In this paper, a new algorithm, difference equation matrix model (DEMM), in the framework of model predictive control (MPC) is introduced. Instead of the standard dynamic matrix control (DMC), which is based upon step response method that has been used in most research works, we propose a new approach based upon a DEMM for model prediction. It has shown that DEMM has proven to be less computational and thus faster than the original DMC for real time applications. Thus, the drawbacks of DMC for online identification or adaptive design could be avoided. The control of wind turbines is carried out in order to decrease the cost of wind energy by increasing the efficiency, and thus the energy capture, or by reducing structural loading and increasing the lifetimes of the components and turbine structures. Modeling of wind turbine has been carried out. Effect of noise and disturbance on the system has been also studied. The results obtained show that the proposed DEMM minimizes the effect of the disturbance and produces an accurate and smooth control. Significant improvements in the regulation of rotor speed at high wind speeds are obtained from the proposed DEMM, where control set points are obtained ahead of the disturbance, saving the turbine of the negative effects of them and thus increasing its lifetime. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.