Wind energy on our planet is enough to ensure the energy needs of all humanity. In the upper atmosphere, the faster the wind, the stronger and more frequent, can provide more energy than onshore and offshore turbines.
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In their new study, the group of scientists led by Ken Caldeira, the Carnegie Institute (USA), calculates the total energy that can be obtained from the wind as well as the consequences of using wind turbines on the high floor. to the planet's climate. This work was published in mid-September in Nature Climate Change.
The team calculated the amount of energy obtained from the ground wind and atmospheric winds. The ground wind is understood as the wind that can turn turbines placed on high towers on the ground or the sea surface. And the atmospheric wind is the wind that rotates turbines in the upper atmosphere, due to the combination of air and turbines (air kits). This study addresses geophysical limitations and considers technical and economic factors.
The total wind energy on Earth is 100 times higher than the energy consumed worldwide
The turbines create drag that reduces the amount of wind and the wind speed slows down. The higher the number of air turbines, the more energy is collected. However, to some extent, the wind is so slow that even with more turbines, it will not add electricity. This study by Caldeira also has the purpose of calculating the energy limits obtained.
Thanks to the models they created, the team calculated that the surface wind could secure 400 terawatts of energy, while the atmospheric wind - more than 1,800 terawatts.
The demand for energy consumption by modern civilizations on Earth needs about 18 terawatts. Thus, the wind surface alone can guarantee more than 20 times the energy consumption of the world, and potential air kite turbines can achieve a quantity of energy up to 100 times the demand. The current.
To achieve maximum wind energy recovery, the Earth is forced to endure climate consequences. But studies also show that if only wind power is exploited at a level that does not exceed the current world demand, this effect is negligible, provided that the distribution of turbines spreads evenly on the left surface. land not only concentrated in some areas.
The recovery of wind energy to meet current needs only increases the temperature of the Earth's surface by 0.1 degrees Celsius and the rainfall changes only 1 percent. In general, the impact on the environment is too small, not much concern.
"This study has demonstrated that the factors limiting the development of wind energy are economic, technological and policy factors, not geophysical factors," Caldeira said .