Glossary of Terms

Airfoil - A structure around which air flows creating lift.

Amps - The number of electrons flowing past in a second; similar to litres per second in a water pipeline; defines electrical current in a wire

Anemometer - An instrument for measuring wind velocity.

Bearing - A device that supports, guides, and reduces the friction of motion between fixed and moving machine parts.

Bernoulli's Principle - States that increased air velocity produces decreased pressure.

Betz' Law - A mathematical proof that states only 59% of the kinetic energy from the wind can be converted into mechanical energy by a wind turbine with a disc-like rotor.

Blade Swept Area -The circular area that the rotor blades pass over.

Blade Tip Velocity -The speed in meters/second of the tip of the rotor blade.

Coefficient of Variation - A mathematical calculation (standard deviation x 100 /mean) that provides information that can be used to compare different sets of data.

Greenhouse Gases - Greenhouse gases are produced primarily through the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil and gas) to produce heat, electricity and transportation. These gases trap the heat of the sun and cause global warming. Green house gases are carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and sulphur dioxide.

Kyoto Protocol - An international agreement on climate change that calls for reductions in carbon emissions from industrialized countries by the year 2008 - 2012.

Multimeter - An instrument designed to measure AC/DC voltage, batteries, DC current, resistance, diodes and continuity.

Standard Deviation - A mathematical calculation used on a set of data to assess the amount of scatter or dispersion from the mean, or average. It is an indication of accuracy.

Tachometer - An instrument for measuring revolutions per minute.

Tip Speed Ratio - The blade tip velocity divided by the wind speed. The tip speed ratio is how much faster, than the windspeed, the blade tips travel.

Torque - The strength of rotational force usually measured in Newton-Meters.

Volts - The electrical force or pressure behind the electrons in a circuit; similar to water pressure in a pipe line

Watts - The total amount of electrical energy per second equal to Amps x Watts