The alternatives to turbines.
There are a lot of issues around wind turbines:
Not least that the problem of decommissioning:
Although green groups including the RSBP dismiss some of the wilder assertions:
As a correspondent comments, “I worry about much related to turbines but think these look more promising. Here are some things I have come across as alternatives to turbines.”
From Treehugger from September last year:
Bladeless Wind Turbine Could Be 2X as Efficient as Conventional Designs
When it comes to the future of wind power, one company thinks it looks a lot different than you would expect, and cheaper and more efficient to boot. Saphon Energy, out of Tunisia, is interested in finding partners to mass-produce and market their unique wind energy device, based on their own Zero Blade technology.
“The Zero-Blade Technology is largely inspired from the sailboat and is likely to increase the efficiency of the current wind power conversion devices. The blades are replaced by a sail shaped body while both hub and gearbox are removed.”
2.3 Times More Efficient
According to the company, their zero-blade technology devices are capable of overcoming the Betz’ limit, which states that no turbine can capture more than 59.3 percent of the kinetic energy of the wind.1 An average wind turbine captures only 30 to 40%,2 while the Saphon turbine is said to be 2.3 times more efficient. Additionally, the cost is expected to be 45% less than a conventional turbine, mostly due to the fact that there are no blades, no hub, and no gearbox on the units.
With more from the company:
Here’s another technology reported by ZM Science earlier this month:
Can we get wind power without the blades or the actual wind? These startups believe so
Wind power is mostly associated with sweeping white blades, taking advantage of the strong gusts that blow over the land or the sea. But what if we could forget about the blades and even the wind and instead just have a turbine? That’s the idea of a group of European companies, who have come up with new ways to expand wind energy without the limitations of a conventional turbine.
Wind has gradually turned into a leading energy source around the globe, with costs dropping every year. But turbines can be problematic: they’re unsuited for some areas, they can harm birds, and they’re not recyclable. This has led green energy pioneers to start thinking of ways to reinvent wind power – even forgoing the need for the blades in a tower.
In Spain, the small startup Vortex Bladeless has come up with a design that can create energy from winds without the actual blades. The company claims not to be against traditional windfarms but instead hopes to fill the gaps in locations where traditional wind farms may not be appropriate, such as in urban or residential areas.
And from today’s Daily Mail:
Bladeless wind turbine that vibrates to generate power by spinning blades, experts say
- Traditional wind farms generate ‘green’ energy, but are a danger to wildlife
- The Vortex Bladeless uses ‘vortex shedding,’ when air hits a solid object, to generate power
- The current prototype is 10 feet tall and generates about 100 kilowatts
- The Madrid-based company hope to scale up to a one-megawatt model
To finish, our correspondent introduces yet another company developing such ideas: