Monday, 11 February 2013

Wind Generators

In days of yore, the weather was calm. Smoke would rise straight up. The clouds would sit lethargic. Washing would hang, lank and damp from it's pegs, with only the heat of the sun to dry it. For millions if not billions of years. Nothing. The leaves of the trees rustled not. True, the downdraught from the beating wings of a passing pterodactyl might briefly stir an eddy, but the prospect for kite flying was pretty bleak.

Then along came humankind, and for millennia more, still nothing changed. Then, at some indeterminate point, and perhaps independently in many places and at different times, the first wind generators were created.

These early devices, powered as they were by heavy wheels or simple water pumps were sparse, and the amount of wind they produced was almost negligable.

(Some early examples)

But as the rate of progress has burgeoned over the past century or so, so has the presence and capacity of these machines. Over the last couple of decades in particular, these devices have started to pop up everywhere.

Unlike the older type, inhabited by clog shod mice, these modern wind generators are powered by electricity. The biggest ones can consume as much as 10 Mw/H.

(a modern wind farm)

Take any windy day, and you won't have to look far to see the culprits. These things are out there, with their aerodynamically advanced blades whizzing around, creating as much wind as they possibly can. On a calm day of course, their blades rotate lazily if at all.

Resistance to their ever increasing number is growing. Some of the protests are just nimbyism of course. People in areas of high wind worry about the effect on the value of their homes, and claim that further generators will not only impede the views, but kill birds, and topple trees.

Others wonder what we will do with all this wind we're producing. Why not produce different kinds of weather? Like Acid Rain? Or radioactive fallout? Why the obsession with wind?

One thing is for sure though. Despite the objections, as supplies of fossil fuels diminish, humankind's need to create weather means we will be seeing a lot more of these things in the future.

driving lessons in Wallasey? learn to drive in Wirral? driving instructor in Birkenhead?

1 comment:

Pete said...

Took me a couple of paragraphs to figure out what you were on about.