How windmills work 

Published: 09th April 2009
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Windmills are very popular these days. Especially due to the energetic problems. The windmill is a simple machine which transforms the wind energy in electric power. It uses the energy of the wind to firstly rotate the blades. The blades have the role to transform their rotation into electric energy, or energy for pumping water or grinding the grain.Most of the windmills today are made of lightweight materials made of special composites. They also assemble high tech turbines. Yet a windmill can be constructed like the old times too. You can build one using basic tools and materials. As you understand how windmills work it's easy to build a windmill.A basic thing you have to have in your mind while building a windmill is your goal. And your goal is to convert the wind energy into electrical energy as efficiently as possible. Your windmill must be tall enough to reach the higher winds. The blades you will use have to transform the flow of the wind in rotation without too much friction. Because friction means loss of energy. There are two types of wind mills. The first one spins the blades vertically and are called horizontal axis windmills. The second type is the turbines.A windmill has 4 basic components: the base, the tower, the wind blades and the nacelle.The base has to be made of concrete. Its weight has to be considerably higher than of the rest of the windmill. For smaller windmills you can use something like sand bags.The tower is a solid construction. It has to be very stable but as tall as possible. The tower is usually thicker near the base and thinner as it goes up.The wind blades are similar to the ones used by a helicopter. They have the same properties as the ones used by flying machines.The nacelle is used to connect the wind blades to the tower. You can buy nacelles from the Internet.Once you understood the way windmills work it is a simple and fun project to learn how to build a windmill.


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