Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology

Introduction to Wind Turbines

Figure from experiment 1 from Investigating Wind Energy


For thousands of years, people have been using wind energy to do work—from traveling around the world on sailboats to milling grain using windmills. Today, wind is becoming more common as a renewable energy source through the use of wind turbines.

Wind turbines have three basic parts–a tower, blades, and a generator. These parts work together to convert energy from the wind into electrical energy. When the wind blows, it pushes against the blades, causing them to spin. As the blades spin, they cause the generator to turn. The turning of the generator generates electricity, which can be used to light a light bulb or play music on your stereo.


  • Explore how wind turbines can be used to generate electricity.
  • Use electricity generated by a wind turbine to light an LED.
  • Build and understand basic circuits.
  • Verify that energy is transferred by electric currents.

Sensors and Equipment

This experiment features the following Vernier sensors and equipment.

Additional Requirements

You may also need an interface and software for data collection. What do I need for data collection?

Investigating Wind Energy

See other experiments from the lab book.

1Introduction to Wind Turbines
2Exploring Wind Energy
3Introduction to the Vernier Energy Sensor
4Wind Turbine Output: The Effect of Load
5Exploring Wind Turbine Blades
6Blade Design: Pitch
7Blade Design: Area
8Blade Design: Quantity
9Blade Design: Mass
10Blade Design: Material
11Project: Power Up!

Experiment 1 from Investigating Wind Energy Lab Book

<i>Investigating Wind Energy</i> book cover

Included in the Lab Book

Vernier lab books include word-processing files of the student instructions, essential teacher information, suggested answers, sample data and graphs, and more.

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