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Microwind Generator: 30X More Efficient and cheap levitra generic Cheaper!

Popular Mechanics just held its yearly Breakthrough Conference, and one of the winners was the tramadol no prescription next day shipping Wind Belt, an invention we've not seen before. The Wind Belt is a new approach to wind energy production and an innovative approach that could radically change the cost curve downwards, especially within the developing world and in off-grid environments.

Working in Haiti, Shawn Frayne, a 28-year-old inventor based in Mountain View, Calif., saw the need for small-scale wind power to juice LED lamps and radios in the homes of the poor. Conventional wind turbines don't scale down well—there's too much friction in the gearbox and other components. "With rotary power, there's nothing out there that generates under 50 watts," Frayne says.

Having been to Haiti, I think the idea of figuring out affordable renewable power for the developing world is greatly appealing. To alleviate poverty and, well, to help leapfrog the developing world onto a better development path. In the Pop Mech vid, Frayne talks about being originally inspired by a video he saw in high school of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Indeed, if wind can create enough power get that bridge waving like a jump-rope, there must be away to get the power out.

So Shawn built a kind of birdge out of cheap levitra pills taut kite fabric. The fabric vibrates in the wind, and a magnet, attached to the fabric, creates electricity at one end of the device. He says that, in a 10 mph wind, the generator is up to 30 times more efficient than the best rotary turbines.

These are some impressive claims. That much more efficient? But, at what cost? Well, ridiculously cheap. Just some fabric, a magnet and some copper coils does it. Frayne guesses that, for the developing world, the Windbelt could cost as little as a few dollars. It's cleaner, cheaper, and easier to fix than any other method of generating power. That is, as long as the wind keeps blowing.

Not only inexpensive and replacing some of the dirtiest power uses, but something that locals can repair with little problem. Looks like Popular Mechanics might have chosen a real winner. Highly recommended, the Wind Belt video.

Via Jetson Green. And Popular Mechanics

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Comments (85)Add Comment
written by weee recycling, October 12, 2007
What an incredible piece of innovative thinking - potentially; Shawn has a way of taking hundreds of thousands of when will viagra be generic people out of darkness. Fantastic.
Very cool
written by Rob, October 12, 2007
This is really cool. Has he thought of putting a magnet/coil on the link for you buy branded cialis other end as well? or would that destroy the standing wave somehow?
written by jeff, October 12, 2007
What an elegant solution to a very important problem. I agree that we must "help leapfrog the discount viagra india Developing World to a better development path" if we really intend to address the array of environmental problems we face. Much more thinking like this is exactly what we need.
What about...
written by jinks, October 12, 2007
This is an astounding creation on his part, very impressive. But for it to be optimized it must have some sort of wind tracking system so that the edge of the belt remains oriented perpendicular to cheapest levitra online the direction of the wind at all times. Would adding a system of this nature increase the cost too much for applications in areas of buy cialis no prescription poverty where he envisions its use?
Wind Tracking
written by Hank, October 12, 2007
Wind Tracking in a low-cost system is generally just a tail that keeps it oriented in the right direction. It cuts down on efficiency though.
Fantastic Breakthrough
written by Jason Des Forges, October 12, 2007
Posts like this are why ecogeek has become a new favourite of mine. This innovation of Shawn's is enlightening in the best sense.
Wind Tracking [simple]
written by taylor, October 12, 2007
Just use a wind sock or tail like stated above! Truly a great invention! I want to make one.
Rather than a sock
written by Webster, October 12, 2007
A fin mounted on top like an old weather vane would do the trick. More durable and not affected by moisture.
I can't find a single problem with it!!!
written by Eric, October 13, 2007
incredible!! post this everywhere! the video tells all! it's really quite genius... the best hiding place is the most obvious. the only problem is the permanent rare earth magnets. i've seen small ones like that at radio shack for about 3-5 bucks a piece... not too shabby, actually. i imagine one could manufacture thousands of the microwind belts easily, too. can someone get some numbers on electricity production? this is fantastic... i want more.
Rare Earth Magnets
written by Deckard, October 13, 2007
You can get rare earth magnets for about 8 cents a piece here:
Prior Art
written by Ted Stern, October 13, 2007
Very prior, and quite artful:

He's essentially taken an established string instrument and gone from acoustic to electric.

Cute idea.
written by H, October 13, 2007
Why wouldn't this work underwater as well?
Test This underwater
written by H, October 13, 2007
Why wouldn't this work underwater as well?
I am sure the same flux from deepsea current could be culled to vibrate a string?
written by James, October 13, 2007
Do people here remember the trick where you place a blade of grass between your thumbs and blow through the gap created to make a loud whistle? Blow too hard and nothing happens, blow too soft and nothing happens. Yes it's very cool, but development and usage will still have some real set backs, some of which may well be cost restrictive but more importantly very location restrictive. The force of the wind has to be very consistent.
wind speed
written by vvl, October 13, 2007
The force of the wind is a factor, but this can be fixed by adjusting the tightness of the string. One probably can't create a "self-adjusting" string cheaply, but at least some sort of dial or switch would make this invention more flexible to changes in the wind speed.
claims of efficiency are nonsense
written by Jacques Mattheij, October 13, 2007
the best turbines extract power from the wind in the 20...30% range, limited by what's known as 'betz' limit after the man who did the math on i use it get viagra in canada that. If this device is 30x as efficient that would mean it gets more power from the wind then there is in it.

Betz' law states that you can extract a maximum of viagra online in canada 59.3% of the power from the wind, with diminishing returns as you start to buy cialis canada get closer to the optimum.

In order to remove power from the wind you have to slow it down, so you can't get past that theoretical limit.

Betz' law does not only apply to rotary devices but to *ANY* device getting power from the wind.

For more information please see:'_law
written by Thomas, October 13, 2007
Quite amazing. A real innovator. Finally a piece of news that is not "2 years away from the marketplace", if you catch my drift..
RE: claims of efficiency are nonsense
written by Jacques F, October 13, 2007
To the other Jacques: Betz' law is for the ideal wind driven generator. As stated in the article and video, current generators do not scale well. While a 30x improvement on a 300-foot-tall-50%-efficient-half-million-dollar generator running a small village is truly impossible it's very possible to improve on the few percent that small and buy cialis online no prescription cheap generators give you.
More power to Shawn Frayne. Way to make the cheapest generic viagra in uk world a better place to live in smilies/smiley.gif
Great idea, let's move it forward
written by johnjohn, October 13, 2007
I'd expect the efficiency statement is referring to a turbine operating for the same windspeed and scale.

Good luck finding any turbines that have a cut-in speed that low and are anywhere near 20-30% efficiency. Max at 5-10% (if you're lucky) for very small scale turbines. Though admittedly 30x still seems a bit high when considering this, curious to see some experimental data.

Fantastic synthesis of concepts nonetheless, how many engineers have had to sit through a video of the Tacoma Narrows collapse in their vibrations analysis course and didn't make the connection towards energy generation? I know I didn't.

re: the underwater idea, it would be totally dependent upon the scale factors used for the wing, as well as the velocity of the water. You'd have to get the Reynold's number correct (ratio of the fluid's inertial forces vs. its viscous forces), which may or may not be possible given the viscosity of water and the realistic speeds and structure sizes you could expect to be achievable. Worth running some calculations on though!
Directional tension adjustment
written by Dustin, October 13, 2007
Actualy controling the tension of the band and keeping the generator aimed into the wind can be acomplished in the same device. Picture an air tail shaped like a wedge placed lower out in front of buy cialis on line the device ------/
WIND ------
As the wind pases the wedge it will orientate the generator into the wind and cialis in australia for sale as the wind does this it creates force on the wedge this force can be set to adjust tension on the band, the stronger the wind the more the force "tension" coming from the wedge.
Simple mechanical control that takes absolutely nothing from the generator its self... and is completly self regulating..... smilies/smiley.gif
And yet still very simple in design / repair..
written by Clown Soup, October 13, 2007
Jacques writes: "If this device is 30x as efficient that would mean it gets more power from the wind then there is in it. "

And common sense says that you can't sail a boat faster than the wind, but it's done every day.
blade of grass whistle or harp... = nois
written by Charles Wood, October 13, 2007
I've seen this annoying effect on my boat. The straps which hold the fabric canopy in place will vibrate as the boat speed increases.

The noise is quite loud... the solution is
to add a couple twists to online pharmacy no prescription cialis the flat strap, reattach and the vibration is eliminated.

These "wind belts" will need to be situated nearer to mountain tops and out of ear shot to be tolerable.
common sense is not common
written by Jacques Mattheij, October 13, 2007
and going faster than the wind is perfectly intuitive if your intuition is located in a brain that has a basic understanding of physics. Getting more power out of a device than goes in to it is not an option. A sailboat extracts only a small fraction of the power available in the wind.
written by Riaz Rana, October 13, 2007
Shawn admire your keen observation ability which has been main factor for some great Nobel Laureate to discover their discoveries. You are on a path of great future and my article about Post Secondary Education availability for any capable student free of cost would
be a national asset. Proud of you and good luck.
Ribbon/Magnetic coil microphone
written by Jerry Benoit, October 13, 2007
I think you might be interested to see another application of this principle of cheapest cialis uk vibration to cheap levitra prescription electricity. It is the same way a microphone takes a sound vibration and converts it to energy. Google it... I am surprised someone did not think of this application before, but 3 cheers fot Mr. Frayne
What about elasticity longevity ?
written by Dom De Vitto, October 13, 2007
How long does the visit our site buying generic viagra belt last for?
- being elastic, it'll become less efficient over time.

(Obviously they are cheap, but human maintenance isn't)
Adjusting for wind direction
written by Jim eslinger, October 13, 2007
How about orienting the belt vertically? Seems to me that no adjustment for wind direction would be required at all.
Interesting, but a fan is a lot of wind
written by BlogReader, October 13, 2007
Good on him for inventing it, however I'm not sure if it is very practical. How much more powerful is that simple electric fan than wind found in nature?

Also how constant is the vibration? Because if it varies a lot the frequency of the AC power coming out will need to be synced to 60 hertz.
just my 10 cents
written by panpan, October 13, 2007
Doesn't he say 10x as efficient, anyways?
Just wondering. Nice idea, but i wonder....

Oh, and going faster than or even against the wind is perfectly intuitive, but going with the wind AND exceeding it's speed at the same time, clearly is not.
Otherwise, the America's cup would already have reached offshore boat speeds smilies/cool.gif.

But I wondered about the noise, too. The device seems pretty quiet. If it isn't mute, put it in the water for more suicidal whales or have a nice buzzing natural resort...environmentally friendly if You will.

Ah, and for a conclusion, the vibration WILL scale with the length of the belt, so span it across a canyon, and You'll have a superloud vibro-canyonkiller. The women will love it smilies/wink.gif
Wind Directing Device?
written by Tom, October 13, 2007
Why not mount a wind directing device onto it with some filters in the windiest area to force the wind into a constant maximum efficient speed for thousands of microwind generators in one spot that doesn't need to move? Like, a wind tunnel? One of those CPU fan ducts?
written by Dr Robotnik, October 13, 2007
written by Paul, October 13, 2007
The folks in the Steorn forum will have a blast with this.
great idea makes me think of the Tacoma
written by joe dudpont, October 13, 2007
seems like a winner. fatigue, vibration , noise?
but the concept is neat.. and most likely very safe for bird and humans.
This invention reminds me of this accide
written by joe dupont, October 13, 2007
On November 7, 1940, at approximately 11:00 AM, the first Tacoma Narrows suspension bridge collapsed due to wind-induced vibrations. Situated on the Tacoma Narrows in Puget Sound, near the city of Tacoma, Washington, the bridge had only been open for traffic a few months.
Add some engineering to it
written by Arturo Galletti, October 14, 2007
Pretty cool Idea. If he combined it with a windvane rig and some solar cell and litium ion batteries could he provide consistent power. Would be cool to prototype.
written by Dustin, October 14, 2007
Very interesting concept, but I see a few problems with it being useful:

The largest range of motion is at the center, the magnet, for harmonic reasons, must be near an end so as not to dampen the motion. But, this places it in a location that is not moving very far, thusly, low output. How much this can be offset by the speed it moves is relevant, but it would have to be ridiculous to offset the distance losses of magnetic induction as a flux cutting benefit....

If applied in a larger scale tho, the real problem with become evident. Noise. Current radial turbines are damn silent, in spite of the false claims of those opposed. Scale this design up, and the oscillations will decrease. Not to mention the volume of wind needed to operate it will also be larger. This results in

1) needing a hurricane just to make it work

2) incredible fleet-of-semi-trucks-down-shifting-simultaneously-in-your-front-yard kind of noise.

Notice how he used a fan to operate it. If it were truly functional, why didn't he stick it out the window and just run the wires inside?

It's a very interesting idea, and the first unique design I've seen; pretty much ever. And definitely the most brains I've seen displayed in the area of extracting energy from the wind in a long time.

But being unique does not equate to being useful. Such a simple and eloquent design makes me wish it did. But it doesn't.
written by Joel, October 14, 2007
Has he thought of putting a magnet/coil on the other end as well? or would that destroy the standing wave somehow?

Any energy that's available at one end will be available at the other, too. It would work, but there's no reason to double the complexity that way.
How long does the belt last for?
- being elastic, it'll become less efficient over time.

In the video, the inventor uses "elastic" in the technical sense, meaning "no permanent shape change". That means it will keep working the same way. The elastic band in your underwear is technically not elastic, it's viscoelastic, which might be part of the misunderstanding.
How about orienting the belt vertically? Seems to me that no adjustment for wind direction would be required at all.

That would be a good idea, but not for the reason you think. Wind is stronger higher up, and it will have access to more energy if its average distance from the ground is increased by half the length of the device. But the edge of the belt has to face the wind for it to work, or, more accurately, the edge has to flutter across the direction of the wind with every oscillation. Orienting it vertically would actually make it more sensitive to wind direction, but, as others have already mentioned, it's easy to add a pivot and a tail.
written by gene, October 14, 2007
anyone have any measurements on output of wattage/amperage for a certain size/material/magnet type?
"need a hurricane"
written by anthony, October 14, 2007
Im with Dustin on this one. Its a great idea and all, but you would need some incredible wind speeds to make it work. I too have seen this with tie-down straps on cars and boats, but that is at speeds of at least 30mph. There are few places where wind is consistently blowing at 30 , and where it does, people don't live.

So its a great idea, but wont work with common daily breezes. Perhaps a wind funnel/Kort nozzle to increase velocity?
The same effect can be seen in water.
written by voxelman, October 14, 2007
Has anyone else experienced the hum that gets set up in a canoe paddle when moving the paddle forward in the J-stroke? The hum can be intense enough to cause nearby fish to jump out of the water. This hum has the same basic causes as the vibration that is being setup in the belt of fabric by air. In both cases this occurs when the variables such as fluid viscosity and speed of flow combine with the belt length, tension, width, etc. and random initial conditions support oscillation. So yes this can also occur in water.
Use Piezo materials as the electrical ge
written by voxelman, October 14, 2007
A possible refinement to this device would be to use a piezo element at the end of the belt as the electrical generating mechanism. It may not be as efficient as the coils and magnets but it is structurally much simpler. This mechanism is used in reverse as a fan to provide localized cooling. See:
written by Clovis, October 14, 2007
I live in an apartment building with 26 apartments & the roof is only accessible by building staff. After reading this article I envisioned about 100 of these little devices on the roof of my building. Take the power (these amazing little things) generate and somehow send it to a “battery room” to draw off power when needed. Now imagine these things on roofs everywhere…

I wonder..
written by Mike, October 14, 2007
Just wondering if this could be used to extend the reange of an all electric car - even if if only generates enough to light dash lights or other small loads.
no, that won't work
written by Jacques Mattheij, October 15, 2007
because the power to vibrate the 'belt' would have to come from the headwind of the vehicle, which would see increased drag. In fact you'd only lose power because the conversion from 'headwind' to electricity is going to be significantly less than 100%.
written by Jim, October 15, 2007
Anyone know what the coil was made of? ( Was it salvaged from something else or homemade? ) If homemade, what is the recommended number of turns etc?

The more of us that duplicate it and experiment with it the better.
written by Joe, October 16, 2007
I wouldn't mind seeing some plans for that, too. It looks so simple to make, and I'd really like to try one out for myself.

Besides that, it seems like one of those great inventions that are so simple that you wonder why no one else thought of it before.
Water and Noise
written by Dan Roscoe, October 18, 2007
I too think this application could be applied to water as well as wind. I live near the Bay of Fundy, with the highest tides in the world, and the underwater turbine technology still causes concern for aquatic life. This may solve that problem

My concern is that that in air, that it may cause a noise irritation, but i imagine it would certainly be tollerable with smaller applications.
written by clay, October 20, 2007
so my first thought was, why don't we (we being anyone, everyone) build like 10000 of these things and set them up in a big wall somewhere windy, maybe two devices thick, u get the idea? or what if every home had a small array of like 25 of these?
probably not the holy grail of energy, but its really freakin awesome still
written by Jon, October 21, 2007
I hate this kind of crap, 30 times more efficient than a conventional wind turbine, says who!?!? Asserting a figure does not make the figure true or accurate; this is utter rubbish!

Convention wind turbines are very efficient when compared to their limit (the Benz limit) and making one 30 times more efficient would extract more energy from the wind that was there to extract.......

It is an interesting idea, i am fine with that (though I do wonder if he is solving a problem which does not exist) it is the bull**** figures presented with it; come on, lets see your maths, where did you get "30 times more efficient" from.
More info
written by Rick L, October 21, 2007
Some additional information about the basic technology and what Frayne is up to can be found here.
written by be free, October 22, 2007
What market are we talking about? 3rd world market, and the need for inexpensive, small scale units for meager needs. Maybe a light in the kitchen, a fan, something that is better than nothing. OK. So forget the documented efficiency of the most advanced mega-scale turbines.

Now, produce a turbine small and cheap enough for above mentioned 3rd world usage - it will have x price, and y efficiency. Then, take the featured invention, and compare its price and energy output and compare it to the above mentioned mini-turbine. Does it still sound inconceivable that it can be 30 times more efficient, taking price AND wind effect into consideration?

I actually have no idea myself, but taking into the considerations the far more complicated mechanics that a mini-turbine must have, it sounds reasonable to me.
Just posted videos from Breakthrough Con
written by Cat Laine, October 22, 2007
I just posted some videos from the Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Conference over at the AIDG Blog that may answer some of the readers additional questions.,com_jd-wp/Itemid,34/p,819/
its good, BUT
written by Patrick, October 22, 2007
Well, it is quite a nice piece of innovation, ubt it lacks something. Useability... That is because this kind of generator only works with a specific speed of wind, thereby it is not able to capture a whole lot of energy in real life, because wind usually comes with a constant speed....
But still it is a nice thing to be produced
written by Patrick, October 22, 2007
I meant doesn't come... ^^
written by Phoenix Woman, October 24, 2007
How many of the snipers here actually read the article all the way through? The author states that while turbines are fine for large-scale applications, they don't work as well for smaller ones - such as, say, isolated third world farmsteads.

That's where this microwind generator comes in. Cheaper than a turbine, easier to maintain, what's not to like?
Magnetic film
written by Geenimetsuri, October 28, 2007
Why not use magnetic film instead of kite material?

That way you could eliminate the magnet and use the whole belt for energy production.
written by dbking, October 30, 2007
i think that by saying its x30 more efficient it means its x30 times closer to the betz' limit than regular turbines.
written by London Pat, November 12, 2007
How lonog before some big corp patents it and closes the door on those poor Haitian's nose?
written by WestfW, November 29, 2007
y'all are missing the point. He's not claiming 30x more efficient than "the best wind turbines." He's claiming 30x more efficient in a low-power output region where conventional turbines are NOT efficient. (say, less that 5W output? The claim was also that there aren't ANY commercial wind turbines at under 50W...)
written by puttputt, December 17, 2007
to make electricity from this contraption. DUH!
Where can we get one of these cool thing
written by margee, December 21, 2007
We live out here where the wind goes whistling down the plains.... Where can we get something like this or find plans to make something like it? We are not engineers or scientists but good with our hands and want to make a difference in our own energy consumption. Margee smilies/kiss.gif
written by jallalaa, December 28, 2007
It is entirely possible for something like this to be 30x as efficient as a rotary turbine of the same size. It has been mentioned that large scale wind turbines are quite efficient but what is missing from the statement is that on small scales the efficiency suffers due to the friction from the various moving parts. This is the barrier that makes small-scale wind projects particularly difficult.

written by jallala, December 28, 2007
In that comment above I was referring to a project of a comparable scale...not "the same size."
written by bobby, January 07, 2008
smilies/sad.gifthis article is point less why tell us about the energy instead of doing it you stupid idoits
a few questions
written by Cory, February 01, 2008
Does anyone know how meny times this has to vibrate to create the energy to light the L.E.D and how wide the vibrations have to be?
Another option is...
written by MikeA, February 26, 2008
I am not sure of the practicallity, but you could create one of these wind belts using a steel wire strung tight between two points. The steel wire could be magnetized by simply attaching it to the wire at one end. That would create a power output as the entire length of the wire vibrates. To be sensitive to low wind speed the wire length would have to be longer than the original prototype. The wind direction is no longer a major factor.
written by Floyd N. Best Sr., February 28, 2008
Stop Hate N, And Help This Sharp Young Man Make A Better Idea Even Better.
does 40mW save even the poorest any mone
written by Shawn, March 04, 2008
According to one of the pages on Mr. Frayne's windbelt, current tabletop prototypes yield 40mW. At $0.20 US per kWh, 40mW running at 50% capacity factor (very generous) for a year yields $0.035 worth of electricity. Still, that's about 30 AA batteries. So, it might be better than buying batteries, until you figure that a more reasonable capacity factor for a low-to-the-ground wind device will probably have a capacity factor of 10%, thus yielding only 6 batteries worth of electricity a year.
Reminder, this is micro-generation, and
written by JasonD, March 29, 2008
He is only partially correct... There are no "Micro-generation manufactured items.", they are not manufactured as "Micro-generators". However, there are micro generators that are under $2.00, which, oddly enough, his creation is NOT under $2.00.

Permanent rare earth magnet $0.50 manufactured cost. Copper coil wire $0.10 bulk. Mylar film with industrial grade strength $0.05, Metal tensions, bridge, and wire-mount $0.50, Epoxy for magnet attachment $0.08, Regulator for generated power $8.80, Labor of construction, packing, and sales, $12.50. Final cost, well over $22.00 for completion. (No to mention, it is not complete... Directional tail, structure mount, noise reducer...)

The cheaper alternative, already exists, as a "Turbine". It is called a CPU fan. Which actually generates more power than this device.

This "Grass-reed" generator, has no power. It has high harmonic voltage. It can not generate more than 0.1 watts, or the magnet would simply stop in mid-air, while the rest of the device continued to humm in the wind. The more it generates, the more resistance it creates. The more resistance, the more power is needed to combat that resistance.

Led-lights, can run off an air-watch-battery for months. So can a radio and a clock. For $20 dollars, he just made the worlds most expensive watch-battery.

Cute, but hardly an innovation. This is just like using a gravity pendulum as a generator. We already have those, and have for years.

Actually, the CPU fan is a more efficient and cheaper generator.

This reed generator could make a cheaper "Mass-air-flow-sensor" for cars. Though, I am not sure how reliable it would be, using plastic that will dry-rot in one year, in the sunlight and with moisture.
written by Barry, April 01, 2008
Some here will think I’m mad but heck ate we all…
Anyway I use an 24v electric mobility scooter to get around and have been looking at ways to prolonging the battery life for grater distance wile I’m traveling along or re-charging wile the Scooter is stationery, my first thought was to use small wind mill generators to trick-all feed the batteries but a friend of mind pointed this amazing innovative “Wind Belt” out to me and I have to say its got me thinking…

You may ask why? Well look at it this way with a 24v electric mobility scooter you are limited on the miles you can cover after charging the batteries over night generally 8 hours, depending on the size of the batteries the wait of the person using the scooter and the terrain i.e. on the flat or on hills to the distends you can cover, my scooter covers 25 to 30 miles,
That may well do most people to go shopping and pay the bills but what if you won’t to go for a long drive though the county side witch I like to do because I do Photography,
I dote drive a car so I’m limited to where I can go but if it was possible too trick-all feed the batteries wildest on the move or re-charging wile stationery…
Anyone with thoughts on this would be nice to here…?
R&D Engineer SASE Co., Inc.
written by Michael Estes, April 22, 2008
Mr Frayne has come up with an interesting innovation,
however, though I do admire the effort, it isn't very original.
In the late 60' the fellows at The Windworks in Mukwnago, Wisconsin (originators of the Gemini Inverter for tieing their wind generators to the power grid) came up with the same concept and investigated it quite extensively. Their prototype was perhaps 4 times the size of Mr Frayne's device. It was tested with a number of different electromechanical means of generation by placing it in the bed of a pickup and driving at various speeds. They also discussed, I believe, the possibillity of using piezeo crystal(s) for the generation means. Although the device worked well and had as good an efficiency as their rotary wind machines, they soon realized that the approach is rather limited. Wind power is dependent upon the area of collection, so to speek. That is the area thru which the wind moves. In the case of the familiar turbines of today it is the disc area - in others such as the Darrious and Savonious (sp?) it is a differently shaped area but still the area in wich the device may capture the wind.
In the case of this vibrating reed machine the area is that between the extremes of travel of the vibrating member ------ quite small.
The one comment above about a small perm mag fan such as a chip cooler being able to generat more power and perhaps more ecconomically is probably valid.
For sure a small model airplane prop. attached to a cheap little pm slotcar motor would beat the pants off it.
written by Caroline Arnold, May 23, 2008
Could a wind belt generator be mounted on a bicycle? to provide a light, or charge camera or radio batteries?
Capture the wind.
written by Michael Horrigan, June 27, 2008
Clearly none of you understand the Benz math and it's limits and how it in no way applies to this device. In short the wind is creating vibrations as the band moves this creates more surfaces and more vibrations. In short you are still thinking wind hitting a wall at a speed and wall and this force as 100%. This probably explains the reason that none of you invented this.
As far him using a fan, I seen this close up and like many wind products it does need wind to work, but here is the real advantage. The faster the wind the better the ouput, no breaks needed when the wind gets to hard! Also placing this in the grill or better yet in small tube that could pass thru the bottom of the car( think Jet afterburners) of car would add no addtional drag and would be a great way of recharging ion batteries. Look at a Nascar and look at the bottom front close, that is not drag it pushes the car closer to the ground to reduce drag.
written by errupt, August 31, 2008
I think it would work great on a car or boat. The faster you go the more electricity you make. even if you are costing down hill. I think I will put one on my bicycle and connect it to the lights.
The issues that your comments have cited
written by Evan Ralston, December 25, 2008
1. For ORIENTATION, use a wind-vane.

2. For the OUTPUT problem, these things would obviously need to be constructed in arrays. (ie, a whole bunch of these things wired together)

3. For the COST problem, as they scale so well, shipping and installation are cut _way_ down, compared to turbines, and probably a couple orders of magnitude cheaper to manufacture. Mass-produced, the costs-per-unit come WAY down.

4. For the LOCATION problem, measure the wind at the specific location for X amount of time, then install arrays including variably-tuned ribbons which maximize the energy generated (or balance this against energy availability) for the specific locale. (presuming that differently sized and strung ribbons respond more efficiently to different velocities of wind)

5. Installing any kinetic-energy capturing device on a moving vehicle is inherently less efficient than not doing it (drag/energy loss, cost, weight, maintenance).

Much love to the developing world here and all, but the problems to be solved here are relatively straight-forward engineering ones:

To bring the total cost of ownership (manufacture install maintenance cost for land) divided by the energy produced, to be greater than wind turbines, which is the reigning champ right now.

P.S. For those getting hung up on "10x more efficient", maybe he meant "10x less INefficient compared to wind turbines in relation to Betz law". Whatever. The real efficiencies are to be made in the costs to manufacture / ship / install / maintain.

This is neat. Let's try to be constructive in our responses.
written by BGolden, July 23, 2009
while technically elegant, economics based on the limited public info looks poor - the Pop Mech data indicates 40 milliWatts for $2 - works out to just over $16,000,000/kiloWatt compared to about $15,000/kW for home sized installed windturbines and sub$4,000/kW for the commercial windfarms.
Ribbon Generator Balloon
written by Ray, August 06, 2009
Use an anchored high altitude balloon to mount the ribbon generator vertically to take advantage of the higher velocity winds at higher altitudes. Glue two ribbons over plastic tubing used to keep the balloon filled with gas.
written by odboy24, August 28, 2010
All long as it doesn't turn out to be total bullshit like that gravity lamp hoax, it could be a great idea.
written by Green Blog, September 06, 2010
Could a wind belt generator be mounted on a bicycle? to provide a light, or charge camera or radio batteries?
written by led light, November 19, 2010
The cheaper alternative, already exists, as a "Turbine". It is called a CPU fan. Which actually generates more power than this device.

This "Grass-reed" generator, has no power. It has high harmonic voltage. It can not generate more than 0.1 watts, or the magnet would simply stop in mid-air, while the rest of the device continued to humm in the wind. The more it generates, the more resistance it creates. The more resistance, the more power is needed to combat that resistance.

led light, can run off an air-watch-battery for months. So can a radio and a clock. For $20 dollars, he just made the worlds most expensive watch-battery.
Small Electric Generators.
written by Brett Rodgers, December 13, 2011
I love our little small electric generator that we have its so nice to have in the house.
No loss of poser required
written by G.W.North, January 10, 2014
A comment was made that if an orienting tail were added to the generator, it would cause a loss of efficiency. I submit that it would not cause a loss of efficiency as the tail could be placed on the downwind side of the device. You would simply attach the generator to a platter, that was connected to an anchoring pole, with ball bearings to minimize friction, and attach a trailing wind vain to the top center of the generator housing. This would create very little air current loss to the vibrating belt, and keep the device oriented in the wind.
Little efficiency loss from orienting vein.
written by G.W.North, January 10, 2014
Simply attach a suitable, low weight wind vein to the generator top housing. Mount the generator onto a platter that sits on a ball bearing housing to minimize rotational friction. Air current would be minimally disrupted to the vibrating belt, if at all. There would be negligible loss of efficiency.
i need a microgenerator
written by Alose Ben, March 22, 2014
hi guys i need a micro generator so that i can use it in my msc project. where can i get it. i want to use it to test a small wind generator system.

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