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gtojohn 03-05-15 07:54 AM

Recommendations for lowest start up speed turbine
It seems one of the biggest hurdles with wind power is low speed generation.
Out of curiosity whats the lowest start up speed turbine out there? Applied it seems more important for power made in the 10 mph and under wind range regardless how paltry.

MN Renovator 03-05-15 08:24 AM

You can make it spin up easily with little wind but that doesn't mean you'll make much power because of it. It's a figure of physics. There are some places where wind power isn't a great idea. Solar, with the absence of shade works much more effectively in those places. I'd be better off installing solar in Anchorage, Alaska versus installing a 100 foot high wind turbine in my county.

Mikesolar 03-25-15 05:55 AM

The Hugh Piggot brake drum turbine was supposed to start up in around 4-5mph and had a big enough swept area to actually produce something. You had to have a good high wind cutout scheme for it tho.

gasstingy 03-26-15 07:37 AM

In my area, according to the national wind resource map, it would be beyond rational to put up a wind turbine.

And yet, in the back of my mind I want one for those days when the weather is stormy and my solar array is barely more than a lawn ornament. What can I say, I'm not always rational either.....:p

stevehull 03-26-15 10:01 AM

Low speed operation can be had, but then high speed (high wind) is compromised. Remember that wind energy (wind power) is a function of the wind speed squared.

Variable pitch blades can adjust to different wind speeds, but then they introduce a lot of mechanical issues. I do recall someone using an old surplus blade hub from a turboprop aircraft engine and using it as a variable blade hub wind turbine.

Not a lot of geographical areas are favorable for wind and FAR more are better for solar PV. Just compare the maps. There are a few areas that overlap, but not many.

And solar PV can be put up by DIYers. Putting up a several hundred lb wind turbine on a 100+ foot tower is completely another issue!


stevehull 03-26-15 10:03 AM

Just reread the starting thread. Austin, TX has some incredibly good incentives for solar PV. This would be a very good starting point.


ideamaster 04-07-15 10:00 AM

Slow Wind Speed References
i did a lot of research into one of these for florida. They are great "slow startup". However they still need a good bit of wind before any real power gets going. At least, if I remember correctly, i determined that florida doesn't have enough wind to power anything more than a cheap LED light. My guess was you really need about 9mph, and I think my area's average was something like 7. So i wasn't really interested in hurricane only power.

power curve (with mph and m/s)
google: Honeywell-Wind-Turbine-System.pdf

windchart m/s
google: us_windmap_80meters.pdf

(sorry my post count is too low to post URLs)

WisJim 04-07-15 10:53 AM

If you figure how much energy is available at low wind speeds you will realize you can generate so little that it isn't worthwhile. If you make a large enough diameter rotor to start at very low speeds it will be difficult to keep it all together at higher wind speeds. PVs are a better choice if you don't have a 10 to 12 mph annual average wind speed AND a good clear spot for a tower at least 100 feet tall. Anything less is a toy or an experiment.

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