Picture a boat 7,000 years ago carrying pottery, iron tools and a fresh haul of fish from the Nile. Okay, now how is it moving? Wind, of course! Fast-forward 5,000 years to China in 200 B.C., and we see simple windmills used to pump water — once again, harnessing the impressive power of the wind.
While we are the first to commercially exploit the wind’s power on an industrialized scale, using the power of wind — and that of the other elements such as water and sun — is not a new concept. Nevertheless, the progression to today’s wind farms both on and offshore is striking.
In the UK alone, onshore wind farms have the capacity of more than 8,800 megawatts, and offshore farms have the capacity of over 5,000 megawatts. So how do wind farms produce all this energy? Let’s briefly go back to basics. Wind farms are made up of groups of wind turbines, located within relatively close vicinity to each other. More often than not, wind farms are home to hundreds of turbines across hundreds of square miles, and each one produces electricity.