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Physics of Wind Energy



The purpose of a wind turbine is to turn the kinetic energy of the wind into electrical energy.  This is the idea of most machines as energy can only be converted, it cannot be created or destroyed.  Like any moving mass, the kinetic energy is calculated through the equation K=1/2mv^2.  For calculating the kinetic energy in a wind turbine we would use the wind speed for velocity.  The mass would be the particular volume of air.  You can also find the power in the wind a turbine is using to generate its electrical energy.  To find the power you would use the equation P=1/2 x air density x area x wind speed^3 x time.This shows us that the power of wind is dependent on 3 variables.  We see that the area affects the power showing us that location of these wind turbines will actually play a role in how much power is generated while the others cannot be controlled.  

   Image result for wind turbine

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I wonder how exactly the kinetic energy is converted into electrical energy. I understand that energy is conserved, but it amazes me how mechanical energy can become electrical energy. 

Wouldn't the kinetic energy which is converted into electrical energy be the kinetic energy of the spinning blades of the wind turbine, not of the wind itself?

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