How do wind turbines generate
Wind turbines have a rotor (a hub with three blades),
a power shaft and a generator to convert wind energy into electrical energy. Wind passes over the rotor and makes
it spin. This spinning motion is used by the generator to produce electricity.
The amount of energy produced depends on wind speed and the diameter of the rotor. Because wind
speed increases with height, the wind turbines are mounted on towers. A good location for wind turbines should
have average annual wind speeds of at least 12 miles per hour. Small changes in average wind speed are important.
Even a one-mile-per-hour increase in wind speed makes a significant difference in the power available to generate
Do the turbines affect
TV or radio reception?
Several thousand towers have been erected in Europe andCalifornia. The majority of these turbines have not caused any signal
interference. MGE sited the wind turbines to minimize signal interference. MGE fixed any TV signal problems
nearby neighbors had.
Are birds affected by
taken to locate wind turbines away from sensitive wildlife areas such as wetlands and migratory paths. MGE’s
wind site was reviewed by independent agencies for environmental impacts including bird mortality. Ongoing
studies at our site have shown that bird mortality has not been a problem.
What happens when the wind doesn’t blow?
The turbines are dependent on the wind to produce electricity. On a calm day, the turbines won’t
be able to produce power. But electricity is still available; other power plants will adjust their output to make
up the difference.
What happens if lightning
strikes a wind turbine?
Each wind turbine is protected from lightning by a grounding
system. In the event of a strike, the system guides the electrical energy safely to ground. This system is
similar to the lightning
Can wind turbines blend into
The turbines are located in open terrain to have access
to the wind. Better equipment designs and careful planning dramatically improve the appearance of wind farms