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Electricity can be generated in many ways. In each case, a fuel is used to turn a turbine, which drives a generator, which feeds the grid. The turbines are designed to suit the particular fuel characteristics. Wind-generated electricity is no different: The wind is the fuel, which drives the turbine, which generates electricity. But unlike fossil fuels, it is free and clean.

The policies and economics of wind energy have played an important role in the development of the industry and contributed to its present success, but the engineering is still pivotal. As the wind industry has become better established, the central place of engineering has become overshadowed by other issues, but this is a tribute to the success of engineers and their turbines.