Micro Wind Turbines

Mini wind turbinesIn urban settings many times it just isn’t practical to install wind turbines in order to harness the energy of the wind. The buildings may not be able to support a large generator or it might be that there just isn’t enough wind. Strange as that sounds, wind turbines won’t work if the wind is too slow. The blades won’t turn. Simple as that. They need at least 20mph winds to be any good. What is an eco conscious urban dweller to do?
The Motorwind might be an answer to some of your power needs. It’s a bank of turbine blades (apx 10" in dia) that are geared together that will generate power in winds of only 7mph (4m/s). That’s a light breeze, just a 3 on the Beaufort scale, and is pretty common. You should be able to get that from just the convection currents coming off from all the cement in the car park next to your office. With one of these Motorwind turbine setups you can charge batteries and power devices directly or with an AC inverter. All in all a good way to get some work out of a nice spring breeze.

The picture below is of the first micro-turbine array set up in Hong Kong. It includes 40 turbines, which has daily production capacity of 960W/h with average wind speeds of 5.5 m/s. This installation was made in November, 2006, and is large enough to power all of the lights in the apartment below.

[via neat-o-rama]

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