The Wind Power System for the Experimental House 0

Our Off-Grid House with Wind Turbine and Solar Array

Our Off-Grid House with Wind Turbine and Solar Array

Part of our off-grid power system for our experimental house would be a wind turbine.

We estimated our monthly load requirements for the experimental house  to be about 150 kWh.  Part of this load would be supplied by a 920 watt solar panel array, but we also wanted to use a wind generator to supplement the solar power.  This was especially true for the winter season where a solar array of over 2 kW would be needed to supply the load in November, December and January.

The average monthly wind speed, based on Saskatoon airport data, is 10.4 mph and the average for the three winter months is 9.9 mph.  A wind generator’s output at a given wind speed depends primarily on the swept area of the propeller blades.  Manufacturers generally publish power curves to show the power output of their products at various wind speeds.

Installing the Whisper H80 wind turbine

Installing the Whisper H80 wind turbine

Wind generators from several different manufacturers were compared on the basis of price and of the power output at the average wind speeds for our building site just outside of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.  The Whisper H80 (now the Whisper 200) was found to be the best value per watt. It was rated to produce 125 kWh / month at a wind speed of 10 mph and 160 kWh / month at a speed of 11 mph. The average wind speed during November, December and October is 9.9 mph, so this would be more than adequate to supplement the expected 50 kWh / month from the solar array during this period.

The terrain at our building site is rolling prairie with some sections of bush so the power output was expected to be about 10 % less that at the airport with its flat terrain.  The wind generator was designed to be mounted on a 40 foot tower to bring it above the turbulent layer that generally extends to about 30 feet.

Monthly Energy Output of the Whisper 200 (formerly H80) and Whisper 100 (formerly H40) Wind Generators

Whisper H80 specifications:

    • Swept Area: 80 square feet
    • Rated Power: 860 Watts at the rated wind speed of 22 mph
    • Peak Power: 950 Watts at a wind speed of 24 mph
    • Peak Amps: 33 A @ 29 V
    • Cut-in Wind Speed: 7 mph
    • Rated electricity at 12 mph average wind speed: 193 kWh/month
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