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What You Can Do with Your Turbine

Subject:

Science  

Grades:

6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12  

Title – Basic PVC Wind Turbine – Uses
By – Chad Johnson
Primary Subject – Science
Grade Level – 6-12

Constructing Basic PVC Wind Turbine Unit


What Can You Do with Your Turbine?

  • Factors that Affect Power Output
    • Wind speed is an easy variable to change. Take your turbine and place it in front of a fan at three different distances. How does the power output change? Why does it change? Make a graph and discuss. Think about this in relation to the power in the wind equation:
      Power (Watts) = Voltage (V) X Current (C) .

      To more accurately measure the wind speed of your fan get a wind meter from KidWind (www.kidwind.org) or search some ideas on the web to build your own.

    • Generators – See note in parts section above.
    • Blade Design experiments are an entertaining place to explore how design affects power production. The blades on modern turbines “capture” the wind and use it to rotate the drive shaft of a generator. As we mentioned above the spinning shaft of the generator spins wires near magnets to generate electricity. How well you design and orient your blades can greatly impact how fast these blades spin and how much power your turbine produces.

      Experiments with blades can be simple or very complicated, depending on how deeply you want to explore. Some blade variables you can test include:

      • Length
      • Number
      • Pitch
  • If you are doing this for a science fair project you should focus on just one of these variables at a time as your results can get confusing quite quickly.
  • For other wind turbine ideas and lesson plans , click on the and go to the teacher-friendly www.KidWind.org site.
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