Dossier Wind Energy

The power of the wind

Axpo is the largest producer of renewable energies in Switzerland. Swiss hydropower, biomass, as well as wind energy at the best locations in Europe: The sustainable energy future has already begun at Axpo.

background information

Wind energy from A to Z

Wind energy from A to Z

Nominal capacity

Nominal capacity is the output capacity of a wind power plant generator running at full load and measured in megawatt hours (MW). Wind energy plants reach nominal capacity at different wind speeds.  

Onshore wind energy plants

Plants located and producing wind energy on land.

Offshore wind energy plants

The wind plants benefit from the high wind speeds on the open sea. They are located along coastlines. The Axpo subsidiary holds interests in 80 plants in the North Sea with a total capacity of 400 MW.

Location

Location refers to a coherent area that is suitable for the utilisation of wind energy. The location has space for at least 3 wind energy plants. 

Wind energy plant

Wind energy plant refers to the wind power plant or the wind turbine. It transforms the power of wind into electrical energy and feeds it into the power grid.

A wind power plant comprises the following elements:

  • Rotor blades: The rotor blades of a wind power plant convert the kinetic energy of air particles into rotation energy. Most wind energy rotors have three blades.
  • Rotor: The rotor relays the rotation energy to a generator that transforms it into electricity.
  • Nacelle: The nacelle houses the hub, the brake gear, and the generator.
  • Tower: The tower supports the mass of the nacelle and the rotor blades and must withstand the enormous static load coming from the wind.
  • Foundation: The tower is placed in a foundation. In order to ensure the stability of a wind energy plant, different constructions are required depending on the conditions of the underground.

Wind farm

A wind farm refers to a configuration of more than three wind energy plants at a location.

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