Skinny windmill blades

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by megafiddle, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. megafiddle


    May 25, 2011
    Why are windmill blades so skinny?

    Wouldn't wide blades like a fan be better?

    Obviously not, but why?
  2. tastybasslines

    tastybasslines Banned

    May 9, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    The lighter they are, less wind is needed to turn them and generate power? Therefore more efficient?
  3. Ziltoid


    Apr 10, 2009
  4. Wide blades would create drag. /Thread.
  5. Sponsored by:

  6. lowfreq33


    Jan 27, 2010
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    Ever seen one of those up close? Each blade is longer than a semi trailer, and about 8 feet wide.
  7. mc_muench


    Sep 28, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
    Its freaky when they time them all the same and at night its hundreds of red dots, then nothing, then hundreds of red dots, then nothing, then hundreds of red dots, then nothing.
  8. machine gewehr

    machine gewehr

    Sep 17, 2005

  9. mc_muench


    Sep 28, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
  10. Topspin

    Topspin What's my name again?

    Dec 15, 2010
    I played Tom Sawyer with a pick once. Shame on me.

    Driving back from Colorado at night, I saw this. Felt like I was tripping balls for about 40 miles. I felt quite dumb when I figured out what it was. ;)
  11. MX21


    Sep 28, 2007
    Grass Valley, CA
    Long, thin (high aspect ratio) airfoils are more efficient. That's why gliders have long thin wings.
  12. Jim Nazium

    Jim Nazium Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2007
    Takoma Park, MD (DC)
    It's just a fasion trend, like jeans or neckties. In the 70s we had big wide windmill blades with tie-dye colors.
  13. AnchorHoy


    Dec 29, 2008
    New Jersey
    Yes Indeedy

    There's a plant just across the river from me in Bristol PA that makes blades for these. Most definitely an Oversize Load when they're loaded up for shipment - in the neighborhood of 80' long for the trailer alone
  14. 1958Bassman


    Oct 20, 2007
    Wide blades would be a huge problem if the wind exceeds their ability to resist the forces. Also, the tower would have to be a lot stronger and that would raise the price to the point of being uneconomical.
  15. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC