As horizontal-shaft wind turbines (HAWTs) increase in size, they become more visually and audibly disturbing. This limits the use of the energy resource of wind in cities as even small turbines of a few tens of kW capacity require tall masts and are deemed visually unpleasant. The challenge to produce a wind turbine with the same capacity as rooftop solar has led to the development of a range of vertical-axis wind turbines (VAWT).
An advantage of wind over solar power is that it can blow continuously, and there is a distinct advantage in using wind as a power source for behind-the-meter applications. A wide range of different designs for VAWT have appeared, both in research fields and on the market, but few seem to have been successful, many simply being novelties. The most common are the rotating advertising signs at service stations. Many types have failed because the basic construction is visually unattractive. Nevertheless, VAWT offers a number of advantages.
Advantages of VAWTs over HAWTs
Among the critical differences between VAWTs and HAWTs are the following:
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