The Future of Energy – Wind Turbines
A wind turbine is a device that harnesses the kinetic energy from wind and converts the mechanical energy into electricity through a generator. Although civilizations have been using the power of wind as an energy source for thousands of years, the use of wind turbines and wind farms has become a significant source of renewable energy for the modern world since the late 1970s.
Currently, wind turbines and wind farms contribute a very small amount to the total global power generation – around 4% in 2015, but with more funding, this is projected to reach nearly 20% by 2050.
Looking Forward – Offshore Wind Energy
What are the current changes in the wind power industry?
Changes in the wind power industry are happening quickly, with more powerful wind turbine systems in the pipeline for the next couple of years. Advancement in wind technology will see turbine powers increase from 2.32 megawatts to as much as 12 megawatts per unit, bringing significantly more power generation.
The move from onshore to offshore wind farms has been gradual but looks set to increase rapidly in the coming years. Floating wind farms might be the future of wind energy and are being built further out at sea where greater wind resources are found – experts are starting to better navigate the inability of constructing permanent foundations in water that is too deep.
Which countries/areas are suited for wind energy production?
It goes without saying that areas that are very windy provide the best locations for wind turbines and wind farms, but there are plenty of other considerations when thinking about suitable locations. Areas with sustained wind, usually at high altitude, provide the best general location for a wind turbine. Making sure that the areas are unpopulated, because of the noise pollution, is important, as is building the farms away from bird populations.
What are the downsides of wind energy production?
Although the future for wind energy is bright, there are a couple of significant downsides to current wind energy production. The cost of building a wind turbine or farm, especially offshore, is incredibly expensive. The technology is also fairly immature, with advancements needed to increase efficiency and energy output as well as to eventually lower costs through innovation.
Renewable Energy and Atheneum
Atheneum provides a global network of experts, whose experience in the renewable energy sector is well placed to help our clients understand and maneuver the intricacies of this constantly evolving market. Connecting with experts will prove to be invaluable when investing in and navigating this sustainable route to energy production.