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6.2: Winds Blowing over the Lands

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    The patterns of winds blowing over the lands are much more complicated than those of winds over the oceans and seas. The speed and the direction of winds depend on many more factors. In Fig.\(\PageIndex{1}\) there is a map of the average annual speed of wind over the continental United States at the height of 80 meters over the ground level, from the Web page of the US Department of Energy. Maps for other heights can be found on the same Web page.

    Map of US. The middle region from Texs to North Dakota has very high wind power potential which falls off to both coasts
    Figure \(\PageIndex{1}\): The average annual speed of wind at the height of 80 m over the ground lever for the continental United States (source: Wikipedia).
    Highest installed power is TX, then IA, OK, CA, KS, least is southeast
    Figure \(\PageIndex{2}\): US map showing the total wind power installed in each State (source: Wikipedia).

    But the direction and the speed of wind in a given location may change even many times over the same day and a big-scale map like the one in Fig. \(\PageIndex{1}\) cannot include such characteristics. In a region with many hills and valleys – and especially in a mountain region – much more detailed characteristics of the local wind patters are needed, if one plans to build wind turbines in a given area.

    6.2: Winds Blowing over the Lands is shared under a CC BY 1.3 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Tom Giebultowicz.

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