Chapter 2

The Wind Energy Resource

Abstract

Wind is the movement of air in the atmosphere in response to pressure changes. These pressure changes are caused by energy input, the most important source of which is the sun. The air currents caused by these pressure differences are intermittent and difficult to predict accurately but modern forecasting can help. Wind sites are classified by their average wind speed. The amount of energy available increases with the cube of the wind speed so higher wind speeds can provide much more energy. Wind speed increases with height above the ground so turbines on tall towers can generally harvest more energy. Wind turbulence can create stress and fatigue in turbine components and this is greater closer to the ...

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