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Creating Energy-Wind

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Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Wed Mar 01, 2017 2:10 am

Wind power counjurers up the huge turbines blighting the countryside and spoiling the scenery as well as killing huge numbers of birds and flying insects to the point that the companies operating them have to employ huge nunbers of cleaners to remove the dead birds on a daily basis to stop a huge outcry from wildlife enthusiasts, basically hiding the problem.

For a domestic installation we find wind power can be scaled down to compact turbines and anyone with basic DIY skills can install them at home themselves, there are a few issues though, wind power is much more efficient than solar power and its much cheaper to buy and install a system, it isn't as consistent as a water powered system but it isn't as inconsistent as solar power, and you can add more turbines as funds permit, so it is a very useful as an off grid installation or as a system installed on an urban house. Wind power works by generating power and storing it in batteries and unlike solar power which is dependent upon the sun or light, it works 24 hours a day as long as it has wind to power it, and you can be sound asleep knowing that unlike the more expensive solar power, your wind powered system is working and charging your batteries while you snore.

Three main components make up a wind turbine system and these are the turbine generator, the regulator or controller, and the batteries.

We can break this down again as three main types of generating head exist, these are the basic manual head, the mechanically controlled head, and the advanced electronically controlled head, so which do we choose? The basic head is just that, its basic, its output is governed by the windspeed and if the windspeed gets too high it will overspeed the unit and burn it out and to prevent this you have to go to the unit and physically apply the brake to stop it spinning and shutting off your electricity supply; hext we have the mechanically controlled unit which uses centrifugal weights to apply a mechanical braking system to slow the turbine speed down so it cannot overspeed, but it requires you to maintain the brakes periodically, but it requires no intervention to stop it in very windy conditions.
Electronic systems work in several ways, many have a third wire connection which feeds electricity back into the motor/generator and in the event of excessive wind some of the current feeds back to form an electronic brake and slows the turbine down to its safe limits; some have electronically controlled vanes which are turned if the windspeed it too high and by reducing the angle and pitch of the vanes the unit slows, the final one is the rotating base which rotates the turbine in increments, out of the optimum generating position.
This means that a braked unit is necessary for a fit and forget installation and your choice is narrowed to the mechanically braked unit or the electronically braked units.

Controllers/regulators are a most essential piece of kit as they control the voltage and amperage (current) coming from your turbine and regulate both the voltage and current your batteries receives, too much voltage will fry the batteries and if they are the lead-acid type the electrolyte will evaporate rapidly, electronics have moved on and modern electronic regulators are the type to have as they supply the battery/batteries with optimum voltage and current at all times. Many modern regulators also have a feedback or monitoring circuit which will connect to one, or more batteries and tell the regulator the exact state of charge of the battery/batteries and supply the correct charge; many batteries in a heavily discharged state need a much higher voltage and much lower current to allow them to accept a higher current quicker so a feedback curcuit is essential.

Spend wisely on the controller and get the best for your money; many suppliers of wind turbine kits will swap a basic controller for an advanced regulator for the price difference.

Batteries are the biggest problem with any system and this is because people dont understand them, often you see basic cheapie car batteries connected to a system and people wonder why they fail, or they fail to deliver the systems full potential, so lets explain batteries.
Batteries suffer from their duty cycle and in simple terms this is the amount of charge and discharge cycles they can tolerate without becoming damaged; then we have the amount of discharge they can cope with before they become damaged.
Basic car batteries are designed for a short discharge period which is when they discharge to power the vehicles starter motor and once the engine is running they receive charge from the vehicles charging system, they do not cope well with high discharges and are usually called regular duty batteries and are usually lead acid types. Discharge a regular battery much above 30% of its rated capacity and it will not recover, accept charge, and is scrap so avoid them.

Semi deep cycle batteries are better known as Leisure Batteries and are the same types as used in caravans, motorhomes, and boats where there is a seperate battery to power the systems of these vehicles; externally they may look the same or very similar to the regular car battery but internally they are much more robust and their plates are of a much heavier construction so they can withstand discharges of 40-45% and many more discharge/charge cycles than the regular battery.

Deep cycle batteries are the only ones to have as they are the most robust of all the constructions and will readily accept 60% discharges without damage and many times more discharge/charge cycles than a semi deep cycle battery, they are also the most expensive battery and ironically they are also the most cost effective battery to buy; beware though as there are some current scams which are battery manufacturers and suppliers selling you a deep cycle battery and calling it other things such as a solar battery or a wind turbine battery. Do not fall for this scam as they are all deep cycle batteries, as are traction batteries, and the only difference is the price.

When selecting a charge regulator/controller and a battery/battery pack you have to match the regulator/controller to the correct battery type, if the regulator you choose is for a lead acid battery then only use a lead acid battery and not a calcuim or gel battery as they require controller, if you use a gel battery or a calcuim battery then ensure your controller is matched to these battery types.


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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by urchinatheart on Thu Mar 02, 2017 11:37 pm

Very helpful information here, thank you. That's probably saved some of us many hours of research and probably £££'s as well! As the winds get stronger and more erratic, are there materials which could lend flexibility to a compact turbine generator, so that it could bend away from the blast like a young sapling instead of being destroyed or catching fire? Those propeller blades always look rather like slashing knives as they move through the air. Are there bird-friendly designs of turbine ? Any suggestions for websites please?

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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:52 am

For bird friendly designs I modify them and make a fine mesh cage to cover them.

Some do get erratic as the winds get stronger and need you to manually stop and lock them, other designs have braking systems.

If you get a kit it is best to get the mountings so you can screw it to the side of a building and ensure you mount them high enough so nobody can reach them with their arms at full stretch.

Due to the advancing technologies and differing designs I would suggest doing your homework as sites are changing to more efficient designs a couple of times a year.
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by pieintheskywhenIdie on Sat Mar 25, 2017 2:37 pm

@urchinatheart wrote:As the winds get stronger and more erratic, are there materials which could lend flexibility to a compact turbine generator, so that it could bend away from the blast like a young sapling instead of being destroyed or catching fire?  
These commercial designs do something along those lines but by hinges rather than bending.  As the wind increased the blades deflect downwind and since the hinge in at an angle it also reduces the pitch.  In case it looks familiar, those are the Proven designs under new ownership after Proven went bust.

OK, I'm not allowed to post a link, but look on Youtube for "How our turbines work" by Kingspan Environmental.

Would be interested to see photos of any that members have made or adapted.

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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Lopsum on Sat Mar 25, 2017 3:34 pm

sorry about that its just in case of spammers happens to all new members.
in the meantime allow me to post it up for you, and thanks for the info !
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Lopsum on Sat Mar 25, 2017 3:41 pm

i have a prototype design for a vawt , i do intend on making a large one . Ive never seen one quite like mine.
ive seen diy versions with this kind of spring mounting mentioned.

bah searched through my entire camera SD must be on an older one! i do have pics and even a vid of it spinning somewhere when i find will post!
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Lopsum on Sat Mar 25, 2017 6:02 pm


kind of like this if you can make it out , blue is airflow red is turn direction.
I designed it so its easy to make with recycled oil canisters or anything thats cylindrical, jus cut out 3 windows and push inward to create the inward spiral. Very Happy
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:24 am

@pieintheskywhenIdie wrote:
@urchinatheart wrote:As the winds get stronger and more erratic, are there materials which could lend flexibility to a compact turbine generator, so that it could bend away from the blast like a young sapling instead of being destroyed or catching fire?  
These commercial designs do something along those lines but by hinges rather than bending.  As the wind increased the blades deflect downwind and since the hinge in at an angle it also reduces the pitch.  In case it looks familiar, those are the Proven designs under new ownership after Proven went bust.

OK, I'm not allowed to post a link, but look on Youtube for "How our turbines work" by Kingspan Environmental.

Would be interested to see photos of any that members have made or adapted.

I doubt you will find many people making or adapting them due to their designs and performance, considerable sums of money are in vested into the turbine designs to get the last drop of usable power from them, also the efficiency in use to reduce power up speeds and increased working RPM along with lower speed, braked designs, which are designed to work in lower wind speeds at or near maximum output.

It is a rapidly emerging technology and this along with rapidly emerging technologies in capacitor storage should be something to watch over the next few years.
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Danda1985 on Fri May 12, 2017 12:38 am

What kind of financial outlay would one be looking at for a small 'starter' turbine?

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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Fri May 12, 2017 2:20 am

Cheap unit less than £100 plus the regulator.
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Lopsum on Fri May 12, 2017 2:23 am

under cutter:P
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Danda1985 on Fri May 12, 2017 10:28 am

Wow that's great. A worthy investment to offset some of the grid Electricity! And on the contrary, what type of figure to fully power a house? As an estimate of course based on house size that you specify.

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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Sat May 13, 2017 2:16 am

It depends on so many factors and nobody could realistically answer that question.
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by 1215kent on Wed Jul 19, 2017 4:58 pm

we use a 1.7kw generator it is 1.6m across it has 12 blades (more blades more efficient and less noise !) it cost about 1200 quid with all mountings
we mounted it on a old steel lamp post cut down to 16 feet (scrap yard 70 quid), i made a base plate that is hinged and bolted it to a route cage which has about 2.5 cube of concrete round it. if the wind speed goes above about 35 mph or produces more than 13.8 volts our regulated has a separate devise which measures voltage and dumps excess power to a 300 watt heating element (can fit upto 4 with relay i have used) free hot water on windy days Very Happy
look out for fork lift batteries (£250) each , our system has 4 packs at 24 volt (12 x 2 volt cells) and 630 amps (each) and 8 x 12 volt, 150 amp agm batteries (remember to connect to a 12 volt take off for dump load).
also in the system are 8 times 250 watt solar cells (amorphus)

in the future we will add 8 more solar panels and lithium iron batteries as the funds allow (dear £)
craig, off grid and proud,lol fcuk the power companies

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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:39 pm

Kent, fork lift batteries are deep cycle batteries, just one variant of them.

Nice to see your overview, but I would suggest hanging off on the lithium batteries as capacitor storage is emerging at a rapid rate and could be a better option for a permanently installed system.
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by 1215kent on Sat Jul 22, 2017 10:58 am

caps would be a much better option than toxic lithium.
i must be honest ,i have not really looked at caps recently as batteries, old style electrolyte caps that can handle high current at 12 or 24 volts are very large and expensive . future development is always open to change. do you know of a cap set up now??
cheers
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Lopsum on Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:06 am

graphene is changing things quite quickly,and it seems quite easy to DIY capacitors. this one is solar but could do wind too.
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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by Lopsum on Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:16 am

This guy shows how you could build your own super capacitors check out his channel for tonnes of info



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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by 1215kent on Sat Jul 22, 2017 1:40 pm

cheers for the vids lopsum,,looks like i got some  new research .
craig

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Re: Creating Energy-Wind

Post by assassin on Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:26 am

Yes, but unfortunately they are all test models to evaluate performance V cost currently, but several breakthroughs are coming in the not too distant future.
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