These devices take advantage of the force of the wind to produce electricity through huge blades that move a rotor. The largest wind turbine installed to date is the E-126 from the German firm Enercon. It is a giant windmill 138 meters high and with a diameter of 126 between the blades that can generate 6 megawatts (MW) per year, enough energy to cover the needs of 5,000 homes.
Spain, which has nearly 500 wind farms, is the world’s second largest producer of this type of energy, after Germany.
Although, according to data from Red Eléctrica de España, wind turbines only cover 10% of our electricity demand, at 3:53 p.m. on March 4, 10,032 MW were generated in this way in our country, a historical record that represented 28% of the demand of the Peninsula at that time and that even exceeded the energy produced by all the Spanish nuclear power plants, which is around 7,740 MW.
The useful life of these mills is about 20 years, which usually more than compensates for the economic effort that it costs to manufacture them, but even so, the installation of a wind turbine is a delicate matter: the price of a 1.5 MW unit is close to to 1.1 million euros, a figure to which must be added the costs of licences, works, power lines and maintenance.