Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Wind Turbine coil/magnet design

  1. Aug 4, 2008 #1
    As part of a wind turbine design project, I have come to selecting the most appropriate coil and permanent magnet configuration.
    The aim is to design a turbine capable of 3kW (max), and approximately 300rpm. It will use mechanical furling to regulate speed.

    So far, I have only seen plans/ideas on generators up to about 1.5kW, using turbines up to about 3m in diameter. They seem to use 9 coils of #14 gauge wire, wound 36 times for each coil. This is typically used with 12 permanent magnets 2"x1"x1/2", and at a mounting diameter of about 250mm. These are wired by connecting groups of 3 coils in series, the wiring up in 'Star'. It is then rectified and converted to 12vDC for storage.

    By going to a 5m turbine, I am hoping to generate enough power to be self sufficient (but still tied to grid), and use the excess for other ideas I have down the track. It will need to be mounted high enough (12-16m) to be in a high velocity wind zone.

    I am trying to understand from first principles (almost), how I would go about determining the following variables:
    Coils - quantity, wire size, number of windings, coil shape, mounting radius.
    Magnets - Quantity, strength, material, physical dimensions.

    Does anyone have any information or calculations to help me understand better, the relationship between these factors and what components I should be selecting?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 5, 2008 #2

    I work for [a wind turbine company] and we do this for a living. I am really curious to get into the discussion but am under many non-disclosure agreements to the design and technology that we work with. I can see you have dug up some pretty decent information. If you want to learn some general info about wind turbines and such there are some good articles on our site. Let me know if you develop any decent new technology and I might can assist you somehow.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 8, 2008
  4. Oct 21, 2008 #3
    I am learning/designing a turbine from the ground up. And interested in joining forces. This is a quick note and I will add my working later.
  5. Oct 21, 2008 #4
    Unless you are in a place with high average windspeed wind turbines are a waste of time. For my location with lower than average windspeed websites suggest I might need 3 x 5 metre turbines at something like 25 meters above ground in order to come anywhere near supplying our full electricity needs. The cost would be enormous and the system would never pay for itself. Turbines run at far below peak output for most of the time.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook