Though many would have thought that having installed home wind turbines, electricity would not be a problem anymore, it seems things do not look that encouraging.
A British study conducted by consultant engineers from Encraft said that micro turbines can only generate enough power for 30% of the houses needs. On average turbines can only output 214 watts hour per day and in some cases they can even fail to provide enough energy to run the turbine’s electronics. In some case turbines generate only 5% of the houses energy consumption lighting only four low energy light bulbs.
Engineers found out that the wind turbines generate more energy if put on high buildings or open spaces. Matthew Rhodes, Encraft’s managing director said that if the wind turbines are put in the right spot they can achieve the desired results. The poor result can be seen in area were there are obstructions to wind, like areas with many houses around and trees.
Encraft Ltd inspected 4 rural turbines, 10 suburban and 12 urban sites for a year. Alex Murley of the British Wind Energy Association said that small and micro wind turbines can supply up to 10% of the house needs.
Alex Murley also added: “Clearly micro-wind turbines do not work everywhere, but the UK is the windiest country in Europe, and there are literally millions of excellent sites waiting for sensible application of this successful technology”
Update 01.20.08: The Encraft Warwick Wind Trial is independent research carried out by Encraft Ltd (http://www.encraft.co.uk) , a firm of consulting engineers specialising in low-carbon building solutions. None of the work in the Trial was carried out by British Wind Energy Association or the government.
Neither did these bodies fund the research. To maintain the independence of the Trial it was funded by Pilkington Energy Efficiency Trust and BRE Trust.
The full report of the results of the Encraft Warwick Wind Trials can be downloaded from http://www.warwickwindtrials.org.uk/index.html