Large groups of power-generating windmills could have a small but detectable influence on a region's climate, new analyses suggest.
Windmills once were quaint several-story-high mechanisms that pumped water or ground grain. They've since evolved into sky-scraping behemoths that can each generate electrical power for more than 100 homes.
Some modern turbines are 72 meters tall and have rotor blades that are about 25 m long, says S. Baidya Roy of Duke University in Durham, N.C. Future windmills may reach higher than 100 m, and their rotor blades may measure 50 m long, he notes.
All such turbines disrupt natural airflow to extract energy from wind. To investigate potential effects of a wind farm that includes thousands