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By Daryl666
Why not only a few large turbines to one large generator?

as physics and engineering has proven in many tests beforehand. it is far more efficient to have fewer mechanical parts (being that mechanical parts have a terrable efficiency) the cost per kilowatt actually would rise with the number of parts inbetween the actual blades and the generator itself. (not to mention the increase complexity and maintenence for every extra mechanical part) the reason that the generators are housed in the Nacell at the top of the turbines is to allow the mechanical losses to be at the absolute minimum. efficiency of electricity at a high voltage is a lot better than a mechanical part could ever reach. to a magnitude of up to 70% better.
By scottw
You are describing a mulit stage turbine. the problem with your proposal is that each sucessive stage of a mulit stage turbine must be larger than the previous stage or wind mill because the exiting fluid (wind) has less energy than when it entered the stage. current commercial wind turbine blades are in the range of eighty meters long, if each stage is 10% larger the total height would become excessivly large and beyond the structural integrity limits of the current materials and the construction cost would be prohibitive.

jacobpatrick wrote:does any body know if the clever science folk have harnessed geo thermal energy yet.
we could place a small power plant on top of a small active volcano.
im sure there are pros cons and relative inviromental dangers

As to Geo thermal powergeneration it has been in use for many years in California. See this facility generates 750MW from geothermal wells the current issue there is that water extracted in the form of steam must be replenished to maintain sufficient steam pressure for turbine operation. they inject reclaimed water into the ground from nearby city water reclaim facilities
By steelbull
Huge Solar Plants Bloom in Desert
The barren deserts of Southern California are known for relentless sunshine and miles of empty space -- the perfect combination for the world's most ambitious solar-energy projects.

Two Southern California utility companies are planning to develop a pair of sun-powered power plants that they claim will dwarf existing solar facilities and could rival fossil-fuel-driven power plants. Huge Solar Plants Bloom in Desert

Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric are working with Stirling Energy Systems, a Phoenix startup that has paired a large and efficient solar dish with a 200-year-old Stirling engine design.

Stirling Energy Systems is planning to build two separate solar farms, one with the capacity to generate 500 megawatts of electricity in the Mojave Desert near Victorville, California, for SoCal Edison, and a 300-megawatt plant in the Imperial Valley, near Calexico, California, for SDG&E. The utilities have signed 20-year deals to buy all the juice the farms can turn out, and have options to expand the plants if they are successful.

"Without question, this will be the largest solar project in the world," said Gil Alexander, a spokesman for SoCal Edison. "It will be bigger than all U.S. solar-energy projects combined."

Alexander said traditional coal or gas plants typically generate 500 to 1,000 megawatts, and that current solar farms are much smaller -- generally in the 35- to 80-megawatt range. At the end of 2004, the United States had only 397 megawatts of solar-energy capacity, according to the U.S. Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration.

"There is a possibility with this project that solar energy could go commercial in a big way for the first time," said Alexander. "It's playing in the big leagues."

I found this article on while I was thinking along the same lines of trying to find ideas for renewable energy sources. I think this is a wonderful idea. I mean think about all the open desert land where the sun shines the hardest and longest. I don't think enough has been done to take advantage of the sun as an energy source.

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