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Wind Turbine Profit Calculator

Created by Rangsimatiti Binda Saichompoo
Reviewed by Anna Szczepanek, PhD and Steven Wooding
Last updated: Jul 27, 2023

This tool will calculate your wind turbine profit from energy generated per day. Start by inputting the following variables; total energy generated per day, electricity price per kilowatt hour (kWh), and the total cost of the wind turbine itself. This way, you will be able to predict your wind turbine income.

If needed, you can use the "Total wind power generated" section of our wind turbine profit calculator to approximate your turbine's generated power per day. The surface area of the turbine, wind speed, and air density can help you figure out how much energy is produced in a specific time range.

Types of wind turbines

An animation of wind turbine types.

There are mainly 2 types of wind turbines:

  • Horizontal axis wind turbine (HAWT); and
  • Vertical axis wind turbine (VAWT).

Their differences? They have their own distinctive ways of catching the wind.

As the name implies, HAWT catches directional winds that mostly blow horizontally. This means that if you would like to set up a HAWT, you need to place it facing the wind or with its back facing the wind.

Otherwise, the VAWT can be placed in a location where wind direction is more variable. This type of wind turbine can generate power in any wind direction. However, it's not as efficient as HAWT.

Different conditions can lead to variability in your personal wind turbine income. The more wind load, the more energy can be produced. This wind load calculator can help you place your turbines in the best spot for energy production!

Equation for wind turbine profit

Are wind turbines worth the money? Let's calculate your wind turbine profit to answer this question. It can be determined with the equation shown below.

WTP=P×EPDC\rm WTP = P \times EP - DC

Variables include:

  • WTP\rm WTP — Wind turbine profit (per day);
  • P\rm P — Wind turbine generated power (kWh/day);
  • EP\rm EP — Price of electricity (per kWh); and
  • DC\rm DC — Wind turbine cost (per day).

If you own a business, we suggest our net income calculator for you!

To use this wind turbine profit equation, there are several variables you need to know. Here are some extended descriptions of each variable.

  • Wind turbine generated power
    If you're unsure of how much energy your wind turbine produces per day, you can calculate it through the "wind power generated" section of this calculator (select "No" in answer to the question "Do you know the power generated by the turbine(s)?" to see it).

    Keep in mind that you can change units by selecting from the energy units provided.

  • Price of electricity per energy unit
    Check how much the electricity tariff per energy unit is in your local area.

    If you would like to know your energy usage cost, try this electricity cost calculator!

  • Cost of the wind turbine per day
    This variable is based on how much your wind turbine costs. Basically, how much you pay for your wind turbine daily or monthly.

How to compute energy generation

To determine the wind turbine profit, you need to know how much power is generated by your wind turbines. Here we will explain a simplified computation. If you need a more detailed approach, visit Omni's wind turbine power calculator.

The equation to determine how much energy is generated would be as follows:

P=12×A×ρ×v3×μP=\frac{1}{2} \times A \times \rho \times v^3 \times \mu

This is where:

  • PP — Wind power generated
    This is the value you need for the wind turbine profit calculator section.

  • AA — Air flow area
    This variable is calculated based on which type of wind turbine you possess.

    To determine the surface area of each type, you need these equations:

    • AHAWT=πr²{A}_\textrm{HAWT} = πr²
      where rr is the blade length; and

    • AVAWT=diameter×height{A}_\textrm{VAWT} = \textrm{diameter} \times \textrm{height}
      where the height does not include the length below the blades.

  • ρ\rho — Air density
    This variable is based on temperature. In this calculator, we have set the default value to be a constant of 1.225 kg/m³ at 15 °C or 288.15 K.

    Here you can find the kelvin to Celsius converter for your further use.

  • vv — Wind speed
    There are specific wind velocities based on where you are located. The average wind velocity in the U.S. can range from 4 to 10 m/s.

  • μ\mu — Efficiency
    The efficiency of your turbine. We'll explain this coefficient in more detail in the next section.

Efficiency of wind turbines

Not all wind turbines can work up to 100% efficiency. According to Albert Betz, a German physicist, the maximum efficiency of a wind turbine is 59.3%. This is known as the Betz limit.

Practically, wind turbines' efficiency cannot exceed the Betz limit since not 100% of the wind passing through it can be converted into energy (otherwise, there would be no more wind). The average efficiency of turbines can range from 30%-45%.

The efficiency of a wind turbine can vary depending on:

  • Type of the wind turbine;
  • Structure and configuration;
  • Wind speed; and
  • Air density.

How much money can you make from a wind turbine?

If you are still unsure on whether or not wind turbines are worth your money, this section will help you decide on your future purchases.

So, how much money can you make from a wind turbine? As provided in the calculator's section, you need to know things like the electricity generated by your wind turbine, the electricity tariff as well as the amount of your investment.

This will also highly depend on your location, wind power, and economic situation.

In general, an average-sized wind turbine producing 1 MW, or a megawatt, could generate approximately $480 per day. There are also other factors that could affect your wind turbine income, for instance, the cost of maintenance or investing in turbines with larger capacities.

Fun facts about wind turbines — Biomimicry

Did you know that certain designs of wind turbine blades are inspired by humpback whale flippers?

This picture explains the ergonomics of wind turbine biomimicry of humpback whale flippers.
Source: West Chester University

Outcomes from this wind turbine profit calculator or the profit itself can increase based on the efficiency of each individual wind turbine.

  • How was it built?
  • Where is it placed?
  • How was it designed?

Biomimicry, or the design of things using the ergonomics of nature, is incredibly useful in our technology.

The bumpy structured flippers of humpback whales allow them to swim more efficiently since it decreases countercurrents by allowing more water to pass through the tubercles.

The same goes for wind turbines designed with tubercles-like blades. More power can be generated as more lift or drag forces are received from the wind.

Thanks to the design of nature, our technology could yield a lot more clean energy for our everyday life uses.

Rangsimatiti Binda Saichompoo
Wind turbine profit
Do you know the power generated by the turbine(s)?
Wind turbine generated power
/ day
Price of electricity
$ / 
Wind turbine cost
$ / day
Wind turbine profit
$ / day
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