a complex of technical apparatus for the transformation of the kinetic energy of a wind current into some other form of energy. A wind-power installation consists of a wind-power assembly (a wind engine connected to one or several operating machines), accumulating or storing apparatus, and in a number of cases, a standby nonwind engine and a system for automatic control and regulation of the modes of operation.
Either a reservoir that is filled with water or gangs of storage batteries are used as storage devices. Inertia storage units are used for short-term energy reserves and for balancing the input in case of small changes in wind speed. The standby engines (usually internal-combustion engines) are used in calm periods and when, owing to a decrease in speed, the force with which the wind engine is being turned becomes less than the rated power or insufficient to feed electrical energy to the entire connected load. Automatic control and regulatory systems serve to turn the wind engine on and off (depending on wind conditions and on the load, the level to which the reservoir is filled with water, or the charge of the batteries), to monitor the operation of the main elements of the wind-power installation, to coordinate the conditions of joint or parallel operation of wind and thermal engines, and so on.
Wind-power installations are distinguished according to their specialized purpose (for pumping or water-raising, electrical charging, milling, distillation, and so on) and integrated application (wind-powered and wind-electrical). In wind-power plants the mechanical transmission of the wind engine drives the operating machines, producing electricity; in wind-electrical installations, the electrical energy generated is transmitted to the electric motor of the operating machine. Depending on the type and characteristics of the wind engines and operating machines, wind-power installations can be low-speed, medium-speed, or high-speed. The installed capacity (rated power) of a wind-power installation depends mainly on the diameter of the propeller and the rated wind speed. Wind-power installations with capacities from 100 watts to 1,000 kilowatts have been built. The power and speed of rotation of the propeller of wind-power installations, unlike those of other power-engineering installations, vary constantly within broad limits.
REFERENCESFateev, E. M. Vetrodvigateli i vetroustanovki, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1957.
Fateev, E. M. Vetrosilovye ustanovki. Moscow, 1959. Shefter, la. I., and I. V. Rozhdest ven skii. Vetronasosnye i vetro-elektricheskie agregaty. Moscow, 1967.
IA. I. SHEFTER