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Wind Power

Novel Barrel Turbine Wins $34,000 Grant

Graeme Attey, already a little bit famous as the inventor of a two-wheeled, wind-powered "dirt surfer," has just taken his inventing skills to a new (and more useful) level. This roof-top wind turbine is small, cheap, quiet and sits at the peak of the roof-line in order to capture wind at it's maximum speed.

Mr. Attey has been awarded a AU$34,000 grant from the government of Australia to develop the technology and make it suitable for use across windy Western Australia. Another $28,000 was awarded to a scientist to determine the ideal placements for such small-scale residential turbines.

At only AU$700 a piece, these turbines are definitely the cheapest option we've seen in small wind. And though they don't have an enormous generating capacity, they are designed to be used in series. So, an average household could install as many as six of these turbines on their roof, while selling all of tramadol 200 mg tablets their excess electricity back to lowest price for cialis the electric company.

The only issue, of course, is whether home-owners will be willing to add these clunky barrel turbines to their roof. But if Western Australia really wants to reduce it's greenhouse emissions by 60% in 40 years, they're going to have to make compromises. Besides its somewhat cumbersome appearance, these turbines look to me like a very promising advancement in suburban energy generation.

Video After the Jump.

Via Metaefficient

See Also:
-Big Ideas in Small Wind-
-Shape-Shifting Personal Wind Turbine-

Floating Off-Shore Wind Rig Based on Oil Rig Technology

What are the three biggest problems with wind power? Anybody, anybody, Bueller?

1. Bird Kill, 2. NIMBYism and 3 Dead bugs gumming up the works. Now, I'm not saying that these are always legitimate concerns, but migration corridors should be avoided and some people just really don't like the way wind turbines look. These are real problems, so we've got to find real solutions.

How about we put wind turbines in a place that is literally no one's back yard, there are no bugs, and where birds only go to die. Namely, 50-100 miles off-shore. The big problem, of course, is that there's no way to anchor wind turbines into the sea-floor if the buy cialis online online a href sea-floor is 300 meters down (as it is when you get that far off shore.)

Why is why Norsk Hydro has been working on a prototype floating off-shore wind rig called the Hywind. Norsk Hydro's off-shore wind expertise comes directly from their experience with off-shore oil rigs. And now that off-shore oil is less interesting to Norway, Norsk Hydro happily developing this awesome new technology.

A pilot project with three 3 MW turbines will be installed before the beginning of 2008. But future plans call for larger farms with hundreds of 5 MW turbines producing as much as 4 terrawatt hours per year, or roughly enough to power 200,000 households.

More pics after the jump.

Via Inhabitat and Norsk Hydro

See Also:
-World's Largest Offshore Wind Project-
-The AeroGenerator-

New Shape-Shifting Personal Wind Turbine

Ben Storan just won first prize in BSI's 2007 Sustainability awards for his design for a shape-shifting, vertical axis personal wind turbine.

The device works very much like the Quiet Revolution wind turbines. The design is cheapest prices for viagra cialis levitra less efficient than Quiet Revolution turbines, but much more efficient than other turbines marketed toward homeowners. Plus, this new way of building turbines has other advantages as well.

First, the simplicity of Storan's design will bring down the costs significantly from other similar personal turbines. Though, were still looking at a fairly expensive energy appliance.

Second, Storan's turbine can change shape, much like an umbrella, so that it produces the maximum amount of electricity at a wide range of wind speeds and can also be folded up, much like an umbrella, during extremely strong winds. Other turbines have to be locked in place, or even taken down during severe storms.

Beyond Ben's £3,000 award, we can hope that he'll begin marketing and selling the design for big bucks in the viagra 24 hour delivery uk near future.

Via TreeHugger and BSI

See Also:
-Loopwing Personal Wind Turbine-
-Big Ideas in Small Wind-

Oil Tycoon Planning World's Largest Windfarm

T. Boone Pickens wants to build the largest wind farm in the world. You might assume that with a name like T. Boone Pickens, this guy would be some kind of buy levitra on line oil tycoon.  Funny thing is, you'd totally be right.

You know wind power has made it big when Texas oil moguls start getting into the business. And, of course, everything is bigger in Texas.

Pickens' wind project will stretch over 200,000 acres in four Texas panhandle counties and produce over 4000 megawatts of power...enough to power around one million homes.

Of course, these plans don't always become reality, but the prospect of a four gigawatt $6 billion solar plant is pretty freakin' exciting. If approved, the plant would begin construction in 2010. And that may be the first time in my life saying "Thanks" to an oil tycoon.

Via BusinessWeek

WINDPOWER 2007: Industry Taking Bird Kill Seriously

They pretty much have to, thanks to coal-state congressman Nick Rahall (D - West Virginia) who, concerned that the occasional deadly intersection between birds and wind turbines constitutes "a violation of the Migratory Bird Act and the Endangered Species Act," and so is pushing legislation that would seriously curtail the generation of wind energy in the United States. (Never mind that Audubon Society president John Flicker has given the just try! overnight viagra wind industry his blessing, saying that while we can measure how many birds are killed in wind turbines every year the number killed by coal-fired power plants is almost impossible to count.)

In any case, having attended the American Wind Energy Association's annual conference this year, it seemed clear that the industry was taking the issue seriously (despite the fact that house cats kill more birds each year than wind turbines -- a few hundred million more).

The first thing they did was admit responsibility: when they built a wind farm in Northern California's Altamont Pass, says congressman and wind advocate Jerry McNerney, "we had no idea that birds would fly into those windmills. We figured they could see better than us!" To address the problem, AWEA president Randall Swisher has pledged to create a "wind wildlife institute" which will study the impact of wind technology on birds and bats, and work to find technological solutions to the problem.

But there was evidence on WINDPOWER 2007's exhibit floor that such innovations were already taking place: several companies were marketing new, extra-tall wind turbine towers that not only put rotor blades above the canadian levitra and healthcare flight path of most birds, but take better advantage of high-altitude, higher-velocity windspeeds. Hopefully the industry won't be playing defense on buy viagra on line uk these kinds of issues (or non-issues, as the case may be) for much longer.

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