How Wind Works (Tom Wind, Energy Consultant)
Are the answers to our energy problems blowin' in the wind? Tom Wind (yes that's his real name) evaluates the resource.
Transcript: How Wind Works
The way we get energy out of the wind is to use wind turbines like we have -- that you can see right here right now -- and the wind turbines have typically three big blades. And they are designed by computer to capture as much energy out of the wind as you can. Those are connected to a big shaft, which goes into a gear box, which increases the speed. You can see that the blades are turning fairly slowly, about 25 -30 rpm, but we need a faster speed for the generator. The gear box speeds up -- increases the speed -- and is attached to a generator which is in a cell on top of the tower. And then there are electric cables that go from the generator down the tower and go into some electrical cabinets at the base of the tower. And then from the electrical cabinets the power is conditioned and it goes to the green transformer sitting right by the base of the wind turbine. Then there are underground cables from the transformer that go down to the road and to an overhead power line. And in this area there are a number of overhead power lines that collect all of the power from the wind turbines, and carry it back to a substation, where it's stepped up to an even higher voltage of 161,000 volts and then that power is put onto the grid, where it goes.