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How Wind Power Works

Learn how the wind generates electricity.

It only takes a breeze blowing about seven miles per hour to generate electricity. Wind blowing over the blades of a wind turbine causes the turbine blades to turn a shaft that runs a generator, which produces electricity. The fuel is free, and it’s a clean source of electricity, producing no air emissions or waste, as well as requiring very little water. When the wind stops blowing, we rely on other types of electricity generation to produce our customers’ power.

To maximize the electricity output of a wind turbine, it must be located in an area with strong, steady winds. Not all geographic locations are suited for wind energy production. We are fortunate to operate in parts of the country where conditions are considered ideal for wind power development.

We have improved the predictability and integration of variable wind generation on our systems through advanced, high-tech wind forecasting and new operating practices.

  1. Wind blows...
  2. across tall wind turbines...
  3. to turn huge turbine blades...
  4. which spin generators to create electricity.
  5. A transformer increases the voltage to send electricity over...
  6. distribution lines. Then local transformers reduce the voltage...
  7. for you to use.

Additional Resources

American Wind Energy Association (external link)
National Renewable Energy Laboratory (external link)
Energy Classroom (external link)
Grand Meadow Wind Farm Facts
Nobles Wind Farm Facts
Sign Up for Windsource (Residential)
Sign Up for Windsource (Business)

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Energy Saving Tip

Have your home checked for leaky ducts, drafts around doors and windows, fireplace dampers, and other places where air might escape.

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Break Ground, Not the Law

Always call 811 before digging in your yard to avoid hitting buried gas or electric lines. Not only is it the safe thing to do, but it's the law.