NewNergy discusses the latest inventions, innovations and breakthroughs in the energy & environmental sciences.
Portable Charger Harvests Solar and Wind Energy
The device features a solar panel and a fan to recharge the set of batteries, which can then be used to various electronic devices that support USB charging. The device costs $50 and can be purchased online.
See more about the batteries here
Smart Wind Turbines Can Predict the Wind
New Failure-Proof Wind Turbine Technology
It is expensive and hazardous sending workers out to off-shore wind farms for repairs when there is a mechanical failure. By reducing the weight, the researchers reduce mechanical failures, caused by the sheer stresses in these very large turbines.
Their technology substituted a “C” shaped core generator (initially in a 20 kW prototype) to test to see if by changing the mechanical structure of the generator they could still maintain rigidity and structural integrity while cutting the weight by more than half.
The researchers have formed NGenTec; a spin-off company, with the help of Derek Douglas, an entrepreneur familiar with raising money for start-ups.NGenTec hopes to raise £4 million to demonstrate that their improvement will also work full scale; at the 6MW level, and then a further £10 million to set up an assembly and manufacturing operation. The technology would reduce costs for both land-based and off-shore wind farms, while having a more marked effect on repair costs of hard to-get-to locations.
New Generator Design to Make Wind Power Cheaper
A new company, NGenTec, was formed ten days ago to exploit the new design. It is chaired by Derek Shepherd, a former managing director of Aggreko International, a Glasgow-based supplier of mainly diesel-fuelled generators.
The blades of conventional turbines are connected to a generator via a gearbox. In harsh conditions at sea, this is prone to breakdown, leading to costly repairs which themselves are at the mercy of the weather.The alternative is to dispense with the gearbox and connect the blades directly to a generator via an axle.
The institute’s design — through a novel arrangement of the magnets inside the generator and the copper coils that produce electricity as they pass the magnets — has succeeded in cutting the weight of direct-drive generators by up to half and made assembly much easier. A prototype installed on a wind turbine has proved that the design works.
Storing Renewable Energy in Boxes of Air
The goalis to develop a renewable energy storage system with the portability and scalability of a battery and the economy and capacity of a cave. Make that a portable cave.
Over the next two years SustainX will try to develop a way to cram 4 megawatt-hours worth of stored energy into each 40-foot long container and to reduce the energy that it currently takes to compress and release air by about 70%.
Hydraulic Gearless Transmissions for Large Wind Turbines
The technology will be initially demonstrated for a 1.5MW transmission but the Digital Displacement components developed will be directly transferable for multi-megawatt offshore deployment. Digital Displacement Hydraulic Transmission are gearless, making them lighter and lower cost than mechanical transmissions.
Digital Displacement uses different principles to off load unused capacity, in a manner which results in very low parasitic loss and because of the speed this is done, it can be controlled with a high bandwidth with good linearity and low hysteresis.
Waverley Cameron, chairman of Artemis Intelligent Power, said: "The Artemis Digital Displacement technology will provide cost effective solutions to some of the most challenging engineering problems facing the large scale deployment of offshore wind, wave and tidal power generation."
Its Digital Displacement technology has been able to overcome many of the efficiency problems traditionally associated with hydraulics and was originally developed for use on cars as a hybrid system, storing braking energy as hydraulic pressure in an accumulator, which can then be used for acceleration. The system improved fuel efficiency by 40%.
DOE Funds Innovative Energy Research Projects
Some of the innovative projects selected for awards include:
- Liquid Metal Grid-Scale Batteries: Created by Professor Don Sadoway, a leading MIT battery scientist, the all-liquid metal battery is based on low cost, domestically available liquid metals with potential to break through the cost barrier required for mass adoption of large scale energy storage as part of the nation's energy grid. If successful, this battery technology could revolutionize the way electricity is used and produced on the grid, enabling round-the-clock power from America's wind and solar power resources, increasing the stability of the grid, and making blackouts a thing of the past. And if deployed at homes, it could allow individual consumers the ability to be part of a future "smart energy Internet," where they would have much greater control over their energy usage and delivery.
- Bacteria for Producing Direct Solar Hydrocarbon Biofuels: Researchers at the University of Minnesota have developed a bioreactor that has the potential to produce a flow of gasoline directly from sunlight and CO2 using a symbiotic system of two organisms. First, a photosynthetic organism directly captures solar radiation and uses it to convert carbon dioxide to sugars. In the same area, another organism converts the sugars to gasoline and diesel transportation fuels. This development has the potential to greatly increase domestic production of clean fuel for our vehicles and end our reliance on foreign oil.
- CO2 Capture using Artificial Enzymes: The funding will support an effort by the United Technologies Research Center to develop new synthetic enzymes that could make it easier and more affordable to capture carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and factories. If successful, the effort would mean a much lower energy requirement for industrial carbon capture and significantly lower capital costs to get carbon capture systems up and running. Success of this project could substantially lower the cost of carbon capture relative to current, state-of-the-art amine and ammonia based processes. This would represent a major breakthrough that could make it affordable to capture the carbon dioxide emissions from coal and natural gas power plants around the world.
- Low Cost Crystals for LED Lighting: Developed by Momentive Performance Materials, this proposal for novel crystal growth technology could dramatically lower the cost of developing light emitting diodes (LEDs), which are 30 times more efficient than incandescent bulbs and four times more efficient than compact fluorescents. This higher quality, low-cost material would offer significant breakthroughs in lowering costs of finished LED lighting, accelerating mass market use, and dramatically decreasing U.S. lighting energy usage. Lighting accounts for 14 percent of U.S. electricity use.
Kite Power Harnesses Unspooling Motion For Energy
Instead of harnessing wind power to turn blades tethered to a pole, the KiteGen simply harnesses that rapid unspooling motion of kites reeling out as they release upwards. So instead of a heavy static structure this is simply a light and flexible kite.
The KiteGen would hover at 2,600 feet to produce power each time the kite’s tether unspools, spinning an alternator that generates the power. When the cables are completely unwound the production phase ends, the cables are reeled in to start another production phase. The cycle repeats; like in a yo-yo in reverse.
So the KiteGen splits the components of wind power. In the air; nothing but high efficiency air foils. On the ground, all the heavy machinery for power generation. Connecting the two; high resistance lines transmitting the traction of the kite.
The company holds more than 20 international patents and plans a demo by the end of 2010. These guys are thinking out of the box. They point out that there is about a GW of wind potential in the unusable no-fly air space around nuclear power plants. They suggest that’s the perfect spot for their 2,600 foot kite.
Propulsion System for Mobile Offshore Wind Farm Ship
Weighing over 80 tons and measuring approximately 8m high, the Voith Radial Propellers will enable the specialised vessel to sail at approximately 10 knots with a full load. The propeller’s 360 degree steering will allow highly accurate positioning even in difficult sea conditions for a vessel which has a design resembling that of a drilling platform.European construction giant STRABAG SE, which employs 76,000 people and had a turnover of €13.7bn last year, has ordered five such Voith Radial Propellers for the vessel.
The groundbreaking for a trial gravity foundation for offshore wind farms took place in Cuxhaven last week. The project is a step toward the realisation of planned wind farms in the North Sea.Completion of the trial gravity foundation is planned for spring 2010. Series production is scheduled to begin in autumn of next year. Starting in 2011, the first wind turbines for the offshore wind power plant GlobalTech I are to be set up from Cuxhaven.
Affordable Wind Turbines for Commercial and Residential Uses
The system can be mounted on a 30ft pole, and being noise and vibration-free, the turbine can easily be mounted on a flat roof. The system doesn’t have a gearbox, which eliminates the risk of an overheating gearbox causing a fire.
The turbine is mounted on the same shaft as the blades are, which makes the incoming breeze cool the turbine automatically. The highly efficient system can work in wind speeds as low as 2mph to generate power. The turbine is available in different variants which generate power ranging from 1.5KW to 30KW.
DyoCore Launches First Wind/Solar Hybrid Electric Generator
The unit incorporates the latest in thin film transistor solar panels, providing a continuous flow of energy, even with low-exposure to the sun. Furthermore, the company's supplied DC/AC inverter actually recycles unused electricity back into the local grid, dramatically reducing consumer dependency on the nation's power resources, while providing true money savings to environmentally-savvy home owners.
Available in two configurations, 300-watt and 800-watt versions, the SolAir I and II will be available in July 2009 at a suggested retail price of $4,800 for a complete system, including inverter system, high-performance rechargeable batteries and mounting brackets. In many states, the SolAir qualifies for local, state and federal tax credits of up to 80%.
Startup Finds Way to Store Wind & Solar Energy
The appliance can store energy from wind and solar sources, which only generate intermittently throughout the day, for later use. Wind energy generated at midnight could be stored and used in the daytime with similar use for solar energy. Inventor Labs formed Mechanical Electric Inc. in April to focus on marketing the appliance. The company’s plan is to concentrate on “low-tech, mechanical kinds of things” like the Mechanical Electric project, which uses no chemicals or diesel fuel.
Optiwind : A Small But Powerful Wind Turbine?
The Optiwind comes in two models. The first can generate 150 kilowatt and can be used by buildings that spend up to $35,000 a year in electricity while the bigger model can generate up to 300 kilowatt and can be used in conditions that normally would require about $75,000 a year in electricity money.
Eventhough it is an ideal turbine that can be used by schools, hospitals and hotels, according to local zoning laws, we need about 3.5 acres of open land available to get an authorization for the Optiwind. Another problem with this turbine is it generates some noise compared to other turbines.
New Wind Turbine Blades to Improve Electricity Production
The ultimate goal is to feed information from sensors into an active control system that precisely adjusts components to optimize efficiency. The upgrades could help turbines become less likely to lose precious time and energy-producing potential while spinning for nothing when the wind shifts. The sensors will be able to pick up minute variations in wind intensity, and to accordingly adjust the entire structure. It could also provide the controlling software with all the information it needs to move the blades in a manner that will ensure an almost uninterrupted energy production. The system will also be able to prevent the blades from getting damaged by high winds, by alerting them of incoming bursts of air at high speeds.
Wind Energizer: New Design to Increase the Efficiency of Wind Turbine
New Device Makes Green Power from Water & Air
A hydrogen hub would be a power plant that uses water and air to produce a form of ammonia, then burns the ammonia to yield hydrogen energy.Robertson says his invention would trim the need for gas- and coal-fired power plants that contribute to global warming. He envisions a new sustainable industry springing up at abandoned aluminum plants or the former Trojan nuclear plant in Rainier, Ore.
full article here
"Wind Turbine in A Box" Turns Heads in Vegas
The WindTronics 760 produces about 15 percent of a typical residential home's electrical needs and when combined with a "home energy package," including compact fluorescent bulbs, will reduce electric utility bills by 30 percent, the company claims.
Floating Wind Generators With High Rated Capacity
WindWing - A New Wind Power Device
Superconductor Wind Turbines on Their Way
AMSC says the new turbine will leverage “superconductivity’s high power density and enhanced electrical efficiency… rotating machines that incorporate AMSC’s High Temperature Superconductors (HTS) wire can be as little as one-third the weight and half the size of comparably powered traditional alternatives. Reducing their size and weight frees valuable real estate that often can be turned into additional revenue generation or amenities.”
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Wave Treader-A Hybrid of Wave and Wind Power
The system, known as the Wave Treader, comprises sponsons, projections from the sides of a watercraft, for protection, stability, or the mounting of equipment, mounted on the end of arms both in front and behind the turbine’s column vertically mounted on the seabed.
Hydraulic cylinders are attached between the arms and an interface structure and as the wave passes along the device the sponsons and arms lift and fall stroking the hydraulic cylinders.The cylinders pressurize hydraulic fluid which, after smoothing by accumulators, spins hydraulic motors and then electric generators. The electricity is exported back to the shore through the same cables used by the wind turbines.
Quad Wind Turbine Array-Breakthrough in Wind Resource Utilization
Single flow channel at about 2 ½ to 3 rotor diameters downstream, then fully restoring to free stream velocity at just under 5 rotor diameters. This really got our attention, particularly in view of the fact that the CFD study did not consider the effect of counter-rotating swirl. If the turbine wakes can be made to converge quickly, then it is a virtual physical requirement that the opposing swirls will sum to zero, or cancel each other'.
Rooftop Wind Turbine- A New Invention
The invention meets the "simple" criteria: the 3-foot turbine is made from a motor similar to a blender's, mounts directly onto the roof, and gets plugged into an electrical socket. But instead of drawing electricity, it would generate power and deliver it back to the grid.Maglaque says it won't be enough to power an entire house, but could light a home using high-efficiency bulbs.
Wind Energy From Hot Air Balloons
Edmond’s system works by using solar energy to fill a balloon with hot air. The rising balloon pulls a tether, which turns a generator on the ground. Once the balloon has floated up to 3 kilometers, air is released and it loses buoyancy. The balloon needs less energy to be pulled down and a net power gain is reached as a result.
Ultra-Large Scale Vertical Wind Turbine- Will It Work?
His thought is that a 40 foot baffle will increase output by 1200 percent. If the 40 foot baffle system is successful, that means that 1 turbine and baffle system (about $200,000), would have the same amount of power as 12 turbines without baffles (about $150,000 ), so there’s financial efficiency.Eventually, Fuller wants to build a 120 foot model of his turbine. He estimates that it could produce 30,000 to 75,000 kWh—enough for 30 to 70 homes.
World’s Toughest Wind Turbines
The 120m blades are reinforced with carbon fiber to make them as light as possible, and all of the mechanisms needed to change their position are encased to prevent damage from sea air. Additionally, the turbine’s generator and engineering components are hermetically sealed.Areva plans on installing 6 of the 90m tall turbines as part of Germany’s first offshore wind project, located 45km off the island of Borkum.
Vertical-axis Wind Turbine-Breakthrough in Offshore Wind Energy
Project Nova's innovative aerogenerator wind turbine is based on a pair of giant V-shaped composite wings that will be scaled up to 120m high and rotate around the central axis to create power. Invented by David Sharpe and developed by Wind Power Limited, the aim is for a large-scale demonstrator to be installed offshore within six years and for offshore vertical-axis turbines to provide 1GW of power by 2020.
Offshore vertical-axis wind turbines are claimed to offer the potential for a breakthrough in offshore wind energy availability and reduced life-cycle costs due to their inherent design characteristics of few moving parts, insensitivity to wind direction, and the siting of the generator at base level potentially allowing large-scale direct drive. Their relatively low centre of gravity and overturning moments (in the case of Nova's aerogenerator) make the turbines highly suitable for offshore installation. In addition, they are potentially 'radar friendly' compared to existing horizontal-axis wind turbines.
Hubless Windmill – A New Wind Energy Invention
Now Sridhar Condoor at Saint Louis University in Missouri has designed a hollow, cylindrical wind turbine that has no central hub. Its tube-like form means the device could be placed around a pre-existing feature such as a chimney stack, cellphone mast or even a tree trunk.The outside of the turbine is a cylinder that is incised with inlets to catch the wind from any direction and toothed on the inside to drive a gear that powers a generator.
A cylindrical frame within allows the main cylinder to rotate freely and can be mounted around another object - either vertically or horizontally. That makes it possible to install without needing clear space, and could even provide a way to hide ugly features, the patent says.
Is Wind Energy the Most Likely Winner in the Alt Energy Stakes?
1. Solar Energy
2. Wind Energy
3. Biomass and Biofuels
4. Geothermal Energy
5. Tidal & Wave Energy
The first three are indeed where most of the investment and research are going on, though of course geothermal could be a surprise winner.
While on the one hand we might want to derisk alt energy research by not betting on just form of energy, there is a view gaining ground that wind energy might be the single largest source of alternative energy within the next 15 years. Why is this so?
1. It has one of the higest EROI (energy return on input) - about 20, much higher than most other sources
2. It is a well understood form of energy unlike tidal and wave energy.
3. Its contribution to the overall electricity generation worldwide has been increasing tremendously over the past decade years (about 10 GW worldwide capacity in 1998 to 100 GW by 2007!)
4. There are indications that wind could contribute close to 20% of the total electricity in the US by 2020.
5. The cost of wind power is about 10 c per kWh and this could come down further. A few more cents down, and it is competitive with coal-powered grid electricity cost.
Well, if over the next 10 years electric vehicles take off, then wind could become a contributor to transportation energy as well.
I don't have estimates of how much % of world's electricity wind can theoretically supply by 2050, but if it is anything above 30%, I'd bet wind energy to be the biggest winner in this game.
What do you think?
Power from Turbulent Winds
Wind Power: New Techniques to Protect Wind Generators during Voltage Dips
Jesús López Taberna specifically proposed in his PhD thesis two effective protection systems. Both have been patented. The first, only requiring changing the control of the machine converter, has been transferred to a manufacturer for its introduction into wind farms worldwide; the other requires changing elements inside the machine, so it is still in study with the idea to apply it in the next generation of wind turbines.
For more info
Vertical Axis Horizontal Blades: A New Type of Wind Turbine
Wind-to-hydrogen Project about to get Started in North Dakota
"This is really kind of a breakthrough project, using the wind to produce hydrogen," Dorgan said. "It's an exciting conclusion for me to see this project take shape."
Dorgan said the plant, which is about the size of a garage, uses intermittent power from wind turbines to produce and store hydrogen fuel without creating pollution.
The project is a collaboration of Bismarck-based Basin Electric Power Cooperative, the University of North Dakota's Energy and
More from here - Wind-to-hydrogen project about to get started
BroadStar Breakthrough in Low-Cost Energy With New Generation Wind Turbine
Renewable energy from the wind, which previously could only be generated in restricted geographic locations – typically off-shore or in remote rural areas – can now be made available almost anywhere, including urban environments, with the introduction of the AeroCam wind turbine. The AeroCam, developed by BroadStar Wind Systems, was designed and patented for commercial applications. With its parallel rotor blades, not only does it look radically different from conventional propeller designs, but also can be manufactured, transported, installed and maintained at lower cost.
“Wind energy now can be made directly available to everyone,” says Stephen Else, president of Dallas-based BroadStar Wind Systems. “By harnessing its power in almost any setting, the AeroCam can now generate energy close to where it’s actually required. This is a new and exciting product with great potential.” Following four years of research and development and the issuance of
Wind Energy, Wind Turbine Videos @ peswiki
Using Concrete instead of Steel in Offshore Wind Turbine Installation
What’s the holdup? Lots of things. Amongst others, another holdup—building offshore wind platforms means bidding for the same construction materials that are needed for a lot of other things, raising costs and delaying projects.
But there's light on the horizon: concrete instead of steel. At a swoop, that would eliminate the need for pricey steel and all the supporting cast needed to plant it in the seabed. Says New Civil Engineer:
"The project has the dual purpose of reducing industry reliance on steel monopiles for foundations and eliminating the need for the heavy lift ships and jack-up barges typically used during turbine foundation installation. In addition the large hydraulic hammers usually needed for piling are no longer required, further reducing equipment and support vessel hire costs."
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Owens Corning WindStrand Fabric to Reduce Wind Energy Cost
WindStrand™ Allows Longer, Stiffer, Lighter Blades for up to 20 Percent Less Cost Than Other High-Performance Materials Product is First Application of Company's new Stronger, Lighter High Performance Reinforcement Platform, HiPer-tex™ (CSRwire) Owens Corning (OWENQ.OB) announced at the European Wind Energy Conference and Exhibition in Athens, Greece, a breakthrough single-end roving and knitted fabric, WindStrand™, which will allow the wind energy market to take another step forward in competing successfully against other alternative energy sources by reducing the cost per kilowatt-hour (kwh.) The product will allow turbine manufacturers to increase blade lengths by as much as six percent and deliver up to 12 percent more power -- for up to 20 percent less cost than any competing carbon-glass hybrid solution currently on the market.
In addition to the cost and performance benefits of WindStrand, the product also provides manufacturers with the traditional processability of glass, combined with the stiffness strength and weight of other high-performance materials.
Advances in Floating Platforms To Take Wind Farms Off Coasts
Offshore wind-farm developers would love to build in deep water more than 32 kilometers from shore, where stronger and steadier winds prevail and complaints about marred scenery are less likely. But building foundations to support wind turbines in water deeper than 20 meters is prohibitively expensive. Now, technology developers are stepping up work in floating turbines to make such farms feasible.
Several companies are on their way to demonstrating systems by borrowing heavily from oil and gas offshore platform technology. If these efforts succeed, they could open up a resource of immense scale. For example, according to a 2006 analysis by the U.S. Department of Energy, General Electric, and the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, offshore wind resources on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts exceed the current electricity generation of the entire U.S. power industry.
Source: Technology Review
Wind-clocking Anemometers, Weather Stations to Predict Wind Power @ Wind Mills
As wind power becomes more common, its unpredictability becomes more of a problem. Sudden drops in wind speed can send grid operators scrambling to cover the shortfall and even cause blackouts; unexpected surges can leave conventional power plants idling, incurring costs and spewing pollution to no purpose.
To address the problem, power-grid operators are combining hyper-local meteorological data and artificial intelligence to predict when the wind turbines installed on their networks will turn. What makes these modeling systems accurate and affordable is real-time data supplied by the wind farms themselves: wind speed and direction, plus, in many cases, local temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity.
Power-grid operators are using wind-clocking anemometers and weather stations installed at wind farms to predict wind power production hours or days in advance.
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Prof. Seamus Garvey's CAES Stores Wind Power Under Water
The wind's variability has been one of the sticking points for wind power growth in the wind energy market.
The prospects for wind power could be greatly enhanced if cost-effective storage could be implemented. Some, like Minnesota based Xcel Energy, are putting their faith in new battery technology. But a UK professor, Seamus Garvey thinks he might have found another solution -- storing energy in flexible containers on the ocean floor.
Professor Garvey's idea of using Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) isn't a new one, but his methods are. Traditionally, CAES stows energy in a vast underground reservoir. During peak energy hours, air is released powering a turbine, which in turn produces electricity. There are currently only two CAES sites in the world -- in Huntorf, Germany and in McIntosh, Alabama. In a moment of inspiration, Garvey realized that air could be compressed using a wind turbine or a wave-powered device.
The prospects for his energy storage idea with tidal power are perhaps even better. Naturally, storing vast amounts of air requires vast amounts of storage. Professor Garvey envisages a cone-like structure stretching 50 meters wide at the top to around 80 meters across at the base.
Solar Sails to Use Solar Winds for Spacecraft Propulsion
Vertical Axis Windmill Invention
April 26th, 2007 - Alternative Energy Info
Toronto Inventor Tom J. Gilmour recently published his conceptual designs for what he is calling Tom’s Whirligig. Patent applications have been made, and Tom hopes to reserve all rights and worldwide patents for his design. Tom believes his windmill plans to be the most complex ever devised. While he is not yet sure of the workability of this concept, he is optimistic about its feasibility and hopes to soon find the time to build a working model.
This new design is based around a continuously rotating carousel, which houses eight symmetrical airfoils. The entire carousel is mounted on a fixed vertical shaft. A top mounted central weather vane keeps the cam shaft pointed at the wind.
Read more from this report @ Alternative Energy Info
Twirling Tower Could Power Itself, Ten Others
By Hank Green - 13 May 2007
An architect has designed a wind-powered rotating skyscraper. While the technical details of the wind-power system are not fully known, the architect, David Fisher, claims that the tower could power itself and ten other similar sized buildings. Though the claim appears unbelievable, if it is even able to produce just it's own energy, it would be a significant achievement.
The architect has proposed that towers be built in a new way, basically by stacking platters on a central concrete core. This will allow for two unique and awesome features. First, a wind turbine between every floor (see image above) and, second, rotating floors.
Read more from this post @ EcoGeek
455,000 MW of Wind Power by 2016?
The Danish wind power market analysis firm BTM Consult ApS (BTM) released its latest annual market report in late March. Although the press release on the report notes considerable uncertainty in projections beyond 2011, it also states that its projection would lead to total global cumulative installed wind generating capacity of 455,000 MW by 2016. If that amount of wind capacity were installed in the U.S., it could be expected to generate roughly 1.3 trillion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per year (my estimate), or 25% or more of total U.S. electricity supply.
Read more info about this report from here @ Rising Wind
Spain's Wind Energy Generation Exceeds All Other Forms
Spain's wind energy generators this week (Apr 20, 2007) reached an all-time high in electricity production, exceeding power generated by all other means...On a specific point in time this week, wind power generation rose to contribute 27 percent of the country's total power requirement - at that moment wind power contributed 8,375 mega watts to the nation's power consumption of 31,033, nuclear power - 6,797 mega watts and coal-fired electric generation - 5,081
Why is VAWT (Vertical Access Wind Turbine) Struggling?
This blog post @ WindBiz refers to an article in The Economist's Technology Quarterly which has picked up on recent developments in Vertical Access Wind Turbine (VAWT) designs, offering a glimpse at a company that sells equipments, one TMA Global Wind Energy Systems of Cheyenne, Wyoming. Dwelling on the Economist story, the author asks: why has VAWT technology struggled to make it to the mass, industrial scale market, since it's been affirmed time and again as a more reliable and cost-effective design than the current upright tri-bladers (Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine -HAWT)?
The author feels there two broad technical and commercial reasons why VAWT has struggled. One is technical: VAWTs are low to the ground and don't capture the high winds like the 60-80m hub heights of HAWTs. Reason two is commercial: the same old story of technical innovators whose marketing story hasn't been well-banked, well-communicated, nor well-timed....
Read the WindBiz post for more of this discussion
Turbines Could Pose Threat To Birds And Bats
Written on May 10, 2007
Wsls.com reports that a government study shows that the rotating blades on wind turbines could pose a threat to bats, night-migrating songbirds, and some hunting birds. The threat is more pronounced in coastal areas. Scientists recommend further studies on the matter.
Source: Wind Energy Investing
Building-Integrated Wind Turbines for Microwind Energy
January 26, 2007
Blue Green Pacific is a renewable energy company that's working towards making microwind energy generation ubiqitous in the urban environment.
As an intial step, they've installed a small Windside turbine on a San Francisco residence. This is the first residental wind turbine installed in the city.
The heavily monitored, seashell shaped turbine is nearly silent, aesthetically unobtrusive, and does well in turbulent, shifty wind environments...
Read the full post from here @ Green Volts
Dutch firm to roll out US$160 million wind energy project
Namibia Tuesday licensed a privately owned firm to roll out a US$160 million wind electricity generation project, warning the country's energy supply situation had reached alarming levels.
The company, Aeolus Power Generation Namibia, is a 50-50 ownership between Aeolus Association, a Dutch firm, and Namibian firm United Africa Group.
Aeolus Power Generation said it will set up wind turbines in the country's coastal region and generate about 300 MW of electricity yearly starting October 2008.
Read the full news report from here @ Africa News
Indian Govt banks on solar, wind energy to bridge power gap
Times News Network, Apr 26, 2007
NEW DELHI: The Indian government will shortly evolve a feed-in tariff system for wind, solar and other non-conventional sources of energy. This was stated by V Subramanian, secretary at the ministry of new and renewable energy (MoNRE) on Wednesday. Under the feed-in tariff system, solar and wind energy generators will transmit their energy to government-owned grids and help them supply power to starved locations.
Read the full news report from here @ Economic Times
Let's get real about alternative energy
Henry E. Payne, Apr 2007
Wind power is intermittent. Wind and sun only run 8 to 9 hours a day.
Solar energy, with possibilities of up to 30 percent capacity factor, produced only 541,000 megawatt-hours of electricity in 2005. The subsidies for solar power are many times that for wind power simply...The capital cost of equivalent coal or nuclear generating plants is far less than the "alternative power" schemes.
These two (solar & wind) energy sources provided less than .4 percent of all the electricity generated in the U.S. for 2005.
Read more on Henry Payne's take on alternative energy from this interesting article @ Charleston Daily Mail
Environmentalists call for more wind power in Ohio
COLUMBUS, Ohio - New technology is allowing energy producers to capture speedier wind that environmental activists say has the potential to provide 20 percent of the state's electricity within 10 years.
What's new is a taller windmill that can catch gusts that are faster than those closer to the ground.
Rread the full report from here @ Coshocton Tribune
Northwest embraces wind for electricity needs
Blaine Harden, The Washington Post
PASCO - The Northwest is hardly alone as it chases the wind for clean power. Anxiety about climate change and surging demand for electricity have triggered a wind-power frenzy in much of the United States, making it the fastest growing wind-energy market in the world. Power-generating capacity from wind jumped 27 percent last year and is expected to do the same this year.
But it is in the Northwest where wind power, an often capricious source of electricity, meshes most seamlessly with the existing electricity grid, which relies heavily on hydroelectric dams, power managers say
Read more from this news report here @ The Olympian Online
Wave farms show energy potential
By Jason Margolis, BBC
Proponents of clean energy have long seen the oceans as a great hope for the future. Ocean waves carry tremendous power, and could, in theory at least, provide much of the world's electricity.
But while other sources of renewable energy - such as wind and solar - have been widely adopted in recent years, wave energy has been slow to take off.
But that's changing. Scottish engineers will soon deploy an offshore "wave farm" in Portugal, says this detailed news report @ BBC News. Read the full report here
Multi-Million-Dollar Wind Energy Contract In China
23rd March 2007
Windtec has signed a multi-million-dollar wind energy system joint development contract with Sinovel Wind Corporation Limited. AMSC also has a prior delivery right to sell future electrical components under the same conditions as other suppliers to Sinovel for the wind energy systems covered under the contract, creating a substantial follow-on business opportunity for AMSC. Since 2005, Sinovel has ordered electrical components from Windtec for 785 wind energy systems rated at 1.5 megawatts (MW).
Read the entire report from here @ Carbon Free, UK
Wind Energy Sweeping across Western Illinois
By Stephen Elliott
What started with the Erie school district wind energy project has now exploded into a high-demand growth industry...Wind energy is being considered the panacea for all that ills some school districts and municipal governments. It is changing the way people think about future energy costs at hospitals and nursing homes.
It has given rural landowners incentives to lease property to companies seeking to harness wind energy to sell to large power companies. Some landowners are even working with private investors to put single towers on their properties....
Read the full report here @ Quad Cities Online
Wind Energy for US School to Provide Major Savings
March 10, 2007
A major university with a $13.5 million electric bill switches to windpower, saving $2 million a year while helping save the atmosphere.
Baylor University just signed a 10-year contract with WPS Energy of Wisconsin to buy power that will be generated mostly from Texas wind turbines, starting in 2008.
Read more from this news report @ Wacotrib