Most wind turbines generating electricity today are horizontal axis machines. It is predominantly medium-sized enterprises that have pushed wind market developments. Wind power plants have reached a high technical level and
current systems reach powers up to several megawatts, whereas the wind generators of the 1980s were in the power range below 100 kW.
A horizontal axis wind turbine generally consists of the following components (see Figure 5.12):
• rotor blades, rotor hub, rotor brake and if need be, a pitch mechanism
• electrical generator and if need be, a gearbox
• wind measurement system and yaw drive (azimuth tracking)
• nacelle, tower and foundation
• control, substation and mains connection.
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