Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology

Exploring Wind Turbine Blades

Figure from experiment 5 from Investigating Wind Energy

Introduction

Blade design and engineering is one of the most complicated and important aspects of wind turbine technology. The blades of a wind turbine are the parts of the turbine that catch the wind. This causes the turbine to spin, which causes the generator to generate electricity. If the blades do not move, the wind turbine cannot generate electricity.

Blade design engineers try to design blades that efficiently capture wind energy. They also need to design blades that are durable, quiet, and affordable.

In this experiment, you will explore how blades interact with the wind and make the turbine spin. You will use data-collection equipment to measure the output of the wind turbine to determine how blade orientation affects the flow of electrons in a circuit. This information will allow you to set up your turbine correctly as you explore more advanced blade design in other experiments.

Objectives

  • Explore how the orientation of a blade affects the direction in which the wind turbine spins.
  • Measure current and potential difference (voltage) output of a wind turbine with a Vernier Energy Sensor.
  • Explore how orientation of a blade affects the sign of the current and potential difference values.

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?

Experiment 5 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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