Thursday, July 18, 2019
Wind Power Essay -- Energy Physics Essays
Wind Power In the society we live in today, many people have the misconception that there is a never-ending supply of energy available for our wasteful use. However, people must realize that the fossil fuels that we have come to depend on for our energy are quickly being depleted. There are several renewable energy resources, most of which come from the sun, that are available for our use. One of these abundant energy resources is the wind. By taking advantage of the wind, and harnessing its power to supply useful energy, people can ensure that they will have energy for as long as the sun continues to heat the earth. The wind is a direct product of the sun. The earth receives 1.74 x 10^17 Watts of power (per hour) from the sun (Tour 1). The sun causes differential heating of earthÃ¢â¬â¢s surface and atmosphere, inducing vertical and horizontal air currents that are affected by the rotation of the earth and the contours of the land (Ristinen 133). As the land is heated, the warm air near the surface rises into the cooler atmosphere, causing a pressure gradient between the surface and the upper atmosphere. The lower pressure near the surface causes an inward current of air (wind) from the higher-pressure surroundings. A great example of this is the Land Sea Breeze Cycle, which we feel when we step on the beach (Tour 1). As the warmer air rises into the atmosphere, the cooler air over the ocean rushes onto the shore, and this is the refreshing sea breeze we have come to expect whenever we step on the beach. About one to two percent of the energy that the earth receives from the sun is converted to wind energy (Tour 1). The amount of energy that the wind transfers to the rotors of a wind turbine depends on the dens... ... long as the sun continues to heat the earth. It causes no pollution and has little effect on the environment. Therefore, due to the availability and advantages of wind power, the decreasing cost of wind power, and the growing interest in renewable energy resources, one can be assured that wind power will soon become a feasible energy source in the United States, as well as throughout the world. Works Cited Ristinen, Robert A., Jack J. Kraushaar.. Energy and the Environment. New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 1999. Urone, Paul P.. College Physics: Second Edition. California: Brooks/Cole, 2001. Guided Tour on Wind Energy. 16 Oct. 2002 . The National Wind Technology Center (NWTC). 16 Oct. 2002 . Wind Energy. 16 Oct. 2002 .