To reduce the production and installation costs of a wind farm, the Airloom company has imagined a unique system for producing energy using blades suspended on a cable carried by poles.
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In addition to giant wind turbines taller than the Eiffel Tower, many amazing projects around capturing wind to generate energy are underway. There are floating wind turbines in Norway or a giant wall of wind turbines in the middle of the ocean. The company’s project Airloom Energy, in Wyoming, United States, goes even further in originality. Its process, supported by Bill Gates’ financial fund, is designed to minimize costs while increasing efficiency.
Rather than opting for gigantism, Airloom thinks rather small. With a nominal power of 2.5 MW, the installation is based on a sort of oval track made up of 25 meter high poles. The posts are connected together at the top by a cable. On it are suspended fins. With this process, the blades can harvest energy from the wind in any direction. These blades will therefore rotate around this oval track.
An economical wind farm
The longest sides of the latter are oriented into the prevailing wind, so that as many blades as possible can capture the wind. At the ends of this oval, the blades will change direction. With this system, while a wind turbine obtains maximum torque at the tip of the blade and very little at the hub, the length of the system’s blades allows maximum energy to be captured over the entire surface. To install the system, there is no need for huge convoys of trucks or gigantic cranes. According to Airloom’s calculations, the installation price of this wind farm would be 25% compared to the current cost. Likewise, the cost of energy production would be estimated at a third of what it costs today. For the moment, the company has developed small-scale prototypes which are already operational. Initially, the company will create a park with a power of 50 kW to test it on a full-scale basis and upgrade it so that it can reach the planned nominal power.
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