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A question - "produce roughly 30,000 kWh of electricity per year, which corresponds to the power use of ten Dutch households". Most calculations I have seen assume at least 5.500 kWh per household in Europe - and often much more than that. How is your 3000 KWh derived??

Kris De Decker


@ Bob

The Dutch use less power than other Europeans. Depending on the source, statistical information gives a yearly electricity use of 3,000 to 3,500 kWh per year per household.

One explanation is that the Netherlands has produced its own natural gas since the 1960s. Many appliances that are often powered by electricity in other countries (water boilers, cooking stoves) are 100% powered by gas in the Netherlands.

This will change, because their policy is to stop using gas and power everything with electricity.

Phil P


If you hand carve a blade, you still have to get energy from eating food to power the human. So calling it "zero" energy used is bad accounting/ misleading.



Shutup Phil.



"Shutting down the wind turbine at lower speeds..."

I think you mean higher speeds?



Ben, re-read the article. It shuts down at lower speeds *than the others* to minimize the wear and tear on the machine, especially at a time when the storage system is probably fully charged anyway.



@Jim and @Ben: I had the exact same confusion and even went to the comments now before finishing the article. Your add-on to the sentence explains the lower speeds nicely Jim. My first thought was also to put 'higher' there, because it's about the logic of the shutting off. Then with that explained, more shutting off at high wind speeds saves the machine. Putting 'loeer' next to 'speed' makes it pretty hard to interpret that as 'in relation to other windmills' shutoff speed';-)

Kris De Decker


@ Jim, Ben, Wiebren

Thanks, I rewrote the sentence.

Pr. Théodose


Another wood product could be useful to build turbine blades and tower is densified wood :
It is obtained by boiling wood a 30% solution of hydrogen peroxide, then compressing it until its height is reduced by 80%. Mechanical properties are then 3 to 10 times higher than for the original wood. Hydrogen peroxide can be produced sustainably if you generate hydrogen from renewable sources of water and energy.



An issue used to be the inverter that was required to be always ready to transform the DC current in AC. Maybe a solution could be a small battery that could be loaded, and the inverter would only start once the battery is full.

Jim Baerg


Unless I missed it, you might include some mention and history of the Jacobs Wind Generator, which dominated the pre war market for small windmills. And it had wood blades too. Pretty low tech, indestructible and used as far away as the South Pole.



think bamboo!

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