Independent Wind Energy Systems
Also called stand alone or grid-independent systems, a stand alone wind energy system (ideally) would be one wind turbine found at a site where the wind is sufficient to provide energy year round. This system would have a battery for backup (for when wind inevitably 'dies down'), though the wind may be strong enough and the system robust enough. Other than the addition of the battery, the system is closed.
Such an energy system would provide more energy than needed, on a consistent basis. Say, for example, that your energy needs are relatively small: say, kW per day, on average. If you have wind energy system that can produce a megawatt per day, then you are 'in the clear.' Of course, such ideal conditions occur rarely in the real world.
Consistent, ideal wind energy conditions occur very rarely (if at all) in the real world.
What is far more likely is a system that produces energy erratically, and that this energy is stored in batteries or a battery bank. Such a system is highly feasible, and we have advice on:
- Deciding whether wind is right for you
- Wind energy System components
- Choosing a supplier
- Dealing with bylaws and regulations
You can also read a case study of an independent wind energy system.
An alternative is a hybrid system. This combines wind energy with a solar panel or other energy source (including a gas or diesel generator, a solar panel and/or other source, such as bio-fuel or micro hydro) to provide consistent power.
Small stand alone wind energy systems
If you have any need for power in a remote area, a small stand alone wind energy system is likely a very practical, economical choice. With the addition of a battery to supplement your energy current, these can be used to provide power in many cases, such as:
- a remote pumping or monitoring station.
- a mobile home or RV
- a mobile camp
For such a stand alone wind energy system, you want to read a bit more about some system components: