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Title: Which type of blade shape would produce the greatest amount of energy for a wind turbine? Nancy Pham Physics 3rd period
Background Research • In times like these, when society is solely dependent on depleting non-renewable resources, scientists must turn to a different way to produce energy with easier renewable resources. Today, there are many things that may replace energy derived from non renewable resources. Today, there are biofuel, geothermal energy, hydroelectricity, solar energy, tidal power, wave power, and wind power. Biofuel is fuel that is made from biomass, rather than non renewable resources such as fossil fuels. Standing as the opponent against gasoline, biodiesel is produced from various things such as animal fat or vegetable oils.
Background Research cont. • Bioethanol is also another component dealing with biofuel. Bioethanol is produced with the fermenting of sugars found in plants. Geothermal energy is when heat in the form of steam is collected and converted into energy. Hydroelectricity, tidal power, and wave power all deal with water and the power of the currents that help produce energy. Another form is solar energy. This is when the sun’s rays are captured and turned into energy. The last is wind power. This is when wind and the force it produces are harnessed and is converted into energy. Wind power shall be the main focus of the research.
Background Research cont. • Dating when humans first used wind for their needs is more difficult than imagined. People have used it ever since they discovered that with sails, wind can take ships anywhere. This can be dated back to the Egyptians. From then on, there are wind powered machines whose purpose was to pump water and irrigate. A major invention was the invention of the windmill. The Chinese were said to be responsible for that momentous creation. The wind mills were mainly used for farming purposes in the past. Starting in the nineteenth century, wind mills were used for electricity. The first person to use wind power for electricity was Jame Blyth of Scotland, 1887. From then on, advancements with wind mills happened. Wind mills turned into wind turbines with blades of many shapes as to see which is more effective.
Background Research cont. • Due to the decreasing supply of fossil fuels, wind power as an alternative power source. This is why the use of wind turbine generators is increasing. “The reason for focusing on wind as an alternative energy is because this form of energy can be founded in most areas around the country, and even the world (Cross, 289)”. Wind speeds are categorized on a scale of one to seven. However, wind speeds considered as three and up, are able to be converted into energy.
Introduction • The experiment assesses the effect of different blade shapes on the amount of electricity measured, in voltages, that can be produced. The purpose of this experiment is to discover/test a blade shape that might help produce electricity easier and more efficient. This experiment is important because it may improve the use of wind power generators as an alternative to the burning of depleting fossil fuels.
Materials • 2 Clear plastic water bottle, 1.5L size • Voltage meter • Electrical tape • Washers • Magnets • Kabob skewer • Cardboard • Magnetic wire • Candle • Lighter • Hair blowdryer • Safety goggles • Heat resistance gloves
Procedures • Cut the cardboard to form a box. The measurements will be 4x4, 1½ x 1½, 4x4, 1½ x 1½ , and 4x4. • Poke a hole through three sides of the box. Be sure to center the hole. • With the skewer or a pen, swirl it around to widen the hole. This is so the skewer can turn easily. • Fold the cardboard to form a box. • Put the skewer through the holes. • Now to assemble the skewer. Attach two magnets to the skewer to where it ‘sandwiches’ the skewer and this is in the middle of the box. • Add washers to the middle of the magnets to support the magnets. • Now take the magnetic wire and tape it to a spot on the box. • Now wrap the wire around the box about 200 complete turns of wire. • Now make the blades by measuring it on the plastic bottles and cutting them out. • To make the slightly curved blade, light a candle and use the heat from the candle to gradually melt the plastic a little bit to twist it. • Now attach the blade to the skewer. • Attach the voltage meter to the magnetic wire. • Observe and record the amount of voltages produced.
Data Analysis The date provided on the graph above shows that the most voltages produced from the triangular blade design. The flat blade design produced the least voltages. In this experiment, the independent variable is the various types of blade designs: the flat blade, the slightly curved blade, and the triangular blade. The dependent variable is the amount of voltages produced from each blade when wind was blown at it. The central tendency of the graph is the mean or average of the three trials.
Conclusion • The purpose of this experiment was to determine if different types of blade designs would affect the amount of electricity produced in voltages. The design that proved to be the most effective in producing voltages was the triangular blade. The average or mean was used for each trial as a measurement of central tendency. The flat blade received an average of 6.3. The slightly curved blade received an average of 6.7. The triangular blade received an average of 9.7. The data supported the hypothesis in that the triangular blade produced the most voltages. This blade was the one that worked the best due to its shape and light weight. A human error could have occurred if the student made an incorrect measurement. For another experiment, the student can test how this were to apply to water.
Works Cited • Cross, Mike. Wind Power. New York City, NY: Glouchester Press, 1985. • Gipe, Paul. Wind Energy Basics. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green Company, 1999. • <http://www.awea.org/faq/rsdntq9.html><http://www.otherpower.com/otherpower_wind.shtml> • <http://www.windea.org/home/images/stones/worldwindenerbyreport200...s.pdf>