P12401: Wind Energy Collection to Energy Bank
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Turbine Selection

Table of Contents

Wind Turbine Selection

http://www.amazon.com/Nature-Power-70400-Turbine-Gloss/dp/B0050B0Y9G

NPower 400W Turbine

NPower 400W Turbine

We have chosen the Nature Power 400 Watt Turbine (http://www.naturepowerproducts.com/product-details.php?id=83) for our system. It includes a turbine along with a max power point tracking charge controller. This additional unit will protect our battery from overcharging or over-discharging as well as preserving the turbine. In high wind speeds, it will shut down the turbine by the means of short circuiting. A stop switch that is included will also be put within the system for much easier manual shut down.

Owner's Manual

Nature Power Turbine Owner's Manual

Feasibility Analysis

Power output from the turbine can be seen in the chart below. The blue chart is the given power curve for a 12V nominal system from Nature Power. It displays a wattage output from the turbine at various wind speeds.

Nature Power Turbine Power Output

Nature Power Turbine Power Output

A scatter plot was created to simulate the Nature Power 12V curve so a best fit line could be produced. Then average wind speeds could be put into this best fit equation to find average power output.

Estimated Data Points from Nature Power's Given Curve

Estimated Data Points from Nature Power's Given Curve

Plotted Estimated Data Points with Best Fit Line

Plotted Estimated Data Points with Best Fit Line

Inputting Various Wind Speeds to the Best Fit Equation to see average Power Output

Inputting Various Wind Speeds to the Best Fit Equation to see average Power Output

From previous calculations in Initial Design Documentation and Wind Analysis, we need an average of 20.64 Watts in an average annual wind speed of 2.59 m/s. As you can see in the table directly above, even with the low turbine stand height of 3m, the system will be able to produce more power (~24-25 Watts) than the 20.64 Watts needed. Thus deeming this turbine as sufficient. One may also notice that the Watts generated versus the Watts needed are very close to each other. This leads to the conclusion that the Nature Power wind turbine chosen is correctly scaled to the overall integrated system of teams P12401 and P12402.

Explanation

An initial choice of ours was to use the Southwest Windpower Air-X wind turbine. It is the #1 selling small-scale turbine available, but it is rather costly with our budget constraint. A cheaper substitute, the Nature Power turbine, was found.

Another noteworthy topic is the height of the tower that we will install the turbine on. 3m (~10 feet) is reasonable for a portable system. Unfortunately, wind speeds are pretty low and turbulent at this height. Ideally, we would install it in an open field or on a high platform to remove as much turbulence as possible. A roof of an RIT building is being investigated.

Finally, we opted to buy a turbine instead of source parts and build our own. After seeing the P11401 team's output, we were worried we could not deliver enough power for LVE battery packs to be charged. Since that is one of our customer needs, to supply power for future RIT projects, we wanted to make sure we had sufficient power production. From the calculations within this section, the Nature Power 400W turbine seems to be very well scaled to the overall system.


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