Home Windmill Power

September 14th, 2009

Although there was lot of enthusiasm regarding using windmills to create electricity long time back, the interest died out over the time as windmills were not found to be efficient enough to generate steady electricity. However, new techniques and new generation turbines have proven that today it is possible to generate electricity efficiently using windmills, and it is again considered as a very viable alternative source of energy.

What is a WINDMILL?

Windmills, wind turbines, wind generators…  Don’t get confused. All three words are interchangeable today.

A wind generator is a device that converts wind energy to electrical energy. Wind generators have been used in form of windmills for irrigation pumping and for milling grain since the 7th century AD. In the United States, the development of the “water-pumping windmill” was the major factor in allowing the farming and ranching of vast areas otherwise devoid of readily accessible water.

Contemporary electricity-generating versions are referred to as wind turbines. The modern wind power industry began in 1979 with the serial production of wind turbines, which were small by today’s standards, with capacities of 20–30 kW each. Since then, wind turbines have increased greatly in size, while wind turbine production has expanded to many countries.

Working principles

A windmill converts wind energy into mechanical energy for mechanical work. It consists of blades, a tower, a shaft, a base, and a generator. As the blades of the wind turbine rotate by the wind, it generates mechanical energy.

The blade of a windmill is basically connected to a shaft. This shaft is connected to a generator. The movement of the blades produces the mechanical energy, which in turn is converted into electrical energy courtesy the electrical generator.

The best conditions

They work the best if you have a large area of at least one acre and the wind speed in your area is consistently at the average of 11 miles per hour.

Why you should use them…

The wind power makes use of wind energy which is absolutely free.

Windmills generate clean energy. It does not emit harmful gases, nuclear ores, or other pollutants.

Using this free energy compansates the costs of the wind turbines you installed, in other words they are extremely cost-effective.

Wind power gets you off the grid, make you self-sufficient, so you don’t depend on anything for power.

Although wind turbines can be very tall, each has a very small base and takes up only a small plot of land. The land below can still be used conveniently.

They are available at a great range of sizes.
If you are after generating WINDMILL POWER FOR YOUR HOME…

…and if you are going to be setting up a home wind generator without professional help, there are numerous helpful guides available on the Internet that will get you results.

I reviewed a few of these and the ones below have made my final list of recommendations. Go ahead and visit the individual sites too, to find out more about the details involving this smart step you will be taking for yourself and for those around you.


Earth for Energy

Earth4Energy has a very professional look, almost like a physical object. The only drawback of Earth4Energy vis a vis the Homemade Wind Generator is the lack of customer support. Some people also find it a little complicated, but I found the instructions pretty clear with great illustrated step by step guides, followed by video instructions.



Homemade Wind Generator

Even though this offer doesn’t look as professional, don’t judge an ebook by its cover. Homemade Wind Generator provides the customers with detailed information from building your wind generator to hooking it up to your house. It also delivers good customer support. Les and Jane, the couple behind the product, live off of the grid for 15 years themselves. They guide in the light of their own experiences.

You can get the Homemade Wind Generator guide as well as four other bonus manuals.




This beginner’s guide gives you a complete understanding of how wind energy is produced and how you can capture it for your own use. This guide can teach you step by step how wind energy is produced, different parts that make a wind generator, and how to buy or build your own wind turbine for $140 or less. The pictures and diagrams make it easier to follow.

You can get it for $49,97 in Green DIY Energy Guide together with solar guide and video library.


is beginner’s guide gives you a complete understanding of how wind energy is produced and how you can capture it for your own use. This guide can teach you step by step how wind energy is produced, different parts that make a wind generator, and how to buy or build your own wind turbine for $140 or less. The pictures and diagrams make it easier to follow.

You can get it for $49,97 in Green DIY Energy Guide together with solar guide and video library.

Wind Turbine Generator for Urban Locations

June 22nd, 2014

Wind Turbine Generators and Windmills for Urban Homes become more and more popular. While, till recently, Windmills where only designed for country use, the trend goes more and more twoards Wind Turbines that are designed for Urban Living.

Wind Turbine Generator Designed for Urban Living

Windmills for Home

August 21st, 2011

A lot of families are trying out renewable sources of energy, like home windmills

Pro and contra about Windmills for Homes

Due to regular power sources being either under threat, or creating environmental damage, alternate energy resources are starting to be more prevalent. This is going on not only at the top level (state or federal government) or at substantial electrical power companies, but also at the individual home level with many more individuals discovering means to create their own electric power.

Many people are substantially lowering their power bills or even living completely off-grid by means of generating their own electric power. One prospective electricity supply which can be quickly utilized, and is also completely replenishable, is wind power. In this short article we take a look at three things you really need to understand about home windmills.

1) Home windmills aren’t complicated devices.

In the early 1800s Michael Faraday discovered that electricity and magnetism, instead of being 2 absolutely distinct things, were in fact distinct types of the very same fundamental phenomenon, now called electromagnetism. What was found, very basically, was that you can use magnets to create power, or conversely you are able to use electric current to push magnets.

A windmill, or more accurately a wind turbine, is really exactly the reverse of a cooling fan. A fan makes use of electrical energy to drive an electric motor, which then spins the blades, which produce wind flow. Conversely, a wind turbine employs wind flow to turn the blades, which are connected to a generator which produces electric power.

Electrical motors and generators are honestly just two means of using the laws of electromagnetism to manipulate energy. An electric motor creates movement from electricity while a generator creates electrical energy from motion.

Without going into this overly deeply, just understand that electric motors and turbines are straightforward equipment, which have to have only a magnet and an electricity conductor to work. As long as either the magnet or conductor can move, electric current can be employed to generate movement, or motion used to generate electrical energy.

These days it is possible to purchase quite a few gadgets like flashlights that can be powered-up via turning a crank, or a hand-powered battery charger. Yet more examples of a electrical generator turning movement into electrical power.

2) Decreasing your energy costs or possibly living off-grid is entirely doable

Because wind turbines are so simple in design, many families have constructed their personal home windmills to lower their power expenditure. Although just one windmill on its own might not be enough to completely guarantee power when needed, it can be possible to mix your wind turbine together with other sources of power generation such as solar to almost ensure that you have power when you need it.

But you do not need to go fully off-grid or combine your home windmills with solar panels by any means. If you are just wanting to cut your power bill you are able to make a good start by having a home windmill. There are reports of people reducing their electric power bill by 80% with just a single home windmill.

3) Home Windmills don’t have to set you back thousands of dollars

Home windmills don’t need to cost you a great deal of money. Despite the fact that you could buy pre-packaged and fully set up wind turbines for big money it is not required.

As laid out previously the workings of a wind turbine are simple, and it is only a matter of finding the appropriate supplies and knowing how to put them together.

Using the right expertise a simple home windmill can be constructed for a couple of hundred bucks. The savings you get out of your initial windmill may then be utilized to enhance your system till you’re able to fully go off the power grid, if that is what you desire to do.

For further info on how making home windmills is simpler than you might think and how they help save you a great deal of cash, follow the links to learn more about how you can set up and use your own home wind turbine to dramatically reduce your energy expenses.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Simon_Lamberton


Although windmills are a great solution for producing Free Electricity, there are a few points you should be aware of:

  1. The so called Windturbine Syndrom
  2. The Space Problem
  3. The possibility to use windmills in urban homes

All in all windmill power is one of the cleanest powers for producing electricity. The modern windmill designs are perfectly adaptable to most of the homes.

History and Backround of windmills and windturbines

May 9th, 2011

Early Persian Wind Mill pictureThe first Persian horizontal windmill

The history of wind power shows a general evolution from the use of simple, light devices driven by aerodynamic drag forces; to heavy, material-intensive drag devices; to the increased use of light, material-efficient aerodynamic lift devices in the modern era. But it shouldn’t be imagined that aerodynamic lift (the force that makes airplanes fly) is a modern concept that was unknown to the ancients. The earliest known use of wind power, of course, is the sail boat, and this technology had an important impact on the later development of sail-type windmills. Ancient sailors understood lift and used it every day, even though they didn’t have the physics to explain how or why it worked.

The first windmills were developed to automate the tasks of grain-grinding and water-pumping and the earliest-known design is the vertical axis system developed in Persia about 500-900 A.D. The first use was apparently water pumping, but the exact method of water transport is not known because no drawings or designs — only verbal accounts — are available. The first known documented design is also of a Persian windmill, this one with vertical sails made of bundles of reeds or wood which were attached to the central vertical shaft by horizontal struts (see Figure 1a). A 19th Century American approximation of this panemone device is shown at the left (Figure 1b).

Grain grinding was the first documented wind mill application and was very straightforward. The grinding stone was affixed to the same vertical shaft. The mill machinery was commonly enclosed in a building, which also featured a wall or shield to block the incoming wind from slowing the side of the drag-type rotor that advanced toward the wind.

Vertical-axis windmills were also used in China, which is often claimed as their birthplace. While the belief that the windmill was invented in China more than 2000 years ago is widespread and may be accurate, the earliest actual documentation of a Chinese windmill was in 1219 A.D. by the Chinese statesman Yehlu Chhu-Tshai. Here also, the primary applications were apparently grain grinding and water pumping.

Vertical windmills

In a hollow-post mill the post on which the body is mounted is hollowed out, to accommodate the drive shaft. In this way it is possible to drive machinery below or outside the body while still being able to rotate the body into the wind. Hollow-post mills driving scoop wheels were used in the Netherlands to drain wetlands from the 14th century onwards.

The Tower mill

By the end of the thirteenth century the masonry tower mill, on which only the cap is rotated rather than the whole body of the mill, had been introduced. The spread of tower mills came with a growing economy that called for larger and more stable sources of power though they were more expensive to build. In contrast to the post mill, only the cap of the tower mill needs to be turned into the wind, so the main structure can be made much taller, allowing the sails to be made longer, which enables them to provide useful work even in low winds. The cap can be turned into the wind either by winches or gearing inside the cap or from a winch on the tail pole outside the mill. A method of keeping the cap and sails into the wind automatically is by using a fantail, a small windmill mounted at right angles to the sails, at the rear of the windmill. These are also fitted to tail poles of post mills and are common in Great Britain and English-speaking countries of the former British Empire, Denmark and Germany but rare in other places. Tower mills with a fixed cap are found around the Mediterranean Sea. They are built with the sails facing the prevailing wind direction.

The better Smock mill

The smock mill is a later development of the tower mill where the tower is replaced by a wooden framework, called the smock. The smock is commonly of octagonal plan, though examples with more, or fewer, sides exist. The smock is thatched, boarded or covered by other materials like slate, sheet metal or tar paper. The lighter construction in comparison to tower mills make smock mills practical as drainage mills as these often had to be built in areas with unstable subsoil. Having originated as a drainage mill, smock mills are also used for a variety of purposes. When used in a built-up area it is often placed on a masonry base to raise it above the surrounding buildings.

Windmill Blades and Sails

Common sails consist of a lattice framework on which a sailcloth is spread. The miller can adjust the amount of cloth spread according to the amount of wind available and power needed. In medieval mills the sailcloth was wound in and out of a ladder type arrangement of sails. Post-medieval mill sails had a lattice framework over which the sailcloth was spread, while in colder climates the cloth was replaced by wooden slats, which were easier to handle in freezing conditions.[21] The jib sail is commonly found in Mediterranean countries, and consists of a simple triangle of cloth wound round a spar. In all cases the mill needs to be stopped to adjust the sails. Inventions in Great Britain in the late 18th and 19th century led to sails that automatically adjust to the wind speed without the need for the miller to intervene, culminating in Patent sails invented by William Cubitt in 1813. In these sails the cloth is replaced by a mechanism of connected shutters. In France, Berton invented a system consisting of longitudinal wooden slats connected by a mechanism that lets the miller open them while the mill is turning. In the 20th century increased knowledge of aerodynamics from the development of the airplane led to further improvements in efficiency by German engineer Bilau and several Dutch millwrights. The majority of windmills have four sails. Multi-sailed mills, with five, six or eight sails, were built in Great Britain (especially in and around the counties of Lincolnshire and Yorkshire), Germany and less commonly elsewhere. Earlier multi-sailed mills are found in Spain, Portugal, Greece, parts of Romania, Bulgaria and Russia [22] A mill with an even number of sails has the advantage of being able to run with a damaged sail and the one opposite removed without resulting in an unbalanced mill.

Gears inside a windmill convey power from the rotary motion of the sails to a mechanical device. The sails are carried on the horizontal windshaft. Windshafts can be wholly made of wood, or wood with a cast iron poll end (where the sails are mounted) or entirely of cast iron. The brake wheel is fitted onto the windshaft between the front and rear bearing. It has the brake around the outside of the rim and teeth in the side of the rim which drive the horizontal gearwheel called wallower on the top end of the vertical upright shaft. In grist mills the great spur wheel, lower down the upright shaft, drives one or more stone nuts on the shafts driving each millstone. Post mills sometimes have a head and/or tail wheel driving the stone nuts directly, instead of the spur gear arrangement. Additional gear wheels drive a sack hoist or other machinery. The machinery differs if the windmill is used for other applications than milling grain. A drainage mill uses another set of gear wheels on the bottom end of the upright shaft to drive a scoop wheel or Archimedes’ screw. Sawmills use a crankshaft with to provide a reciprocating motion to the saws. Windmills have been used to power many other industrial processes, including papermills, threshing mills, and for example to process oil seeds, wool, paints and stone products [3]
The total number of wind powered mills in Europe is estimated to have been around 200,000 at its peak, compared to some 500,000 waterwheels.[21] With the coming of the industrial revolution, the importance of wind (and water) as primary industrial energy source declined and was eventually replaced by steam and internal combustion engines, although windmills continued to be built in large numbers until late in the nineteenth 19th Century. More recently windmills have been preserved for their historic value, in some cases as static exhibits when the antique machinery is too fragile to put in motion, and in other cases as fully working mills. There are around 50 working mills in operation in Britain as of 2009.[23]

Of the 10,000 windmills in use in the Netherlands around 1850,[24] about 1000 are still standing. Most of these are being run by volunteers though there are some grist mills still operating commercially. Many of the drainage mills have been appointed as backup to the modern pumping stations. The Zaan district has been said to have been the first industrialized region of the world with around 600 operating wind powered industries by the end of the 18th century.[24] Economic fluctuations and the industrial revolution had a much greater impact on these industries than on grain and drainage mills so only very few are left.
A Windpump

Windpumps are used extensively on farms and ranches in the central plains and South West of the United States and in Southern Africa and Australia. These mills feature a large number of blades so that they turn slowly with considerable torque in low winds and be self regulating in high winds. A tower-top gearbox and crankshaft convert the rotary motion into reciprocating strokes carried downward through a rod to the pump cylinder below. The farm wind pump was invented by Daniel Halladay in 1854.[25][26] Eventually steel blades and steel towers replaced wooden construction, and at their peak in 1930, an estimated 600,000 units were in use.[27] The multi-bladed wind turbine atop a lattice tower made of wood or steel hence became, for many years, a fixture of the landscape throughout rural America. Firms such as Star, Eclipse, Fairbanks-Morse and Aermotor became famed suppliers in North and South America.
Wind Turbines and Windmillpower
A windmill used to generate electricity is commonly called a wind turbine. The first windmills for electricity production were built by the end of the 19th century by Prof James Blyth in Scotland (1887),[28][29] Charles F. Brush in Cleveland, Ohio (1887–1888)[30][31][32] and Poul la Cour in Denmark (1890s). La Cour’s mill from 1896 later became the local powerplant of the village Askov. By 1908 there were 72 wind-driven electric generators in Denmark from 5 kW to 25 kW. By the 1930s windmills were widely used to generate electricity on farms in the United States where distribution systems had not yet been installed, built by companies like Jacobs Wind, Wincharger, Miller Airlite, Universal Aeroelectric, Paris-Dunn, Airline and Winpower and by the Dunlite Corporation for similar locations in Australia.

Rønland Windpark in Denmark

Forerunners of modern horizontal-axis utility-scale wind generators were the WIME-3D in service in Balaklava USSR from 1931 until 1942, a 100 kW generator on a 30 m (100 ft) tower,[33] the Smith-Putnam wind turbine built in 1941 on the mountain known as Grandpa’s Knob in Castleton, Vermont, USA of 1.25 MW and the NASA wind turbines developed from 1974 through the mid 1980′s. The development of these 13 experimental wind turbines pioneered many of the wind turbine design technologies in use today, including: steel tube towers, variable-speed generators, composite blade materials, partial-span pitch control, as well as aerodynamic, structural, and acoustic engineering design capabilities. The modern wind power industry began in 1979 with the serial production of wind turbines by Danish manufacturers Kuriant, Vestas, Nordtank, and Bonus. These early turbines were small by today’s standards, with capacities of 20–30 kW each. Since then, they have increased greatly in size, with the Enercon E-126 capable of delivering up to 7 MW, while wind turbine production has expanded to many countries.

As the 21st century began, rising concerns over energy security, global warming, and eventual fossil fuel depletion led to an expansion of interest in all available forms of renewable energy. Worldwide there are now many thousands of wind turbines operating, with a total nameplate capacity of 194,400 MW. Europe accounted for 48% of the total in 2009.


Myth or Real: Wind Turbine Syndrome

July 6th, 2010

The current debate on whether wind turbines have adverse effects on human health is being heated up day by day with actors from all around the world engaging in the discussion. The cons of wind turbines argue that industry driven wind “farms” generate a constant low frequency noise that is harmful to the people with risk factors living in close proximity. The pro group, on the other hand, asserts that there is no credible evidence to rectify the link.


Not many people, other than oil patrons I guess, would today deny the vitality of renewable energy. The awareness of Global Climate Change has been higher than ever. I sometimes even think that world has gone through a green craze. More and more people build up their own renewable energy production systems, in terms of solar panels and small wind turbines to  generate their own electricity and get off the grid. Corporate companies are either devoting their CSR budgets to green-related causes or their communicators to green washing efforts. What so ever, today green sells.

Cons: Its like a a jet engine that doesn’t go away and which you can’t get used to

Even though most people don’t question the concept of renewable energy, there is strong oppositions against certain practices. As Dr.Nina Pierpont put down in her article The Wind Turbine Syndrome back in 2006,  people living in close proximity to industrial wind farms display some common symptoms, such as:

1) Sleep problems: noise or physical sensations of pulsation or pressure make it hard to go to sleep and cause frequent awakening.
2) Headaches which are increased in frequency or severity.
3) Dizziness, unsteadiness, and nausea.
4) Exhaustion, anxiety, anger, irritability, and depression.
5) Problems with concentration and learning.
6) Tinnitus (ringing in the ears).

According to Pierpont, chronic sleep disturbance is the most common symptom; and exhaustion, mood problems, and problems with concentration and learning are natural outcomes of poor sleep. Due to the differences among people in susceptibility, not everyone near turbines has these symptoms but it is triggered with the presence of risk factors such as age and preexisting migraine disorder.

Pros: Noise perception is linked with attitude towards wind turbines

World Health Organization says there is “no reliable evidence that sounds below the hearing threshold produce physiological or psychological effects,” cites the report of an independent study by Australia’s National Health & Medical Research Council. In other words, even though people report annoyance stemmed from the infrasound, there has been found no direct causal link to health problems.

Rather, the pro camp  attribute the complaints to the negative perception of wind energy. Accoring to a recently conducted study, the reported annoyance is strongly associated with a negative attitude to the visual impact of wind turbines on the landscape. Further more, it is known that the noise produced by ten wind turbines at a distance of 350 m is 35 to 45 decibels, while the report compares, noise in a busy office is 60 dBA and car traveling at 64 km/h at a distance of 100 m is 55 dBA.

Who is right?

The arguments of both sides are compelling. If people report their disturbance, it is ought to be taken into consideration. On the other hand, since energy industry is the scene for many conflicting interests, it wouldn’t be strange to expect misinformation and manipulation from all parties of the debate.

Moreover, and more importantly, as wind power has been gaining prominence vis a vis other forms of energy production, further rigorous research should be encouraged.


Best Locations to generate windmill power

December 27th, 2009

Making use of windmill power for your house or your farm is a good idea, for it pays for the investments in the long run and it is friendly to the environment. However, efficiency of windmill power heavily depends on the location.


Landscapes and seasonal changes play an important role in the speed and patterns of the wind. In Tehachapi, California, for instance, the wind blows stronger in the period between April and October in comparison to the wind speed of the same region in winter. Air, which is heated in Mojave Desert  rises and cooler air from the Pacific Ocean at great speeds surpasses the Tehachapi Mountain.

The rule of thumb is the area should be flat and over one acre and there should be a consistent wind at a certain speed throughout the year with a minimum likelihood of sudden powerful bursts.

The wind blows faster at higher altitudes because of the reduced influence of drag. Therefore you can chose a place such as  a flat surface where the wind can rise from lower gaps, or you can build a longer turbine. Doubling the altitude of a turbine, then, increases the expected wind speeds by 10% and the expected power by 34%.


If you have lucky to have these conditions in your farm or yard, you can generate windmill power for yourself.


Vermont Welcome Center is OFF THE GRID

October 6th, 2009


While the opponents question the viability of power derived from private installations, Vermont Department of Public Service not only commissioned a study called “Estimating the Hypothetical Wind Power Potential on Public Lands in Vermont” in order to define baseline data on the wind energy potential on public land, back in 2003, but also demostrated the use in the Welcome Center in Alburgh which is totally powered by a wind turbine.

It is another manifestation that, it is now possible to live off the grid.


Through this demostration Vermont Department of Public Service goes beyond adding value to public lands and proves that wind power can be effectively used for single homes to live off the grid.

For the study: http://www.vermontwindpolicy.org/windpwr.pdf

A Brief Introduction to Windmill Design

September 21st, 2009

What constitutes a windmill? What are the main components?

small wind turbines

The major components of a typical windmill are as follows:

The blades: The number changes from four to 20. There are some even bigger wind mills that have more blades.

The tower: The blades should be held high so that the wind can run them.

The shaft: The shaft joins the blades with the tower.

The generator: The generator is what convertes mechanical energy to electricity and stores power for future use.

The base: The base of the windmill connects it to the earth.

As you can see in the image below, some windmills necessitate more parts. It depends on the needs and the use.


The kinetic energy of moving air initiates the force that turns a windmill’s blades. It spins a drive shaft that in turn spins the turbine of a generator to make electricity. A gear box located along the drive shaft increases speed and optimize power generation. Longer rotor blades mean a larger “rotor swept area,” the total area covered by spinning blades, increasing the energy that can be captured and generating more electricity.

Many factors affect the design of a windmill:

Wind speed: You can measure the wind speed at site via an anemometer. Wind speed is the major determinant factor on the kind of windmill that is the best for your site.

Wind direction: For designing a windmill, it is also important to know the direction from which the wind flows most of the time.

Obstructions on the site: The less are the obstructions, the better the site is to generate windmill power.

Wind turbulence: The patter of wind movement determines the windmill design.

The height at which the wind is significantly active: The height of the tower is dependent on the distance of wind activity from the ground level.

Due to these variations, windmill designs require particularities. Number and shape of blades, the height of the tower or other features may change according to the necesities of the environment.e4e