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Handbook of Energy by Christopher G. Morris, Cutler J. Cleveland

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Section 4

Wind

The exploitation of wind power for useful energy is both a practice dating back to ancient times and a key component of today’s effort to substitute renewable energy sources for fossil fuels. Use of wind energy has progressed historically through three stages. First came the use of wind for propulsion of water craft via sails. Then the windmill came into use in agriculture, originally to grind grain and then later to drain water from fields or raise it from a well. Finally (much later) came the use of wind to power turbines to generate electricity. The two historic uses of wind power, sailing ships and windmills, are both still in existence today, though on a lesser scale than in the past.

The earliest use of the sail is thought ...

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