Wind Energy Definition

Jenny asks…

Can wind carry radiation?

Windmill Farms answers:

Short answer: No.

Longer answer:

It’s important to know the difference between radiation, radioactive material, irradiated material, and radiation contamination. So, some definitions:


Radiation — Radiation is energy that comes from a source and travels through some material or through space. Light and heat are both types of radiation; so is ionizing radiation.

Ionizing radiation– radiation produced by unstable atoms. Unstable atoms differ from stable atoms because they have an excess of energy or mass or both. Unstable atoms are said to be radioactive.

Radioactive materials — materials, such as solids, liquids, and gases, that consist of unstable atoms that give off ionizing radiation. Different radioactive atoms (such as uranium, cesium, plutonium, etc.) behave differently in terms of how they travel through the environment and what kind of damage they can do to living cells.

Irradiated material — any kind of substance that has been exposed to radiation.


What the wind can carry is particles, including radioactive materials and irradiated materials.

When radioactive materials come in contact with live things, like people and foods, we say that they have experienced radioactive contamination.

Contamination in the form of gases, liquids, or solids that are released into the environment can contaminate people externally, internally, or both.

Take a look at the two websites below for more information on radioactive contamination.

The source of irradiated materials right now is the Japanese nuclear plants that are overheating. When an explosion occurs, these particles are spewed up into the air. From there they are carried by the wind in whatever direction it blows.

However, substantial dispersion takes place, both vertically and laterally. Its intensity varies inversely with roughly between the square and the cube of the distance. So they will be extremely diluted–compared to their concentration when emitted– by the time they reach, say, North America.

Keep reading the scientific analyses, which will get better as the circumstances are understood. For example, I’m not sure at this moment whether any containers that contain the radioactive fuel itself have ruptured.

Michael asks…

sustainable energy…?

what else is there besides wind, solar, geothermal, tidal, hydro
is there any else???

Windmill Farms answers:


NB: by definition Sustainable Energy is the provision of energy such that it meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.

Charles asks…

What is Energy produced by atomic reactions?


Whats energy produced from burning organic matterials such as wood?
Whats energy produced by heat beneath earth’s surface?
Whats energy that turns a windmill, which pumps water or produces electricity?


Windmill Farms answers:

Energy created in a nuclear reaction is called nuclear energy, or atomic energy.

Energy from sunlight is stored as chemical energy in wood and other organic material, using a process called photosynthesis. This energy is released as heat when wood is burned.

Geothermal energy is produced by heat beneath earth’s surface.

It is wind energy that turns a windmill, which pumps water or produces electricity.

Gasohol, sometimes called ,E10 is a fuel mixture of 10% anhydrous ethanol and 90% gasoline that can be used in the internal combustion engines of most modern automobiles and light-duty vehicles without need for any modification on the engine or fuel system.

Waste also referred to as rubbish, trash, refuse, garbage, or junk is unwanted or unusable materials.

Hydroelectricity is electricity generated by hydropower, i.e., the production of electrical power through the use of the gravitational force of falling or flowing water. It is the most widely used form of renewable energy. Once a hydroelectric complex is constructed, the project produces no direct waste, and has a considerably lower output level of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) than fossil fuel powered energy plants.

Geothermal power (from the Greek roots geo, meaning earth, and thermos, meaning heat) is power extracted from heat stored in the earth. This geothermal energy originates from the original formation of the planet, from radioactive decay of minerals, and from solar energy absorbed at the surface.

Solar energy, radiant light and heat from the sun, has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. Solar radiation, along with secondary solar-powered resources such as wind and wave power, hydroelectricity and biomass, account for most of the available renewable energy on earth. Only a minuscule fraction of the available solar energy is used.

Biomass, a renewable energy source, is biological material derived from living, or recently living organisms, such as wood, waste, and alcohol fuels. Biomass is commonly plant matter grown to generate electricity or produce heat. For example, forest residues (such as dead trees, branches and tree stumps), yard clippings, wood chips and garbage may be used as biomass. However, biomass also includes plant or animal matter used for production of fibers or chemicals. Biomass may also include biodegradable wastes that can be burnt as fuel. It excludes organic materials such as fossil fuels which have been transformed by geological processes into substances such as coal or petroleum.

Wind is the flow of gases on a large scale. On Earth, wind consists of the bulk movement of air. In outer space, solar wind is the movement of gases or charged particles from the sun through space, while planetary wind is the outgassing of light chemical elements from a planet’s atmosphere into space.

James asks…

A few questions about energy resources?

a few questions here:
1) Are solar collectors cheap?
2) Are wind generators cheap?
3) What are some reasons not to use solar collectors?
4) What are some reasons not to use wind generators?
i need these for a project.

Windmill Farms answers:

Depends on your definition of “cheap.” You can get a small (1 inch by 1 inch) solar collector for perhaps $20. Building a big one like you see on rooftops can be done for $200 minimum. Buying a rooftop kit runs $600 at least and can cost over $10,000.

Now I don’t know of any cheap wind generators. You are probably talking thousands of dollars for a wind generator. And building one is no easy task. It has to be anchored sufficiently to handle the strongest wind.

Solar collectors have no real disadvantages other than cost. The flexible sheet style solar collectors contain cadmium, a toxic metal. Wind generators are tall and unsightly, and most likely violate the zoning laws where you live. They are also not cost effective. Plus, the spinning turbines can kill birds. The noise can be distracting, and get you into a lawsuit with your neighbors. Windmills are best employed far away from civilization.

George asks…

Are geothermal, tidal, solar, and wind energy all inexhaustible?

Someone asked me which one was exhaustible I said none, they looked at me like I was stupid.

Windmill Farms answers:

Inexhaustible means it’s something we can’t use up and then it’s gone.

For example, we won’t run out of sun no matter how much we use (although we may run into a practical limit as to how many solar collectors we can put up without blocking each other). Theoretically the sun will die in 5,000,000,000 years or so, but until then, we can use it’s power without using it up.

We won’t run out of heat at the earth’s core no matter how much we use. It may be *theoretically* possible to use up the heat in the core so fast that it cools to uselessness, but there is really no geothermal system that would actually do that, so for all practical purposes it is inexhaustible, at least for as long as tidal and gravity induced heating of our core keeps it going.

As long as we have weather (which will likely be until the sun dies or our atmosphere dissipates) we will have wind. Wind speed may be reduced on the downwind side of wind farms, limiting how big they may be, but the farm itself won’t run out of wind. The same goes for tides — as long as we have the sun and the moon, we will have tides.

As you can see, there are, technically, some situations where these types of power will no longer be viable, but it is so far in the future that, for practical purposes, we won’t run out just by using them — which satisfies a practical definition of “inexhaustible”.

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