Connecting wind turbines to electric cars

KENNEWICK — Did you catch the article on the wind turbines?

More than 132 blades have been delivered to Pasco, and there are 315 still to arrive.

They are destined to be a part of the Lower Snake River Wind Project, and which is estimated to produce enough power to supply 100,000 homes.

Wind for conversion to power is not a 21st century technology idea. Not by a long shot. Using the "evening breeze" for power may date back to the eighth century, but you don't need to go that far back in time to see ahistoric example however.

Just think of almost any picture you've seen of a farm in the old west. There has to be a windmill spinning in that photo. Itwas a simple way to raise pull water from the earth for irrigation or to supply that water for the livestock.

Basically, look at any old electric fan. Now think the opposite. The fan takes electricity and makes, well, wind.

A wind turbine uses the air passing through it to turn a shaft. The shaft is connected to a generator, and the spinning creates current.

All these turbines popping up on our hillsides are a "green" way of creating more of the electricity we will need.

In the future, we are going to face some tough choices. People are already complaining of the "eye pollution" spoiling our views, however we will have a lot of electric cars coming on the market. They are going torequire many places to "plug in."

Think of what it would do to the current power grid if we had to re-energize all the cars in America.

Right now, we don't have the power to charge that many batteries overnight. We aren't building any new nuclear plants. Damming more rivers doesn't seem a good choice.

So we are looking to the sky as a way to create some electricity.

We've done it before. Ask any of those farmers who have fallen to sleep to the sound of the wind passing through the creaking tines of those wooden windmills.