Guided Tour, FWD

Where does Wind Energy come From?

All renewable energy (except tidal and geothermal power), and even the energy in fossil fuels, ultimately comes from the sun. The sun radiates 100,000,000,000,000 kilowatt hours of energy to the earth per hour. In other words, the earth receives 10 to the 18th power of watts of power.
About 1 to 2 per cent of the energy coming from the sun is converted into wind energy. That is about 50 to 100 times more than the energy converted into biomass by all plants on earth.

Temperature Differences Drive Air Circulation
Sea Temperature World MapThe regions around equator, at 0° latitude are heated more by the sun than the rest of the globe. These hot areas are indicated in the warm colours, red, orange and yellow in this infrared picture of sea surface temperatures (taken from a NASA satellite, NOAA-7 in July 1984).
Hot air is lighter than cold air and will rise into the sky until it reaches approximately 10 km (6 miles) altitude and will spread to the North and the South. If the globe did not rotate, the air would simply arrive at the North Pole and the South Pole, sink down, and return to the equator.



Guided Tour, FWD

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© Copyright 2000 Soren Krohn. All rights reserved.
Updated 6 August 2000