from the urls-we-dig-up dept
Wind power is getting a bit of boost from various new technologies that allow turbines to capture higher altitude wind without building enormous and unsightly towering structures on the ground. There are plenty of airborne wind companies (eg. WindLift, SkySails, Sky Windpower, NTS, etc), as well as smarter ground-based generators that are aiming to provide cheaper and more reliable electricity. Check out a few of these links if you like the idea of the skies filled with drones, blimps, kites and other floating devices.
- Altaeros Energies has a floating wind turbine that should generate electricity at the cost of $0.18 per kilowatt-hour. The Buoyant Airborne Turbine (BAT) is an inflatable, helium-filled ring with a turbine placed in the center. It has a capacity of 30 kilowatts, and it flies at an altitude of 300 meters. [url]
- Google’s Makani project generates electricity from high flying kites equipped with turbines that can circulate from 80 to 350 meters off the ground. These kites can capture more energy than traditional ground-based turbines, and they can be moved to different locations to maximize their wind collection. [url]
- Ground-based wind turbine generators haven’t changed that much over the last few decades, but they’re getting more cost competitive with fossil fuel generators (about $0.065 per kilowatt-hour). With sensors and battery storage systems, traditional generators can provide more consistent and reliable power to the grid. [url]
If you’d like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.