Researchers say ocean winds could power all of human civilization

12 October, 2017, 00:38 | Author: Garry Little
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But the new research suggests that if the wind energy flowing over the oceans can be converted into electric energy then, it is sufficient enough to power the human civilization.

The research was supported by the Fund for Innovative Climate and Energy Research and an Carnegie Institution for Science endowment.

But extracting efficient energy from wind involves more than putting turbines in the path of gale-force winds.

Most of the energy captured by large wind farms originate higher up in the atmosphere and is transported down to the surface where the turbines may extract this energy.

Recent studies show that land-based wind farms will only provide 1.5 watts of power per square meter, not 7 watts as previously estimated. This limit occurs, because on land many natural and human structures are present which creates friction and this eventually slows down the wind speed. The authors point to other research which has concluded that the maximum rate of electricity generation for land-based wind farms is limited by the rate at which the energy is moved down towards the ground from high up in the atmosphere.

India vs Australia 2017, 2nd T20I: Hits and Misses
Henriques scored 62 off 46 balls, including four fours and four sixes, while Head made 48 with the help of five fours and a six. India enjoy an excellent head-to-head record against the visitors, having won 10 and lost four out of the 14 matches played.

"The real question is", Caldeira said, "can the atmosphere over the ocean move more energy downward than the atmosphere over land is able to?"

The study used computer models which compared the total output of huge onshore wind farms in Kansas with the potential output of an equivalent-sized wind farm floating in the Atlantic ocean.

New research from the Carnegie Institution for Science has highlighted the "considerable opportunity" of developing offshore wind in the open ocean, which could generate up to three to five times as much energy as wind farms on land. This is largely due to the fact that large amounts of heat pouring out of the North Atlantic Ocean and into the overlying atmosphere, especially during the winter. By GCR staff0 CommentsA wind farm in the middle of the North Atlantic would be five times as efficient as one onshore and could provide limitless low-priced energy, says a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. That means, on an annual mean basis, the wind power available in the North Atlantic could be sufficient to power the world.

According to the researchers, the huge wind power resources identified in the study can provide strong incentives to develop lower-cost technologies that can operate in the open-ocean environment and transmit the electricity to land.

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