Montana State University

Wind Applications Center

Efficiency

  • Efficiency is determined dividing instantaneous power produced by the turbine by the theoretical power available in the wind at that instant, and multiplying by 100%:
    Efficiency = [ (Turbine Power )/(Theoretical Power) ] X 100%
  • Click this link for a discussion of theoretical power: Theoretical Power or Potential Power
  • The cut-in wind speed for the Skystream is 8 mph: That is, the turbine wont produce power at wind speeds under 8 miles per hour.
  • Below 8 mph wind speeds no power is being produced, but since some potential power exists the efficiency will be zero.
  • Unrealistic efficiency values sometimes occur in gusty conditions.
  • Sudden changes in wind speed are picked up by the anemometer measuring speed, but the turbine doesn't react as quickly.
  • It is difficult to perfectly synchronize anemometer values used to calculate theoretical power and turbine power data
  • A 'running average' gives the best estimate of overall turbine efficiency