2. Earth Week - Harvesting Wind Power
Sustainability is the capacity to endure.
Healthy ecosystems and environments are necessary to the survival of humans and other organisms, but it is human activity that has the greatest negative effect on the environment. There are a number of ways to reduce this negative human impact and the majority of people in the world have an urgent sense that we need to secure a better future for the present generation and to protect the future of generations to come.
We are going to look at why it is important to protect our environment for future generations and why we need skilled and forward thinking engineers to do this.
Renewable energy is one of the best changes the world can make to slow the rising global temperature. This is because renewable energy sources such as solar and wind don't emit carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.
Why Does Wind Blow?
Wind is created because warm air is lighter than cold air, therefore warm air rises and cold air sinks and this movement of air is called wind.
Wild Wind Facts
- Wind energy is clean and renewable.
- Windmills date all the way back to the year 2000 BC where they were used in China.
- In the past sailors used wind energy.
- Farmers once used windmills to grind their grains and to pump water.
- When we look around it is easy to spot wind turbines on the horizon - they are generating electricity from the wind.
- A large group of wind turbines is called a wind farm.
- One wind turbine can power 500 homes.
- Wind turbines can be as tall as 200 metres and have blades that are 60 metres long
- Small turbines are sometimes used to charge batteries or as backup power in caravans.
Wind Through the Ages
A little extra task for those of you who are interested...
How long have humans been harnessing wind energy?
You can draw out a timeline showing the progression of how we have used wind to our benefit. Remember to send us a picture of what you find!
More about Harvesting Wind Energy
What is a Wind Turbine?
A Wind Turbine is a device that changes the movement energy from the wind into electricity. Wind Turbines are a very important energy source in Scotland - in fact we produce enough energy from wind farms to provide energy for 2 Scotland's!
What is a Windmill?
A Windmill changes movement energy from the wind into mechanical energy. In the past farmers have used windmills to grind grains and also to pump water.
Now you can have a go at making your own Windmill. The video below shows you how to do this and we also have a Make Your Own Windmill Worksheet to help.
We have also found you this great resource from Sustainable Learning (link to full PDF work booklet) and the activity we think you'll really enjoy is finding all the things that need wind to work. Remember to let us see your colouring in!
If you have enjoyed these activities please share them with your friends and family.