Wind Turbines for the Home

Generating electricity from kinetic energy via the wind could well be the next frontier for home electricity generation The PV cells on the garage roof have been performing very well the house is using about 6 more kWh per day than we produce so the next thing we want to look at is wind power

The house is about 800m off the coast so coastal winds will help but is there enough wind to drive a turbine We have measured the wind speed here, it averages 75mps which means we are a viable site for the installation of a real wind turbine The small turbine we are looking at is from Swan Energy, they have jointly developed it and it's the first of its kind to be released here Until now the inverters that allow us to put power back into the grid have been a challenge for turbine manufacturers

Before we install the wind turbine we need approval from local authorities and our energy provider In the past one of the problems with wind turbines in residential areas is noise Well I'm going to check out an installation and find out just how much noise they actually make Well here we are and there is the first installation of the Zephyr and it's turning very well the wind is quite strong here but it's not making any noise so whatever the wind noise problems are with the larger turbines this one, doesn't have them They seem to have corrected or fixed it with the design it's virtually silent

The turbine is compact and relatively light but it has the potential to generate more electricity than the PV cells on our roof It is precision manufactured from ultra light material and is perfectly balanced Swan' Energy's engineers have designed a mast and mounting system that is fixed to the fixed to the brick section to the front of the house The fixings are set deep into the wall providing solid support and prevent any movement or vibrations in the strongest winds The mast will position the turbine 3m above the roof to take advantage of the wind here

The Zephyr is the first of this kind of turbine in Australia Swan Energy expect sales to ramp up over the next 12 months as energy conscious home owners and government organisations look for new solutions in renewable energy Like photovoltaic cells, electricity generated by the Zephyr is passed through an inverter and then directly into the grid Even in light winds the blades have the ability to self start to overcome start-up inertia and optimise energy production Because the Zephyr is so compact and quiet it's suitable for any residential area

We believe it will soon become a common sight throughout the suburbs

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