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Wind Turbine Installation


DeepBass9

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I recently have bought an 800W wind turbine. I am waiting for the couriers to deliver the turbine. In the meantime though I have built the tower. It is 7m tall built from 40mm borehole pipe and pipe flanges. It is on a hill about 40m behind my house. The base is concreted onto the rock outcrop. There are two 3m pipe sections, and then a flange to attach the guy wires, and then another 1m section with another flange on top to bolt the turbine to.

The first pic shows the pole, and the second gives an idea of the height of the hill. It is quire clear around the site so there shouldn't be too much turbulence. 

 

tower1.jpg

tower2.jpg

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I'm still pondering that one. I have a variety of bits of 8 and 10mm steel rope I could use. And then also the usual assortment of fencing wire that you find in the barn. I'll see what I can make up, either with the steel rope or 2 or 3 strands of HT fencing wire. There are 4 needed, each about 10m long.

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If you have got 10 mm steel rope I would use that. I am not an engineer but that tower looks like it is going to need lots of help.

That may be overkill, what's the breaking strain of steel rope? The tower is not that high really, you could probably get away with fencing wire.

What I am going to use is Eskom conductor and kill two birds with one stone. Eskom left me hundreds of metres of the stuff, which is aluminium conductor with a steel core. I am then going to join them all together with another cable and bury that as the earthing, kind of like this:

 

 

earth.jpg

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Maybe not so many earth spikes, but I'll rip a nice long trench with the tractor and bury the conductor as deep as I can get it.

I am going to put fuses on the cable at the base of the tower, and again at the charge controller, but hopefully if there is a strike it will pop the fuses at the tower.

 

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1 hour ago, DeepBass9 said:

I am going to put fuses on the cable at the base of the tower

Hi DeepBass9, Just my 2cents worth on this. If you willing to spend money on a surge arrestor, rather install one instead of the Fuse, although a fuse is good for over current protection, it is not really effective for over voltage protection. The normal fuses used for DC can withstand up to 1000Volts.  By the time the current rises in the circuit it means the voltage has already reached the charge controller or what ever the wind turbine is connected to. By the time the fuse fails either to over current or over voltage, it might already be to late to save anything.

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11 hours ago, Jaco de Jongh said:

Thanks, never to old to learn, the last ones I was exposed to a few years back was DC. Time to look into the new technology.

All turbines as far as I know works with 3phase AC, most just have the controller built into it so it outputs DC directly from the turbine. I didn't want that as the turbine would be far from the batteries and the loss on dc, not to mention the size of cable needed would be a problem. Therefore I prefer to use unregulated 3phase AC, run it to the batteries, connect it to the charge controller and have thinner wires which is cheaper plus almost no loss.

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I have reduced the height of the tower now to 4m, it should still be in clear air as it is on the crest of the hill.

In terms of fuses/ circuit breakers/surge arrestors, what would be best? I would like the circuit to be broken at the generator if there is a strike, not in the battery room.

I should have the turbine up in an hour or two, watch this space.......

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6 hours ago, DeepBass9 said:

There was a huge storm here last night with a blast of wind so I'm a bit nervous now of a 7m tower. I think I'll take one pipe section out and make it a 4m tower for the time being and see how it goes. It does look a bit spindly and the generator weighs about 20kg.

 

How are you going to raise and lower it?

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3 hours ago, DeepBass9 said:

I have reduced the height of the tower now to 4m, it should still be in clear air as it is on the crest of the hill.

In terms of fuses/ circuit breakers/surge arrestors, what would be best? I would like the circuit to be broken at the generator if there is a strike, not in the battery room.

I should have the turbine up in an hour or two, watch this space.......

Maybe fuses on all 3 lines? Would be the cheapest. The controller has its on fuse at the back also if something goes wrong, but not so sure about lightning. The controller will probably jump 1m into the air before the fuse blows. 

Because it is AC, you can also try using a 3phase AC 3pole Breaker.

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6 hours ago, DeepBass9 said:

There was a huge storm here last night with a blast of wind so I'm a bit nervous now of a 7m tower. I think I'll take one pipe section out and make it a 4m tower for the time being and see how it goes. It does look a bit spindly and the generator weighs about 20kg.

tower.jpg

You will have to add one of those aircraft warning lights on top of that thing to keep them from crashing into it.

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You can keep an eye on the regulator, you will see when the wind starts picking up that the Amp needle will start moving. In constant 50km/h wind you should be getting around 60A. In 20 to 30km/h wind it should be around 10A to 20A. You can always try an MPPT controller for maximum charge.

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2 minutes ago, Johann1982 said:

It will also automatically brake if the wind speed is too high. Just make sure your tower can handle the force.

My father had an old turbine like that. In strong wind it would go so fast that it'd get blade slap(sounds like a helicopter). Then it would usually tilt over backwards, and drop back into the wind a few seconds later. It would do this repeatedly, scaring the heck out of you each time.

Eventually it broke a blade and that was the end of it.

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