain itself is a pyramid-shaped horn, sculpted by the erosive power of the glacial ice into three massive faces and three major ridges, which soar to the summit from the north, south, and west and separate the glaciers. From the south side of the mountain, in a clockwise direction, the main glaciers are the Khumbu glacier, which flows northeast before turning southwest; the West Rongbuk glacier in the northwest; the Rongbuk glacier in the north; the East Rongbuk glacier in the northeast; and the Kangshung glacier in the east.

The climate of Mount Everest is naturally extreme. In January, the coldest month, the summit temperature averages -36° C (-33° F) and can drop as low as -60° C (-76° F). In July, the warmest month, the average summit temperature is -19° C (-2° F). At no time of the year does the temperature on the summit rise above freezing. In winter and spring the prevailing westerly wind blows against the peak and around the summit. Moisture-laden air rises from the south slopes of the Himalayas and condenses into a white, pennant-shaped cloud pointing east; this “flag cloud” sometimes enables climbers to predict storms. When the wind reaches 80 km/h (50 mph), the flag cloud is at a right angle to the peak. When the wind is weaker, the cloud tilts up; when it is stronger, the flag tilts down.

From June through September the mountain is in the grip of the Indian monsoon, during which wind and precipitation blow in from the Indian Ocean. Masses of clouds and violent snowstorms are common during this time. From November to February, in the dead of winter, the global southwest-flowing jet stream moves in from the north, beating the summit with winds of hurricane force that may reach more than 285 km/h (177 mph). Even during the pre- and post-monsoon climbing seasons, strong winds may arise suddenly. When such storms develop, sand and small stones carried aloft, as well as beating snow and ice, pose problems for climbers.

Precipitation falls mostly during the monsoon season, while winter storms between December and March account for the rest. Unexpected storms, however, can drop up to 3 m (10 ft) of snow on unsuspecting climbers and mountain hikers.

Base Camp, which serves as a resting area and base of operations for climbers organizing their attempts for the summit, is located on the Khumbu glacier at an elevation of 5,400 m (17,600 ft); it receives an average of 450 mm (18 in) of precipitation a year.
Traditionally, the people who live near Mount Everest have revered the mountains of the Himalayas and imagined them as the homes of the gods. Because the peaks were considered sacred, no local people scaled them before the early 1900s. However, when foreign expeditions brought tourist dollars and Western ideas to the area, people of the Sherpa ethnic group began to serve as high-altitude porters for them. Because Nepal had been closed to foreigners since the early 1800s, all pre-World War II (1939-1945) Everest expeditions were forced to recruit Sherpa porters from D?rjiling (Darjeeling), India, then circle through Tibet and approach Everest from the north.

In 1913 British explorer John Noel sneaked into Tibet, which was also closed at the time, and made a preliminary survey of the mountain’s northern approaches, where the topography is less varied than on the southern side. In 1921 the British began a major exploration of the north side of the mountain, led by George Leigh Mallory. Mallory’s expedition, and another that took place soon afterward, were unable to overcome strong winds, avalanches, and other hazards to reach the summit. In 1924 a third British expedition resulted in the disappearance of Mallory and a climbing companion only 240 m (800 ft) from the summit. More attempts were made throughout the 1930s and into the 1940s. Then, with the conquest of Tibet by China in the early 1950s, the region was closed to foreigners again and the northern approaches to the mountain were sealed off.

In 1950, the year after Nepal opened to foreigners, W. H. Tilman and C. Houston made the first ascent from the south and became the first people to see into the Khumbu cirque (a steep basin at the head of a mountain valley). A number of attempts to reach the mountain’s summit followed in the early 1950s. In 1952 the Swiss almost succeeded in climbing the mountain from the South Col, which is a major pass between the Everest and Lhotse peaks and is now the most popular climbing route to the summit. On May 29, 1953, under the tenth British expedition flag and the leadership of John Hunt, Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay of Nepal successfully completed the first ascent of Mount Everest via the South Col. Several expeditions have since followed. In 1975 Junko Tabei of Japan became the first woman to summit Mount Everest. Later, in 1978, Austrians Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler established a new and rigorous standard by climbing to the summit without the use of supplemental oxygen, which, because of the thin air at Everest’s high altitude, is important for the energy, health, and thinking skills of the climbers. In 1991 Sherpas, who had carried the supplies for so many foreigners up Mount Everest, completed their own successful expedition to the summit. By the mid-1990s, 4,000 people had attempted to climb Everest—660 of them successfully reached the summit and more than 140 of them died trying.

The difficulties of climbing Mount Everest are legendary. Massive snow and ice avalanches are a constant threat to all expeditions. The avalanches thunder off the peaks repeatedly, sometimes burying valleys, glaciers, and climbing routes. Camps are chosen to avoid known avalanche paths, and climbers who make ascents through avalanche terrain try to cross at times when the weather is most appropriate. Hurricane-force winds are a well-known hazard on Everest, and many people have been endangered or killed when their tents collapsed or were ripped to shreds by the gales. Hypothermia, the dramatic loss of body heat, is also a major and debilitating problem in this region of high winds and low temperatures.

Another hazard facing Everest climbers is the famous Khumbu icefall, which is located not far above Base Camp and is caused by the rapid movement of the Khumbu glacier over the steep rock underneath. The movement breaks the ice into sérac (large, pointed masses of ice) cliffs and columns separated by huge crevasses, and causes repeated icefalls across the route between Base Camp and Camp I. Many people have died in this area. Exposed crevasses may be easy to avoid, but those buried under snow can form treacherous snow bridges through which unwary climbers can fall.

The standard climb of Mount Everest from the south side ascends the Khumbu glacier to Base Camp at 5,400 m (17,600 ft). Typical expeditions use four camps above Base Camp; these camps give the climbers an opportunity to rest and acclimate (adapt) to the high altitude. The route from Base Camp through the great Khumbu icefall up to Camp I at 5,900 m (19,500 ft) is difficult and dangerous; it usually takes one to three weeks to establish because supplies must be carried up the mountain in several separate trips. Once Camp II, at 6,500 m (21,300 ft), has been supplied in the same manner using both Base Camp and Camp I as bases, climbers typically break down Base Camp and make the trek from there to Camp II in one continuous effort. Once acclimatized, the climbers can make the move to Camp II in five to six hours. Camp III is then established near the cirque of the Khumbu glacier at 7,300 m (24,000 ft). The route up the cirque headwall from Camp III to the South Col and Camp IV at 7,900 m (26,000 ft) is highly strenuous and takes about four to eight hours. The South Col is a cold, windy, and desolate place of rocks, snow slabs, littered empty oxygen bottles, and other trash.

From the South Col to the summit is a climb of only 900 vertical m (3,000 vertical ft), although its fierce exposure to adverse weather and steep drop-offs poses many challenges. The section between 8,530 m (28,000 ft) and the South Summit at 8,750 m (28,700 ft) is particularly treacherous because of the steepness and unstable snow. From the South Summit there remains another 90 vertical m (300 vertical ft) along a terrifying knife-edged ridge. The exposure is extreme, with the possibility of huge vertical drops into Tibet on the right and down the southwest face on the left. A little more than 30 vertical m (100 vertical ft) from the summit is a 12-m (40-ft) chimney across a rock cliff known as the Hillary Step; this is one of the greatest technical challenges of the climb.

As the popularity of climbing Everest has increased in recent years, so have safety problems. To pay the high climbing permit fee charged by the Nepalese government, many experienced climbers have recruited wealthy, amateur climbers as teammates. The combination of inexperience, crowded summit conditions (more than 30 have been known to summit the peak on the same day), and extreme weather conditions has led to a number of tragedies in which clients and competent guides alike have died attempting the climb.
The large number of trekkers and climbers who visit Nepal and the Everest region contribute to the local economy but also cause serious environmental impact. Such impact includes the burning of wood for fuel, pollution in the form of human waste and trash, and abandoned climbing gear. Although some climbing gear is recycled by local residents either for their own use or for resale, it is estimated that more than 50 tons of plastic, glass, and metal were dumped between 1953 and the mid-1990s in what has been called “the world’s highest junkyard.” Up on the ice, where few local people go, the norm is to throw trash into the many crevasses, where it is ground up and consumed by the action of the ice. A few bits and pieces show up on the lower part of the glacier many years later as they are churned back to the surface, although organic matter is generally consumed or scavenged by local wildlife. At the high-elevation camps, used oxygen bottles are strewn everywhere.

Efforts have been made to reduce the negative environmental impact on Mount Everest. The Nepalese government has been using a portion of climbing fees to clean up the area. In 1976, with aid from Sir Edmund Hillary’s Himalayan Trust and the Nepalese government, the Sagarmatha National Park was established to preserve the remaining soil and forest around Mount Everest. By the mid-1990s the park comprised 1,240 sq km (480 sq mi). Trekking and climbing groups must bring their own fuel to the park (usually butane and kerosene), and the cutting of wood is now prohibited. Because the freedoms of Sherpas have been restricted by the park rules, they have not been sympathetic to the existence of the park. Additionally, the Sagarmatha Pollution Control, funded by the World Wildlife Fund and the Himalayan Trust, was established in 1991 to help preserve Everest’s environment. Climbing activity continues to increase, however, and the environmental future of the Mount Everest area remains uncertain.

David asks…

Hi Guys, wind turbine and solar panel specifications for lighting and heating (only) 20 small houses ?

Hi Everyone, I am working on a business plan which I need to submit to an investment board in Pakistan and a some other countries by December 2011. After speaking to numerous people and reading many journals I would like to know what would be the equipment specification and cost for:
1) Wind turbine for 20 small houses (only lighting, perhaps 2 bulbs and heating the gas stove) would be required.
2) Solar panels for the same need.

I understand batteries and additional equipment will be required if someone can answer these question for me I would be greatly appreciative. The first market I would like to target is rural Pakistan and the resources for both the solar and wind initiatives are as follows:

The average daily insolation amounts to approximately 5–7 kWh/m2/day. Especially
the southwestern province of Balochistan and Northeastern part of Sindh . There the sun shines between 6 to 8 h daily or approximately more than 2300–2700 h per annum. The average daily insolation of 5–7 kWh/ m2/day means daily sun energy of 18–25 MJ/m2/day is available as
input natural resource of energy to be exploited for photovoltaic power generation or solar thermal applications.

Wind speed from 5 m/s to 7 m/s persists in coastal regions of Sind and Balochistan provinces
and in a number of North-West Frontier valleys

Given this data could someone be kind enough to tell me the kind of equipment required to power a small village on 20 or so households for just lighting and heating the stove. My business plan intends to alleviate the poverty of these villagers who have been living in Darkness for centuries and to improve their environment.
Any information will be greatly appreciated.

Windmill Farms answers:

Wind and solar ouputs/costs can vary greatly depending on the designs. First of all solar…newer thin-cell designs offer much greater outputs compared to silicon based systems as measured per K/Hr. Other designs that use multi spectrum or solar heat-harvesting can also increase yields/lower costs although construction costs are higher and require large solar farms….thin-cells can be roof mounted or in small arrays. I’ll add some links below with more info.

Wind turbines can also vary depending on large fixed blade or egg-beater/vertical axis designs… VAWT’s..which are smaller/easier to mount on roofs or small areas and require less wind speeds than larger units.

If your plan is to create a large solar array/wind farm and transmit power to villages, then infrastructure costs go up versus small, local turbines or solar arrays which can be roof or pole mounted. LED lighting would lower energy requirements.

Some related links with more info…
See related articles under solar and wind…


Thin cell solar and other methods…


Vertical Axis Wind Turbines…VAWT…can generate power at low wind speeds down to 2 mph.


Hydrogen can also be produced by electrolysis of urine which uses less energy and has two extra molecules of H compared to water. Wind turbines or solar cells could be used to split water or even eaiser…urine… Into hydrogen which can be stored and used for cooking/heating.


Hydrogen from sea water using radio waves…


Sodium silicides and water create hydrogen gas…used to power bicycles or other uses…


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Micro Wind Power

Thomas asks…

Paranoid a micro-burst is going to come out of nowhere and hit me?

Ever since I found out about microbursts I’ve been paranoid. What are the chances of this and are there any warning signs? Would it kill me if I was walking outside and it came down on me?

Windmill Farms answers:

It is normal to be afraid of the power of nature. I teach meteorology to aviators at my local club and roughly 60 percent of light aviation accidents can be related to the weather conditions.

A micro-bust is what can happen on the side of a very strong convection as those found in a thunderstorm. The air simply sinks, nearly like an inverted tornado. But because sinking air warms up by the adiabatic effect of a higher pressure, moisture evaporates and the micro-bust is invisible from a distance. This is perhaps what makes it very dangerous.

But it is only dangerous to aviation, especially in the final approach near an airport as the aircraft flies low over the ground.

If you are yourself on the ground, nothing can happen to you: the air cannot go through the earth and is therefore diverted on the side. However it can create a strong gust of wind that is lasting very shortly. I have experienced such in my sailboat at sea. It is then best to lower the sails before the gust hits you. A prudent sailor will do that long before the thunderstorm is any close. The prudent aviator will simply fly far away from any thunderstorm or any dark cumulonimbus cloud.

Commercial aviation tries to avoid as much as possible up and down drafts found in thunderstorms. But it is not always easy. There is no way to predict micro-burst. It is usually the pilot of one aircraft that reports it to the air traffic controller, who, in turn, warns the other pilots on the same course.

Turbulence are defined as light, moderate, severe and extreme. If extreme, the tower may decide to close the airport entirely for a while. This is never very popular and there is a tendency among pilots to down play the strenght of the turbulence because no one wish to be the one that “closes the airport.” Hence, a tendency to report lesser turbulence than actually encountered. This is a serious problem that the aviation authorities try to address. But I digress; in your case, on the ground, you have nothing to fear from a micro-burst.

EDITED: As an answer to Atmospheric Scientist, of course, a micro-burst is not a tornado; I was only trying to make a metaphor! :-)

Steven asks…

Why are we obsessed by nuclear power?

In the name of climate change, the British government has become obsessed by nuclear power as the solution to future electricity generation. And yet, not long ago, nuclear power was unfashionable due to its downsides and, on the news this morning, it was said we are running out of sites to dump the waste and the sources of fuel are limited.

There are more exciting options available, such as micro generation and Combined Heat and Power, which are cheaper and can come on stream faster (I have not included wind power as it is too inefficient).

Why will the politicians not consider further alternatives?
Okay, a secondary thought: are their other considerations than climate change to bear in mind?
We always have passing ‘fads’ in environmental policies. We could satisfy the global warming debate and then screw up another area for later. Should we not have a wider view of any damage we might cause when choosing an energy policy?

Windmill Farms answers:

At current demand and current costs, we have enough fuel for a century:

If the price of uranium went up, people would look for more and the supply would probably go up. Or we might use thorium or breeder reactors.

Getting rid of the fuel is a money issue, not a ‘space’ one. 40-odd years of nuclear power have given us enough waste to fill the Royal Albert Hall 5 times over. That’s very little space!

We can provide a lot more electricity with renewables & if we push really hard, we might hit the government’s target of 32% renewable electricity by 2020.

Where does the rest come from? Carbon capture coal is being mooted; governments are pouring money into it.

Combined Heat & Power is being pushed in some areas (eg Woking & Devon). But it doesn’t make a huge difference to CO2 emissions like nuclear does, and it tends to use gas which has supply problems.

If we go all out for CHP, the CO2 savings would be about 33%. If we go for nuclear electricity + gas heating, you save over 60%. Nuclear electricity with electric heating it’s over 90% savings.

@lothringur – how do you suggest we provide all of our energy renewably? If we can’t provide all of it, then the choice for the rest is fossil fuel or nuclear. Nuclear is probably more expensive, but its life cycle kills fewer people, it’s more secure than gas, and its much lower CO2. Since I’m convinced we won’t provide all our energy renewably for decades, then anti-nuclear is currently pro-fossil fuel.


@original question – all environmental and economic impacts should be considered. Nuclear has many advantages other than CO2, but its most obvious advantage is CO2. Since global warming is a huge problem, it justifies a huge response, which is why I concentrated my answer on it.

William asks…

How can I measure the total energy gained when using a small wind turbine?

I’m working on a science research project that involves replacing the grill of an automobile with micro wind turbines of equal surface area and im not sure how to measure the energy gained from the turbines. I simply planning on, in the future, connecting the turbines to an external battery, not rerouting it back into the car.
Also could anyone could help tell me how i could related the decrease change in MPG, as a result of the new drag from the new grill, to the gain in energy from the turbines to see if i get a net gain?
I understand that the law of conservation of energy clearly comes into play but that is why I am not putting the turbines on the top of the vehicle. I will be replacing the grill, an object whose function is to allow air to pass through to the engine to cool it off and protect the engine from foreign objects. I am taking the wasted energy (the drag on the grill) and turning it into something more efficient while maintaining the primary function of the original grill.

Windmill Farms answers:

You’d be using the turbines to generate electric power? It’s easy to measure electric power. Current x Voltage = Power. That is to say, if you multiply the instantaneous voltage between the two terminals of the generator by the current flowing through the generator in that same instant, then the result is the power in that instant. Current is measured in Amps, voltage in Volts, and power in Watts.

One thing to be careful of, if there is a battery or other potential power source in the circuit, then you’ll have to pay attention to whether the generator is GENERATING power, or USING power. Most “generators” can function as motors and vice versa. If you hook up a simple DC motor to a battery, the motor will try to spin in a certain direction. If you force it to spin in the opposite direction, then it will generate power and charge the battery. If you let it spin in the direction that it wants to turn, then it will USE power and deplete the battery.

The formula, current x voltage = power, is the same in either case, but current, voltage, and power are all signed quantities. Hooked up to a battery, the voltage will be pretty close to constant (that’s what batteries do), but the current will flow one direction if the device is acting as a motor, and it will flow the other direction if the device is acting as a generator. That is to say, the sign of the current changes, and consequently, so does the sign of the power.

Oh, one other thing. Don’t spend any more money on your project than you can afford to throw away. I’m not sure exactly what you are hoping to accomplish, but I have a strong feeling that you will be disappointed by the result. An electrical generator does not generate energy: All it does is to CONVERT mechanical energy into electrical energy. Where does the mechanical energy come from? Well, in your case, there’s a long answer and there’s a short answer. The short answer is that your turbines will be robbing it from the kinetic energy of the forward motion of the car.

You can’t get more out than what you put in.

Paul asks…

batteryless windmill that tie into the grid info.?

i am looking into windmill generated electric that ties directly into the grid instead of using batteries. does anyone know of any websites that explain how to do this?

Windmill Farms answers:

Pop micro wind power generation into your favourite search engine. There are companies that will assist you in going ahead with a project and contract with you to buy power from you. I operate in the UK so only know of companies in this country. Here’s a link:

Laura asks…

How do micro grid power systems work?

Windmill Farms answers:

It is a self-managed group of small generators (diesel, wind, hydro) and local load/users, who do their own load dispatch and eventual exchange with a larger power grid.

It works same as large power pools, i.e., they control voltage, frequency and power flow.

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Advantages Of Wind Power

Laura asks…

What are advantages of solar power harvesting over wind?

What are the advantages of solar power harvesting over wind?

Im putting together a project, mostly on a future perspective from an investment point of view, but I would welcome any information or ideas you have about solar technologies benefits vs Wind harvesting technologies

Windmill Farms answers:

Both solar and wind store the electricity in batteries, or send it straight into the power grid, and wind works up to 24hrs

Today, these two technologies are not in competition with each other, it’s all in where you place them.

At the moment, solar energy is very poor, between 4 and 22% of actual sunlight hitting the solar panel is converted to electricity. Investing in solar research, converting actual sunlight into a higher percentage, will eventually make wind only productive in very high wind areas and low sunlight hours (NS poles).
Also, space. The further one goes out, the less sunlight, but there are certain types of winds. Perhaps not those that turn blades, but it’s a wind that solar can not capture, only development in wind technologies.
Jupiter. If you could lower a wind turbine down to windy planets, well again I say there is a place for both technologies. If this is a project on future investments, how far into the future, is it only on earth?
Here on earth solar may end up the dominant, but in space?
So if you invest NOW, invest in solar, wind – you probably wont see a return on your money, your grandkids might!!

Thomas asks…

what are the advantages of using solar or wind power in new home construction?

Windmill Farms answers:

_integration_ of the system into home design is a huge factor. For example,our AC infrastructure for electricity delivery is heinously wasteful. If you were to integrate your solar electric system into the design of your house you could save the transmission line energy losses from transmission over many miles from the source to the consumer. You can change the power system in your house to DC instead of AC and deliver higher power for the same gauge wire.

Not all locations have abundant solar or wind energy sources, and this is a consideration. Additionally, these can be absent or throttled for long periods, which poses a hygiene, safety, and security concern, so you probably need a minimum infratructure conncetion to assure that these concerns are addressed

Charles asks…

Advantages of solar power during industrial revolution?

I don’t think there were any so if u guys could just come up with logical advantages during that time period that would be fine but if there are some just say so

Windmill Farms answers:

The advantages of solar power during the industrial revolution were pretty much the same as they are today – it’s a clean, carbon-neutral source of power, and it comes for free. But the value placed on those advantages would have been less – environmentalism wasn’t a big deal, we didn’t have any idea about global warming, and other power sources like coal were also inexpensive.

There were also a number of disadvantages, some of which we still have, and some of which we’ve addressed. For one, we didn’t have the technology to produce photovoltaic cells (i.e. Solar panels) on anything like the scale required. That didn’t happen until the mid 1950s. (Of course there are other things you can do, like use solar power to heat water to drive a steam turbine, which would have been possible). For another, solar power doesn’t work at night, or when it’s cloudy, and the amount of power is reduced at higher latitudes (such as in England and the northeastern US, which were at the heart of the industrial revolution). So you need storage capabilities and transmission capabilities, which again didn’t exist at the scale required. A third problem is that the industrial revolution (well, the 1st industrial revolution, anyway) was very much a mechanical (as opposed to electrical) revolution. Electric motors weren’t developed until the 1830s (at the end of the period identified as the industrial revolution), and weren’t really practical until the 1880s (ushering in the 2nd industrial revolution). So, again, we’re looking at a solar powered steam engine rather than a solar cell like we usually think of today.

Finally, there’s the issue of energy density. Let’s say you wanted to use solar power to boil water to drive a steam engine locomotive. A typical steam locomotive will use a firebox with a cross-sectional area of about 4 square meters, which would generate 7000 horsepower, or about 5 megawatts. How much area do you need to collect sunlight to get that same level of power?

Well, the maximum amount of solar energy we can get, with a collector exactly perpendicular to the rays of the sun, is about 1.35 kilowatts per square meter. So, you’d need 5 million / 1350 = 3700 square meters of solar collecting area to power a steam locomotive with solar energy, in the best case scenario! That’s just not practical for a train which is generating power on the go.

But note that pretty much all the power used during the industrial revolution, whether it was fossil fuels like coal, gas, and oil, living matter like wood, hydroelectric power (like a dam or water wheel), or wind power, is ALL solar power anyway! The sun provided the energy for the ancient plants which fed the ancient animals, which became fossil fuels; the sun provided the energy for the trees that were cut down for wood; the sun provided the energy to the atmosphere that evaporated water and carried to the top of a mountain to run down and power a water wheel; the sun provided the energy that heated the atmosphere and created wind!

I hope that helps!

Steven asks…

geothermal vs. wind power?

i’m doing a debate on geothermal vs. wind power, and i’m on the geothermal side. i need disadvantages of wind power and defense comebacks for geothermal when they attack it. or… i guess advantages. please help?

Windmill Farms answers:

I think both are useful in different situations.

Wind power is very erratic, only when the wind blows, can kill birds or bats in large numbers, makes noise, is considered ugly by many.
But it is free, except for maintenance costs and is already in wide use and projected to supply an increasing percentage of global power. However, it will probably never get above 20%

Geothermal has a very small installation base at present.

Geothermal power is cost effective, reliable, and environmentally friendly, but has previously been geographically limited to areas near tectonic plate boundaries. Recent technological advances have dramatically expanded the range and size of viable resources, especially for direct applications such as home heating. Geothermal wells tend to release greenhouse gases trapped deep within the earth, but these emissions are much lower than those of conventional fossil fuels. As a result, this technology has the potential to help mitigate global warming if widely deployed.

Geothermal power requires no fuel, and is therefore immune to fluctuations in fuel cost, but capital costs tend to be high. Drilling accounts for most of the costs of electrical plants, and exploration of deep resources entails very high financial risks. At present, the construction of a geothermal electric plant and well costs about 2-5 million € per MW of capacity, while operational costs are 0.04-0.10 € per kWh.

Geothermal power offers a degree of scalability: a large geothermal plant can power entire cities while smaller power plants can supply rural villages or heat individual homes.

Read the reference, it has lots of info.


Donna asks…

What are the advantages and disadvantages of wind power generation?

Windmill Farms answers:

An advantage could be less pollution, a disadvantage could be it’s not always windy, so it’s not always going to work.

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Uses Of Wind Energy In Everyday Life

Mary asks…

what is the most reliable energy source?

solar, wind, hydroelectric, geothermal, tidal, wave
at first i thought it was solr but the sun isnt always shining and at some point it is goning to run out but not any time soon. so what energy source from that list can we use all the time. thanks

Windmill Farms answers:

The most reliable forms of energy are geothermal and solar. People may think oil but that is not true, it will run out and that is not as distant as you think with current levels of usage. The easy to get oil is already depleted. Some will say solar is not reliable because the sun goes down at night, they obviously don’t understand the science behind it because it will be back in a few hours guaranteed, if it burns out….the last thing we have to worry about is electricity. With the generation of solar power you go into it knowing the sun is not shining 100% of the time, so if you do not plan for it and set up battery banks for night operation, it is the desiners fault not the reliablility of the solar process.

Geothermal is also extreamly reliable, the earth is not going to cool down anytime soon, sooner or later it will, but it will be a gradual process and we will know well in advance that it is happing. As it happens the geothermal plant will still be able to produce energy, just not as much as it was at peak temperature.

If an oil tanker sinks and the power plant runs out of oil (unlikely yes) then you are in trouble. You can not wake up everyday and say “I bet on my life oil will be at the plant” with solar and geothemal you know 100% the power source will be around day after day for millions of years. Anything that requires the extracting, production, or hauling of raw material in order to produce power can not be considered reliable because there are to many places where the chain can break.

Maria asks…

how to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide?

what 2 things could i do or change in everyday life that would reduce the amount of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere ?

Windmill Farms answers:

Planting more trees especially neem trees…. Since neem absorbs more CO2.. Use only renewable sources of energy. Use solar power for ur vehicles and for cooking,for power ur houses, use mass transport system like bus,train…use bicycles..!! Use renewable energy sources like wind power,nuclear power, tidel power, solar power,geothermal power….. Use hydrogen fuels..!! If everyone follow this…..our earth will become a heaven

Robert asks…

Better energy source?

I was just thinking, a lot of environmentalists and such keep on saying that we should develop other, better energy sources other than fossil fuels and the like. But don’t we already have this? What about Nuclear power? China is beginning several projects using Nuclear power, why don’t we? I would love to see both views on this subject, and any true information or resources you have I would appreciate.

Windmill Farms answers:

First off Nuclear power is not safe because of the radiation and toxic chemicals that can’t be disposed of properly with a half life of a half a million years, that’s not good for the future generations to have to deal with.

Wind and water (hydro) work well already but the wind turbines are expensive right now and haven’t been used but in a few places around the country. I also like Hydrogen from water with the by-product being water, no toxins produced and very renewable. This would be great to run our cars on as they are already doing.

Magnets are not fully understood yet but they have been able to use magnets, high frequencies and capacitors to create a hover skateboard like the one in “back to the future”. They have levitation already but how to apply it to everyday life is another thing.

Then there’s the military which have propulsion systems that can take us to the stars but oil has a hold on that too at least for now. The Military is fifty to a hundred years ahead of present technology releasing only a small portion to the public a little at a time.

My favorite however is solar because it’s totally clean and renewable and free. The problem right now with solar is it’s efficiency rate by having on it’s best day a thirty percent efficiency rate. This means that with all the sun it takes in it can only store thirty percent of that sun light.

Now I have to say I will tell you of a new way to look at solar but I must first say that all good alternative energy sources are being suppressed by big oil coming in and buying up these invention and sitting on them to kill any competition.

Now one case in point is a think tank down in the Silicon Valley where they were experimenting on transistors and the sub-straight inside when they accidentally inflated or blew up the sub-straight material also used in solar panels (that;s the black material in the center of the panel) to where it kind of looked like a sponge instead of the thickness of paper. However, something wonderful was discovered after a few tests that the efficiency went up to 80% making it a viable energy source away from oil.

The reason is that light even moving fast flows and collects like water so the deeper the bowl to collect it in the more energy was retrieved. This would enable a solar panel to be a fraction of the size of the type today and a smaller bank of batteries could be used with more efficiency as well. You could mount one on your cars roof or motorbike and never touch gas again or mount them on many electrical devices to run them as they recharge in the sun. This was quickly hushed up and forgotten by most people. I need investors!

Joseph asks…

why is energy cannot be destroyed but it can transform?

why is energy cannot be destroyed but it can transform?

Windmill Farms answers:

Maybe you’re referring to what we call useful energy. We know that energy cannot be created nor destoryed, what we do is harness it. Examples would burning of fossil fuels, moving power of wind, waterfalls and tides, sunlight, nuclear fission and fusion. The thing is we use transform these energies to put it to use like tranportation, heating, lighting, communication, and even for the purpose of living (the way we consume food). Now when we consume these energies in our everyday lives it isn’t destroyed but transformed it much lesser or not useful form at all (usually heat). Energy is constant in the universe, why do we strive for more energy resources? It is actually the useful energy we need.

Donna asks…

Can you guys post something about energy? To help in Science?

Windmill Farms answers:

There are many forms of energy.

For example
Mechanical – Potential Energy and Kinetic Energy

Many of the devices/machines we use in everyday life are designed to convert one form of energy to another.

For example
Loudspeaker (electrical to sound)
Microphone (sound to electrical)
Electric Light Bulb (Electrical to light and unwanted heat)
Electric Kettle (Electrical to heat)
Motor (electrical and magnetic to kinetic)
Petrol engine (chemical and electrical to kinetic)

The Principle of the Conservation of Energy says that energy can not be created or destroyed, merely transferred from one form to another.

Renewable energy sources are used to generate electricity.
For example wind power, tidal power, solar power.

Non-renewable energy sources are also used to generate electricity (and unwanted other forms of energy).
Examples would be burning coal or gas or oil.

How am I doing ?

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Renewable Energy Companies

Mary asks…

What if USA Defense Companies only sold Defense to USA & retooled to also make Renewable Energy?

Windmill Farms answers:

Name me one viable example of “renewable energy” that I can put in the tank of my car and bikes that does not cost as much to make, mean I have to “convert” the engine to run, produce as much waste and pollution in their manufacture, or cost as much at the pump to buy and I will use it! Until then, “renewable energy” is not only a magic buzz-word for the “I hate oil” lobbyists to rally fans of “Back to the Future” around but a way for them to make billions at our expense… If “we are brainwashed by Big Oil” so then are YOU by “Big Green”!

Jenny asks…

Renewable Energy, need help?

How could renewable energy sources be used to meet a household’s needs?

Consider the following issues:

What renewable sources of energy are available?

Which sources could be used to supply a household’s needs? How could each source be used?

Where would the home have to be located to use each source?

What equipment would be needed? Where would this equipment be located?

What backup systems should be included?

For all you smart people out there, please answer all of these questions!

Windmill Farms answers:

Renewable sources:
geothermal, while not renewable, is often classed in this area as it is inexhaustable.

Depends on the household and where it is located. Windy area, use wind power. Lots of sun, use solar power.

Solar array would be on the roof. Wind generator would be on a tower.
You will need a large array of batteries to supply power when the sun/wind is not available. Alternatively, sell power back to the electric utility company and use power from them during periods of no sun or wind.

If this is an isolated house with no access to the power grid, I’d have a diesel generator for backup.

I came across a new, proven and tested home made wind power system and solar power system which eliminates our electricity bills. It was written by a Renewable energy enthusiasts Michael Harvey the diy called Earth4energy. You can get your copy to save energy and help environment while eliminating your power bills. Get it from here:

Sandy asks…

which are the most famous companies producing renewable energy?

Windmill Farms answers:

British Petroleum (BP) have been selling solar energy for um… Last 20? Years…
To places such as Africa.

If BP used the sun from the Sahara desert, they could provide solar energy for the world.

If they sold corporation strength solar collectors, we could all install on our roofs etc.,
providing us with abundant FREE clean safe energy, and reduce carbon emissions
by a massive amount, whilst doing away with the need for a grid system.

Worth thinking about, eh?

Michael asks…

Master in Renewable Energy?

Hi everyone!

I’m an undergraduate student with a Bsc in Business Administration. I really would like to work for an renewable energy company in my future (such as Solar, wind…..).

What could be the best University path (Msc/MBA…) to obtain the necessary Skills required from this kind of companies?

-Should I just take a Msc in Business Administration/Entrepreneurship/New business Development and then just try to get in some company

-Or should I start to specialize myself already, getting a Msc in Renewable Energy or Sustainable Development?In this case could u advise my some University around Europe?

Thaks a lot!

See u everybody!
So “Thanks a lot” my friend… :)

Windmill Farms answers:

By your question I assume that you are located somewhere across the pond from the USA. I’m on the west side of the Atlantic Puddle, so I’m sending this to you long distance.

Your best bet is to talk to several human resources or personnel department heads of companies in the area (both geographically and industrially) where you’d like to work.

For example, if you’d like to work in Geothermal, I would suggest companies in Iceland. If you want to work in solar power, I suggest that you look in southern Europe or North Africa. Winter nights are too long up north.

You get the idea.

Now as to the course of study. I’d concentrate on the discipline of business. That way, if ‘green’ energy proves to be a bust in a few years you will have skills that other industries could appreciate. If you have electives, then you could add a few ‘green’ courses to your resume.

Speaking of resumes, get in the habit of writing EVERYTHING in professional language. If necessary, after you finish doing a professional job of it, you can ‘chum’ up your prose with:

“Thaks a lot!

See u everybody!”

But not in any professional forum (like this one).

Too casual language and poor grammar and spelling could sink you faster than a rock. Many HR people would see “Thaks” or “u” and dump your resume right into the recycling bin.

One last thing. See if you can get some practical hands-on experience as a laborer (or is it labourer) at a solar or wind instillation during your school vacations.
Note how I started with the ‘across the pond’ and ‘Atlantic Puddle’? That’s a no no in real life, but it fits with the tone of your question.

I have been at this kind of stuff for over 40 years

Ruth asks…

How Much Renewable Energy does the Average Company Use?

Im Resering for JMUN (Junior Model United Nations) and I wanted to know this fact. I tryed google but it realy didn’t help.
Help me out
Lilol Lucy McDonald

Windmill Farms answers:

Electricity doesn’t really work like that. Power can be generated by clean wind, wave or hydroelectricity, or low-carbon high risk nuclear power, or good old dirty smelly coal, but it’s all fed into the supply grid, and what comes out is just electricity- you can’t pick and choose only the green stuff. So the proportion of green energy vs. Other forms used by any company is the same proportion used by every other company, or household. The only exceptions would be those few who generate their own power on site. What you need to look up is how much renewable energy is GENERATED in your country, and what percentage of all generated power that is.

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Micro Wind Turbine

Nancy asks…

where can get info about micro turbine?

Micro Turbine

Windmill Farms answers:

I presume you are referring to microhydro turbines.

Go to They have many articles about generating electric power on small scales using micro hydro turbines including details on sizing,head requirements, gpm flow requirements, styles of turbines which work best for particular conditions etc.

They also cover wind turbines as well as photovoltaic systems.

Ruth asks…

Where can I find a company that sells micro wind turbines in Texas? I am looking for one for my home. Thanks?

Windmill Farms answers:

Contact this company:

Helen asks…

How is Technology Developing in More Energy Efficient Devices?

How is Technology Developing in More Energy Efficient Devices?
energy efficient like light bulbs and dysonmotor.

plz! answer quick! i need it 4 my science h/w.

Windmill Farms answers:

A lot of energy efficient devices are on

Such as a Micro Wind Turbine and a Oil Filtration Centrifuge

George asks…

Eco Friendly devices or designs please?

I want some latest or innovative eco friendly devices or designs………..pls urgent!!
Guys i dont want suggestions like that i want new and eco friendly designs or device for my project

Windmill Farms answers: has many devices that are unique and eco friendly.

Http:// This is the Oil Filtration Centrifuge that makes biodiesel, a fuel made from vegetable oil.

Http:// This Micro Wind Turbine is a powerful device for a wind energy source.

Http:// The Greenhouse Kit is easy to assemble, sturdy, and is a unique greenhouse due to it’s UV protection, vent windows, and rainwater spouts.

John asks…

Wind turbine connected to a 230V 50Hz supply system through a semiconductor converter?

this is a coursework question in which i have no clue how to solve, any help would be greatly appreciated ( i worship the person who helped me with this)

Wind turbine connected to a 230V 50Hz supply system through a semiconductor converter. The wind turbine produces 3Kw maximum and is connected to a permenant magnet alternator which produces 50Hz at nominal speed. The system operates over a speed range of +/- 10% of nominal speed. At the lowest speed the alternator voltage is 250V on load. Design a semiconductor system suitable for operation in this application. Focus on electrical design and outline the control strategy required

Windmill Farms answers:

As the generator uses permanent magnets it is not expected that its output can be regulated or controlled to change its characteristics. Therefore the voltage will vary with speed and load, as well as the frequency.

The basic inverter would first rectify the generator output to produce DC which is stored in a reservoir capacitor. The expected range of voltage would be the peak voltage +/-10%, so a nominal 250V x 1.414 = 353.5VDC at the lowest speed, and 20% more at the maximum speed. Additional voltage margin would be required for when the machine was not loaded. The capacitor is sized for acceptable ripple at the lowest frequency. It is likely this DC will be regulated as the output voltage control, using a PWM switch-mode conversion with transformer and filter. This will be a ferrite transformer for higher frequency switch mode operation. The result is a regulated primary DC supply, that can be adjusted to vary the DC voltage. The voltage could be the peak voltage of the load voltage (230V x 1.414).

A switch mode converter can then chop this primary DC voltage using pulse width modulation (PWM) with a sine factor included. The switching configuration could be a half bridge or full (H) bridge depending on the DC input. This chopped DC voltage can be filtered and transformed to produce an isolated sine wave of the appropriate frequency and phase to match the 230V 50Hz system to which it is connected. There are two control systems.

The first control system is to produce a sine wave of specified voltage, frequency and phase with the load connection. This is achieved by varying the PWM timing and widths accordingly, and could use some feedback to regulate the voltage. The phase and frequency can be achieved using the zero crossings of the load as reference, taking into account filter delays. This system is similar to a class D audio amplifier, and also other full sine wave inverters. It just generates a sine wave voltage output with the appropriate phase and frequency. It is conceivable that a voltage sample from the load supply (grid) voltage could be used to provide the sine wave, frequency and phase.

The second control is to load the generator appropriately. The current drawn from the inverter by the load is controlled by modifying the voltage of the synchronised inverter output. That is the primary DC supply voltage. It is assumed the load behaves as a sink like an electrical grid, meaning it will draw whatever power the inverter can generate.

The control of power going to the load seeks the maximum power point (MPP) using an algorithm. The algorithm makes small trial adjustments to the inverter output voltage, closing on the solution. The solution is that the generator output power is maximised. This is the product of generator output voltage and current, with current kept within the generator’s current ratings. Thus the control system maximises the power drawn from the generator at a given wind condition. The IV curve (of current versus voltage) will show a flatter slope around the MPP. This may be achieved by trial steps, closing on a solution, and perhaps assisted by a formula or lookup table describing the generator characteristics.

Other control issues will be determining a threshold and a maximum speed for the generator. Outside these limits the output could be ignored. Some sort of safety control to deal with excess wind is needed . WIth grid connection it is necessary to disconnect the inverter if the grid supply is lost, to prevent back feeding.

The implementation of the PWM and MPP control are probably achieved in a micro-controller or DSP based system, as this would allow greater flexibility with settings to accommodate different systems and development adjustments..

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Is Wind Power Green Essays

Donald asks…

Author Peter Green?

I am finding myself in a bit of a pickle…I cannot for the life of me locate any substantial bibliographic information on the historian and author Peter Green. Any recommendations?

Windmill Farms answers:

Peter (Morris) Green


Entry Updated : 10/17/2001
Birth Place: London, England

Personal Information
Works in Progress

Personal Information: Family: Born December 22, 1924, in London, England; son of Arthur (a barrister-at-law) and Olive (Slaughter) Green; married Lalage Isobel Pulvertaft (a novelist), August 28, 1951 (divorced, July, 1975); married Carin Margreta Christensen, July 18, 1975; children: Timothy Michael, Nicholas Paul, Sarah Francesca. Education: Trinity College, Cambridge University, B.A., 1950, M.A., 1954, Ph.D., 1954. Politics: Liberal. Religion: Catholic. Avocational Interests: Peter Green told CA that he enjoys “music, swimming, spear-fishing, squash (I play five times a week), tennis (of which I’m a besotted aficionado), poetry, Mediterranean travel, meeting interesting people (preferably women), driving fast cars well, studying the political scene with a reasonably realistic eye, teaching as well as I can, doing research that takes me abroad, and only serving on those committees that actually have the power to get things done.” Military/Wartime Service: Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, 1943-47; became sergeant. Memberships: Royal Society of Literature (fellow), Classical Association, American Philological Association, American Association of University Professors, Texas Association of College Teachers, Savile Club (London). Addresses: Home: 1505 Sunnyvale, Apt. 219, Austin, TX 78741; and Methymna, Lesbos, Greece. Agent: David Higham Associates Ltd., 5-8 Lower John St., Golden Square, London W.1, England.

Career: Selwyn College, Cambridge, England, director of studies in classics, 1952-53; Bodley Head, London, England, literary adviser, 1956-57; Hodder & Stoughton Ltd., London, consultant editor, 1959-63. University of Texas at Austin, visiting professor of classics, 1971-72, professor of classics, 1972–. Visiting professor of classics, University of California, Los Angeles, 1976.

Awards: Heinemann Foundation Award, 1957, for The Sword of Pleasure.


* The Expanding Eye: A First Journey to the Mediterranean, Dobson, 1953.

* Achilles His Armour, Murray, 1955, Doubleday, 1967.

* (Under pseudonym Denis Delaney) Cat in Gloves, Gryphon Books, 1956.

* The Sword of Pleasure, World Publishing, 1957.

* Kenneth Grahame: A Biography, World Publishing, 1959 (published in England as Kenneth Grahame, 1859-1932, Murray, 1959).

* Sir Thomas Browne, Longmans, Green, 1959.

* Essays in Antiquity, World Publishing, 1960.

* John Skelton, Longmans, Green, 1960.

* Habeas Corpus, and Other Stories, World Publishing, 1962.

* The Laughter of Aphrodite, Doubleday, 1966.

* Juvenal: The Sixteen Satires, Penguin, 1967, 2nd edition, 1974.

* Armada from Athens: The Failure of the Sicilian Expedition, 415-413 B.C., Doubleday, 1970.

* The Year of Salamis: 480-479 B.C., Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1970.

* Alexander the Great, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1970.

* The Shadow of the Parthenon, University of California Press, 1972.

* A Concise History of Greece to the Close of the Classical Era, Thames & Hudson, 1973.

* The Parthenon, Newsweek Book Division, 1973.

* Alexander of Macedon, 356-323 B.C.: A Historical Biography, Penguin, 1974.

* Ovid: The Erotic Poems, Penguin, 1981.

* (Introduction) The Wind in the Willows, Oxford University Press, 1983.

* Classical Bearings: Interpreting Ancient History and Culture, Thames and Hudson, 1989.

* Alexander to Actium: The Historical Evolution of the Hellenistic Age, University of California Press, 1990.

* (Editor, Introduction) Hellenistic History and Culture, University of California Press, 1993.

* The Greco-Persian Wars, University of California Press, 1996.


* Fountain at Marlieux, by C. Aveline, Roy Publishers, 1954.

* Escape from Montluc, by Andre Devigny, Dobson, 1957, published as Man Escaped, Norton, 1958.

* Child of Our Time, by M. Del Castillo, Knopf, 1958 (published in England as Tanguy; The Story of a Child of Our Times, Muller, 1958).

* Mission Accomplished, by Mongo Beti, Macmillan, 1958 (published in England as Mission to Kala, Muller, 1958).

* Antoine, by Marie Gisele Landes, Muller, 1959.

* Lion, by Joseph Kessel, Knopf, 1959.

* Men of Letters, by Michel de Saint-Pierre, Hutchinson, 1959.

* Children of Lilith, by Guy Piazzini, Dutton, 1960.

* Lottery, by Paul Guimard, Faber, 1959, published as House of Happiness, Houghton, 1960.

* Journey into the Blue, by Gusztav Rab, Pantheon, 1960.

* Destiny of Fire, by Zoe Oldenbourg, Pantheon, 1961.

* Djamila Boupacha, by Simone de Beauvoir and Gisele Hamili, Macmillan, 1962.

* Massacre at Montsegur: A History of the Albigensian Crusade, by Zoe Oldenbourg, Weidenfeld, 1961, Pantheon, 1962.

* The Prime of Life, by Simone de Beauvoir, World Publishing, 1962.

* Diamond River, by Sadio Garavini di Turno, Harcourt, 1963.

* Danton, by Robert Christophe, Doubleday, 1967.

* (And Introduction, Notes, Glossary) The Poems of Exile, Penguin, 1994.

* (And Introduction, Notes, Glossary) The Argonautika: The Story of Jason and the Quest for the Golden Fleece, University of California Press, 1997.

* Also translator of many other works by French and Italian writers.


* Poetry from Cambridge, 1947-50, Fortune Press, 1951.

* Clifton Fadiman, Appreciations, Hodder, 1962.

* Essays by Divers Hands, Volume XXXI, Royal Society of Literature, 1962.

Editor, Cambridge Review, 1950-51; fiction critic, London Daily Telegraph, 1953-63; television critic, Listener, 1962-63; film critic, John O’London’s, 1961-63; book columnist, Yorkshire Post, 1961-62; regular contributor to New York Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement, Bookman, and to other journals.

Works in Progress: A historical and ethnological study in depth of the island of Lesbos, Greece; a commentary on Xenophon’s Voellenica; a translation of and commentary on Ovid’s poems of exile; a firmly pseudonymous novel about expatriates in Greece.

Source: Contemporary Authors Online, Gale, 2002.

Source Database: Contemporary Authors

James asks…

my main topic is the green work environment? can you give me a subtopic?

I’m doing an essay, and my thesis is going green help us save money and save earth at the same time.

Windmill Farms answers:

To save money and the earth at the same time, produce your own energy with solar and wind power; wash out glass, plastic, and metal containers and use them again; and plant a rooftop garden to cool the building, save water, and produce oxygen and food

William asks…

ENGLISH ESSAY????????????????

my teacher asked me to do an essay about THE ENVIRONMENT
and i was wondering if you could answer these questions
1.what is pollution
2.what is global warming
3.what are holes in the ozone layer
4.what are national and world leaders doing
each answer should be about 50 words

Windmill Farms answers:

I’m 12 and even I know all these things by heart. But then again I’m planning to become a meteorologist when I grow up.

1. Pollution is the state of the natural environment being contaminated with harmful substances as a consequence of human activities

2. Global warming is the effects of the ozone lair being broken up by the pollution such as carbon monoxide and other deadly gasses. Basically the increase in the earth’s atmospheric and oceanic temperatures widely predicted to occur due to an increase in the greenhouse effect resulting especially from pollution

3. A hole in the ozone layer is basically a week spot in our atmosphere that cannot block rays from the sun. It makes the planet warmer with the reduced amount of protection.

4.Basically the world leaders are looking for ways to reduce the amount of pollution sent into the air. They are trying to stay “green”. For example more and more wind power mills are being put all over the country to reduce the amount of coal and gas used to produce electricity. Another thing is landfills are starting to use the gas let out from underneath burned and used for electricity too. People are recycling more and more and others are riding their bikes to places instead of using their cars. President Obama said he is including more ideas into the stimulus package for everything and everyone to turn green.

Yes, like I said, I’m only 12.

Mandy asks…

what scope is there for green technology in mechanical engineering ?

(how green technology can chage mechanical engineering convensional methods and what things can green technology do with mechanical engineering)

Windmill Farms answers:

Full answer to that question would be an essay or even a book, but i will try to highlight some points.

– power generation:
— thermodynamics (a huge branch of mechanical engineering) deals with devising more efficient ways of harvesting solar, wind, wave, tidal, geothermal, and nuclear (it’s greener than you think, though not renewable) power.
— it is also relevant to reduction of emissions from existing plants.
— fluid dynamics is a field of mechanical engineering which deals with fluid flow. As such any turbine (wind, hydro) is designed by mechanical engineers

– Cars: designing alternate fuel (or hybrid) engines, but the majority of the impact is on large engines like busses, class 8 trucks etc.

- Design
— design for recycling – emphasis in design is shifting (veeeeery slowly) towards design for easy disassembly such that different materials can be recycled easier (BMW is a pioneer in that, Xerox a bit too, they take back their photocopiers to salvage parts)
— design for environment – i’m not kidding, it exists. Deals with things like choosing to bend a piece of metal instead of spending energy cutting and welding, or casting. Essentially design to use less energy during fabrication.

I’m sure there are more things. These are just some off top of my head. Hope it helps.

EDIT: i just remembered, one of my profs is working on fuel cell technology.

Linda asks…

Solar Power questions!?

I just have a few, please give me an answer not just a website or copy from a site(definitely not wikipedia)
-Can anyone explain what active and passive solar energy is
-Is it true that solar panels create pollution, if so how is it better used in space?
-When silicon or other semiconductors in solar cells absorb solar energy do the create electricity because the electrons “move” instead of shaking and producing heat?

Oh yeah just curious and I don’t really need an answer for this right now, but do u think this is a good introduction to an essay about solar power? I’m afraid it might be a little off topic (ignore the parentheses and numbers they’re sites from my bibli)
Thousands of years ago the Chinese began to use coal for a source of fuel.(7) Since then the needs and demands for coal and other fossil fuels have gradually increased, especially during the last few decades.(3) These fossil fuels are materials like petroleum, coal and natural gas that were formed millions of years ago from living matter. With the overuse of this nonrenewable material people have begun to wonder what will happen when it runs out, what sort of energy source will be used after all fossil fuels have been used up. In response to this growing problem people all over the world are racing to create a new source of energy to replace this ever diminishing supply of fossil fuels. As these fossil fuels are burned to create electricity though, gases are also released into the air. Carbon dioxide, Sulfur dioxide and Nitrogen oxide are all gases that are released when fossil fuels are burned. These gases are known to cause global warming and acid rain.(1)
Energy sources that can replace these fossil fuels are called alternative energies. With alternative energies or “Green Energies”, people will be able to have a cleaner and more sustainable energy source. Hydroelectric power which is produced from falling water, geothermal power that is produced from the heat inside the earth and wind power that is made from moving air or wind are all possible replacements. Another possibility is also available. By using power from something that is constantly facing the earth and giving off its power whether we harness it or not we can be provided with an unlimited amount of energy. A source of power that aside from the cost of the material needed to capture its power is free; this power source is the sun, a yellow dwarf star that is 93 million miles from the Earth. The electricity produced would be able to constantly power people’s homes, cars and other electronics. How can people do such a thing though? What do they need to convert this energy that has existed for over five billion years into electricity? During the research the researcher wished to understand the potential of solar power as an alternative energy. During this research the researcher will also explain how solar power works, the history of solar power and the benefits to using it as an alternative energy.

Windmill Farms answers:

What a lot to read. Ignoring the essay
-Can anyone explain what active and passive solar energy is
Active is collecting the energy and moving it as hot liquid, air, steam, or electricity. Passive is having the sun shine in windows and soak into heavy masonry walls or other collection masses that give up the heat at night.

-Is it true that solar panels create pollution, if so how is it better used in space?
No solar panels do not create pollution in use. Making of silicon solar cells may involve industrial pollution.

-When silicon or other semiconductors in solar cells absorb solar energy do they create electricity because the electrons “move” instead of shaking and producing heat? No, heating involves molecular vibration. Silicon and other semiconductors involve the photons of light increasing the energy orbits of electrons and the potential then translates to an electrical voltage that can be moved as transistors control electricity.

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Wind Power Pros And Cons

Sandy asks…

Do you think it is feasible for Singapore to harness wind energy?

What are the pros and cons?What are the alternatives?

Windmill Farms answers:

It is an effective method of power in Singapore as it is so close to the ocean. Therefore, the wind speed is high enough. Besides, the country has the technologies to harness it properly.

There r several alternatives, like tidal engery, wave energy, thermal, hydro etc etc

Donna asks…

the government’s efforts to build multiple nuclear plants in the country?

The demand for power in India has been constantly growing. However, power generation has not kept pace with demand, leading to frequent power cuts in several parts of India. Against this backdrop, assess the government’s efforts to build multiple nuclear plants in the country. What are the pros and cons of nuclear power? Considering that countries like the US have not constructed new nuclear power plants in the last few decades due to the high costs involved and other reasons, how does one justify the Indian government’s plans? Support your argument with facts and figures.

Windmill Farms answers:

Nuclear Pros and Cons
!. Fission is the most energy for the least fuel with current technology.
2. Less fuel means less waste, and the waste is all accounted for, not released into the atmosphere to become someone else’s problem.
3. Uranium is readily available, very common in the earth’s crust (about the same as tin)
4. Economical – operating cost about the same as coal, fuel cost is a much smaller percentage of the total, therefore less susceptible to price fluctuations.
5. Reliable – Nuclear power plants have very high capacity factors, Much higher than solar or wind
6. No combustion, no Co, CO2 or SO2 released.
7. Creates high paying, skilled jobs.
8. Reduce dependence on foreign oil/ fuel. Uranium available domestically and in oceans.
9. High temperature reactors could produce Hydrogen as well as electricity.
10. Fantastic safety record.
11, Does not require back-up and storage facilities like solar and wind.
12. More economical than solar per Mw produced.
13. Much smaller footprint, takes up less land than Solar or wind.

1. Irrational fear of all things nuclear.
2. High cost to build and license, large initial investment for long term pay back.
3. Publicly accepted high level storage facility not domestically available.
4. Reprocessing facility not domestically available.
4. High cost of personnel.
5. Security concerns, proliferation and terrorism.
Nuclear power, I believe is the best, safest, most reliable, current technology to provide energy. The plants operating now are safe and the new designs are even safer.
Building 100′s of new nuclear power plants would improve the economy, reduce or eliminate dependence on foreign oil, create jobs, reduce pollution, and provide for future technological advancement.
I have been working with nuclear power for about 30 years, I would be glad to have a Nuclear power plant or high level waste disposal facility in my backyard. My family and I live in a home within 10 miles of a nuclear power plant. (where I work) I have a great understanding of the risks involved and am completely comfortable with a plant “in my backyard”.
Using Chernobyl as a reason not to build is like saying because of the Hindenburg I will never fly in a commercial airliner.
Nuclear power has the smallest environmental impact of any current energy production method per unit of energy produced. One fuel pellet about the size of a pencil eraser produces the same energy as about 1 ton of coal, and if reprocessed 2/3 of what’s left can be reclaimed. Nuclear power is our best option for reliable, environmentally friendly, base-load electrical power.

Mary asks…

What’s the difference between Brick, Frame, vs Vinyl Construction?

I am looking at different house listings and wanted to know what the pros vs cons were for brick, frame and vinyl construction. This is the first time I’ve heard of vinyl construction as well.

Also, what is the difference between the different types of heat? Hot Water vs Oil vs Gas?

Thank you!

Windmill Farms answers:

Most houses have wooden or metal studded walls. The exterior can be finished with brick, wood, vinyl, etc. In the southern states (mostly) a lot of houses are built out of concrete blocks, with no wooden framing. This is due to termites and tropical storms. As far as pros and cons that would depend on your preference.i will give you cons, wood requires maintenance, painting, staining, replacement of weathered or rotten wood. Brick is more durable and has less maintenance but will require pointing up of the mortar joints after a while. Vinyl siding and pvc trim boards will expand and contract with the weather. Sometimes looking wavy or exposing gaps between panels. The color also fades over time. The concrete the block is made of in block houses will in time will start to deteriorate and crumble, requiring block replacement or pointing up. I prefer a wooden framed house with a vinyl sided exterior. Heating systems, hot water in my opinion is the most efficient type of heat. Hot air heating can easily be paired with central air conditioning. Energy type is a matter of preference and availability, solar, wind power, oil, gas, thermal energy, all today are viable energy sources. Hope i helped good luck

Steven asks…

Does anybody know the pros and cons for coal energy wind energy and pumped storage energy?

Also could anybody provide me with a detailed conclusion as to which of these energy sources would be best to supply England’s electricity needs comparing all 3 to each other weighing up the pros and cons.I will give best answer to most detailed and helpful answer.Thanx in advance

Windmill Farms answers:

None of them. Why only these three? Love it or hate it nuclear will be the only option once the oil and gas starts to run out. Start by looking at just how much power is needed in this power hungry country , the figures are mind boggling, then by how much we don’t need to use. Wind is no option at all, it is mostly just hot air. Not only far too expensive and not at all as environmentally friendly as the ‘pro’ lobby make out, just on sheer size and materials going into what is little more than an oversize car alternator. It is unreliable due to maintenance requirements (it is highly mechanical) appart from the known problems of it is not there when you most need it ie on a cold still winter day. Water power, now that could be an option but is not very glamourous, not expensive enough to attract any big money and may even end up generating enough power to pay for itself, thus not requiring council interference. Seriously, moving water has an awful lot of energy stored in it. If every weir, lock and waterfall had a small turbine or water-wheel it would at least give reliable, constant and cheap energy over a long period. Water wheels have been around for a long time so not very attractive, but made from carbon fibre instead of wood or iron would be much more efficient. However, as a percentage of the total energy needed, probably only a few percent, just not there, but fun with pay-back. Pumped storage is about 40% efficient and by definition requires a fuelled supply to make it work, but at least far better than wind, a ‘must’ for peak hour boost power. Coal can do it, but at a cost to the environment that we very aware of ei 3 clean shirts and 2 showers a day to wash away the grime, and that was in the countryside! … No thanks. Oil and gas, well, that is running out, probably faster than we are allowed to know, it is very much a finite supply.

Susan asks…

Pros and cons of different alternative energy?

1. Geothermal
2. Solar
3. Wind power
4. Hydroelectric
5. Biomass
Those are some of the alternative energy please give us some more if there are any and some websites thx:)

Windmill Farms answers:

To say that any of this is free is to misunderstand economics. The raw material, be it electromagnetic radiation, heat, kinetics, gravity, or chemical is readily available. The cost is in the effort to make it usable. In other words wind may be free, windmills are not.

Geothermal works only in places where there is hot magma near the surface. Iceland has made great use of geothermal power.

Solar is the most promising. Sun is readily available in much of the world (polar regions during their winter being the exception). Biggest drawback is that it isn’t available at night, however power usage surges during the day so it is most available when most needed. The cost is a bit prohibitive, but technology is slowly making solar power competitive. We will see the day where in more tropical latitudes every square inch of rooftop is covered in solar panels.

Wind is unsteady and usually the most available where it is least needed. The high plains have lots of wind potential, and not many people to consume it. This means long distance transmission, with its attendant costs.

Hydroelectric, most of the good rivers in the west already are dammed, though there is plenty of potential in the rest of the world. Tidal and ocean currents have great potential, but the cost and technical challenges are prohibitive.

Biomass, similar problems to coal and oil, puts carbon particulate matter into the air. Waste from crops or garbage is a good use of otherwise unused material, but when we go to corn or cane we are taking food supplies generally from the poorest and diverting it to energy generally for the richer world.

For all these ideas, coal and oil are going to be king for quite some time to come.

Actually the biggest source of untapped energy is in reducing usage, better insulation, telecommuting, smarter homes and appliances for instance.

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Vertical Wind Power

John asks…

What is the difference between these wind turbines? if you can please provide sources.?

the types of wind turbines i found was
industrial, agricultural, commercial, municipal, and residential
what is the difference between these?!
which wind turbine is used where.
I only know residential is for homes & its the smallest of all the wind turbines
but what about the others?
also compare their sizes please
thank you


Windmill Farms answers:

There are two types of wind turbines: horizontal axis wind turbines HAWT (like a propellor blade) and vertical axis wind turbines (VAWT).
A horizontal axis wind turbine makes a lot of noise because there is an increasing velocity of the turbine blade as you go out from the hub to the tip.
A VAWT is very quiet because each part of the blade moves at the same velocity around a central vertical axis. A VAWT may comprise 2, 3, or more blades held on struts.
A HAWT must track into wind before it can generate power, a VAWT is always facing the wind.
Wind turbines generate power as a function of the cross sectional area of the blade system facing the wind. If a HAWT has 30m long blades – they turn in a circle and the cross sectional area presented to the wind is the area of this circle = pi x 30 x 30 = 2827sq.m
A VAWT turns as a cylinder and the area presented to the wind is the height of the blade x diameter of the turbine. A VAWT with a 30 m blade height and a diameter of 20m has a 600sq m cross sectional area.

Wind turbines are on towers so that they can capture the higher wind speeds.
The power of the wind varies as the cube of the wind speed.

Industrial wind turbines are typically in the same category as commercial turbines which generate electricity on a wind farm. Typically these turbines have a power of 1-10 megaWatts
Agricultural turbines may have a power of 30kiloWatts and are usually situated at some distance from the power grid.
Municipal wind turbines is not an official term – it may refer to turbines in towns and cities and there are planning regulations which make such deployment difficult.
On the tops of highrise buildings the wind velocities are very high and this is where turbines may be placed.
Residential turbines are those which are on the roofs of houses or in back gardens. The powers of these turbines are typically 2-5kW.
Remember that wind turbines are generally rated at a wind speed of 11m/sec and you cannot get more than about 40% of the energy of the wind.
In the real world, average wind speeds are around 5m/sec unless you live off a coast facing Atlantic or Pacific winds. Also, average means AVERAGE, So in winter there may be 20 days at 10m/sec which is where the power is.
Wind turbines also use power for their own electronics and many have to be powered to start up. Consequently, you will not waste power trying to start up the turbine if the wind speed isn’t high enough to maintain a net positive power output. Typically, wind turbines have a cut-in wind speed of 3.5m/sec.
Wind turbines need to be correctly sited in a good windy location and the wind data must first be sought. Planning permission must be applied for.

Michael asks…

Where can i buy a horizontal and vertical wind turbine that produce electricity?

Windmill Farms answers:

Hey ST, I’m surprised nobody has responded to this yet. Actually, there are lots of places that manufacture and sell horizontal wind turbines, but very few vertical. The reason is the vertical units are horribly inefficient. Despite what you may have heard or seen, or people have said about them, they are handy for little water pumps in the garden, or to run a few small LED lights, but even a large one will never run anything of significance.

If you are really in the market for a wind turbine, my best suggestion is first to get a subscription to Home Power Magazine. It is inexpensive, they run articles on lots of things to do with making your own energy, including wind turbines. About every third issue or so they will pick one item, like wind turbines, and compare all the different commercially available ones with all the ratings, power curves, prices and so on, so you can really compare them. Then most of the vendors run advertisements in the magazine as well. We started subscribing 12 years ago, today our home is completely powered by the wind and sun. If you subscribe, you will have access to the archived articles on their website, and you can look back at the issues that rate all the different wind turbines as soon as your subscription is started. There are some other places to get info, I will list some below. Good luck, and take care, Rudydoo

Ruth asks…

Why hasn’t some organisation offered payment for a contest to make the most effecient vertical wind turbine?

If vertical wind turbines could be made thin enough and effecient enough, they could be placed on house rooftops and be very discrete (maybe only about 12 inch tall and 12 feet diameter). A top plate could conceal the spinnig blades. The contest could require that the turbines have a max area, max height, and must work for a certain amount of time (months?). On the start date, entrants would build their turbines on a specific site. The organisation(s) sponsoring the contest would get the rights to the generated electricity. The group with the most effecient turbine after the time frame would win the prize money. Entrants would also pay to enter. I think this would be a great opportunity for many engineering universities and for the organisation(s) sponsoring it. It could also lead to MANY new “rooftop” turbine concepts that could help power individual homes, without having the large “windmill tower”. Maybe a similar concept could be used for the most effecient solar panel?
I am talking about a “Savonius Wind Turbine” type…. Google for pictures. It has a vertical axis and the wind turns the blades from the side. But apparently, there is not a “perfect” design for the blades, hence the contest.

Windmill Farms answers:

Vertical axis wind turbines have a natural appeal because of the design simplicity and because you don’t have to point them into wind. The problem is that they are not as efficient as the wind axis turbines. The Savonius rotor windmill is very inefficient extracting only about 15% of the wind’s energy (similar to the multi-blade American farm windmill. A windmill only 12 inches tall and 12 feet across and only a few feet above your rooftop would not produce any significant amount of energy. Part of the reason wind turbines are up so high is because that’s where most of the wind energy is. I spent several years dreaming about a vertical axis wind turbine design usually called a Giromill or cycloturbine or cyclogyro. I had a huge Excel spreadsheet calculating the lift and drag on each blade at each position around the circle, all based upon the (faulty) assumption that the wind speed and direction were essentially not affected by my turbine. WRONG. When you extract power from the wind, it slows down and the wind behind it starts to “pile up” and go around the windmill instead of through it. Ever wonder why the big wind axis turbines have so few blades. This is why. Adding more blades would decrease the power because it would slow the wind down too much and most of the wind would just go around and avoid the windmill entirely. The term is solidity and both the Savonius Rotor and American farm windmill have way to much of it. The only vertical axis windmill that came close to competing with the wind axis turbines is the Darrieus rotor, which looks sort of like an egg beater. I’ve given up on windmills, but I’m still working on a home solar energy system.

Mary asks…

Do you believe investtin in wind power will be the way of the future? Explain.?

Windmill Farms answers:

Wind rates and speed on off
input and output does not always balance
to get x watt of current, y diameter of rotor blades should be put, but a minimum of z m/s of wind should be blown on the blades for it to turn..

See like all those stuffs are inter connected.. A deficiency in any of those might cause changes in results..

There are the vertical turbines, they are more efficient but the only problem is, the wind can’t turn the blades, they have to be turned with some hand push or electrical stuffs, things like that…

As the above said, it won’t be enough to satisfy the increase in demand.. Like to power a normal home with 1 person living in it, it will require like 100batteries with 2-4 wind rotors and at least like 8-12 m/s of wind for some huge amount of hours……… So…. Its not worth it at all…

Unless some peeps start to cut off by supplying their water heater or whatever with sun or air… Like the washing machine and boiler works with sun and wind energy(converted) whereas the rest still uses the normal electrical energy… Yeh know>? Well hope you understood, coz i sux sox at explaining :P

Paul asks…

Where can i get vertical wind turbine plans?

I want to find some plans to build my own wind turbine. I am happy to spend a few dollars to get the plans. Has anyone built a wind turbine from plans? Which plans are good?

Windmill Farms answers:

Yes i have built a wind turbine from a plan. The best wind turbine plans will have diagrams, pictures, video, email support and also a discussion forum where others who are building their own wind turbine can discuss how they are going and ask other builders questions.

Check out the review of vertical wind turbine plans here:

I bought the first one and was surprised at how good it is. It really produces a good amount of free energy for my home.

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