Wind Power Links:
There has been a lot of media & internet hype about wind power. The links below cover both sides (well not really, we will not list the "wind will save the world" sites, as they are too full of bad information).
One of the problems with small wind turbines is the uninformed media hype which leads to unrealistic expectations. Just like solar, hydro, or any other renewable energy, there are some claims that cannot possibly be true. We are not big fans of small wind, mainly because most of the ads for them do not meet any kind of reality check, reliability issues, and a lot of misinformation.
Another issue is the actual cost, both short and long term. You have to consider the cost of the tower and installation, not just the cost of the turbine.
A common problem - especially with many of the imported units and VAWT's (Verticle Axis Wind Turbine) is reliability. VAWT units also very often have highly over rated output specs. VAWT hype was hot for a while, but seems to have died down quite a bit due to all the bad publicity and failure to perform.
Manufacturers and advocates are also famous for over estimating how much power you can get, especially from small wind turbines. http://www.wind-works.org/wulf/index.html is probably the best place to start for information and actual field tests. The major problem we see with small wind is not that they don't work - they do - it is that they almost never produce anything even close to the advertised or max. Another factor is that people nearly always overestimate how much wind they get.
Feel free to suggest more links, both pro and con.
Netherlands small wind turbine actual field tests.
NREL Wind Research Page - Includes some actual independent tests on small wind turbines.
TLG Windpower 500 Watt wind generators. TLG Windpower Hour Internet Radio (1 hour) on Greentalk Network.
YouTube video on why PMA wind turbines seldom produce as advertised.
Things are not going as planned in Europe it seems http://www.wind-watch.org/news/2009/...lete-disaster/
WindWorks Org: http://www.wind-works.org/index.html (probably the best site around for cutting past the BS and hype about wind)
http://www.wind-watch.org/ News Watch about wind power in Europe
Wind maps for Arizona @ NAU: http://wind.nau.edu/maps/
American Wind Energy Association http://www.awea.org/
Canadian Wind Energy Association http://www.canwea.ca/
Wind Energy Resource Maps USA http://www.nrel.gov/wind/resource_assessment.html & http://www.windpoweringamerica.gov/wind_maps.asp
World Wind Energy Association http://www.wwindea.org/home/index.php
Mike Klemens site on small wind generator comparisons http://www.ndsu.nodak.edu/ndsu/klemen/index.htm
Wind Power Monthly Magazine (lot of hype here, but some good info) http://www.windpower-monthly.com/
Windpower Maps - Limited areas so far, but good source for the NW USA http://www.windpowermaps.org/default.asp