The growth in the sophistication and utility of electronic equipment has resulted in a wide range of applications where ‘off grid’ power is required.
Traditionally small wind turbines were used to provide power for holiday caravans and electric fences for farmers. Today micro wind turbines are used to provide power for a host of off grid applications including remote telemetry on oil and gas platforms, mobile phone booster stations, security and surveillance cameras, off grid homes, traffic signals and public art to name but a few.
Very often a hybrid system will be specified where wind turbines and photovoltaic panels are used together in the installation. These technologies complement each other in that PV works well during the long light days of summer, whereas the wind turbine is at its most productive in the windy winter months.
The electricity produced by the wind turbines and PV is stored in batteries and can be used directly as low voltage DC to power lighting and appliances, or 240V AC can be produced by use of an inverter.
With all wind systems, siting the turbine in a place with a good wind resource is vital. Investigate the wind potential of your site as the most critical part of the planning process.