Renewable Energy World has an overview of the growth in size of wind turbines over the past three decades. Early models seem like toys now. However, design and technology is crucial too.
“If you look at what wind turbines survived over the years, it was the ones made in Denmark. That was because of they took a bottom-up approach with farmers and agricultural companies developing them with off-the-shelf components. In California we had two types of wind turbines. We had the Danish pieces of equipment…and the other group of turbines from our [American] aeronautical engineers. And the ones that you see still turning today are the ones by the farmers”, says Paul Gipe, who worked on early turbines.