The universal rationale for the massive public commitment to wind power is that it is environmentally benign. But land based wind power has at least two major environmental problems—noise and the killing of bird populations that has begun to cause serious concern among mainstream environmentalists. As an alternative we propose an airborne wind turbine. The turbine will be launched in tow behind a moving vehicle on land or a vessel at sea. In the space of less than 100 meters it will be airborne and achieve working altitude (550-850 meters) within 5 minutes after the launch. It will stay aloft indefinitely once anchored to the ground or sea bottom, and will provide power at 100% of its rated capacity while aloft. The enormous advantage of this wind turbine over its land based counterpart is achieved by attaching the wind turbine to an unpowered autogiro (a predecessor of helicopter). The autogiro has a unique capability of extracting energy out of the wind to keep the both itself and the added weight of the turbine aloft. The aerodynamic drag forces will be transmitted to the ground via a tether that will act both as an anchor and a conduit of the generated electrical power generated by the turbine. Because the autogiro has the capability of sustain the turbine at high altitudes, where the wind is steady, continuous and powerful (17.5 m/sec), it will operate at 100% of its rated capacity (most turbine name plate ratings is for wind speed of 12.5m/sec) and thus reducing the cost of operation and ownership through high productivity. Also the turbine is operating at heights where there is no danger to birds and bat population and its noise will be attenuated by distance from the ground. The elimination of the wind turbine’s foundation and its supporting pole will substantially bring down the cost of both ownership and operation of wind turbines(at least by 50%). The affordability and high productivity of airborne wind turbine will create a demand in areas where the geographic conditions are not conducive to availability of constant wind. (For example: All farming communities) where surface wind is a deterrent to farming activities, however the large open areas over the existing farms are available for power production. Because the turbine operates at great heights (550 meters above the ground) its environmental impact will be minimal due to the attenuation of its sound and the fact that there are no birds at this height. Because the cost of ownership of wind turbine will be reduced substantially a number of farming communities may choose to install aerial turbines in their farms for additional income which results in a higher tax base for rural counties. Larger Aerial wind turbine may also be used in large scale commercial water desalination plants in impacted coastal areas (Southern California, Gulf of California, Middle East, Africa and Australia). Presently the cost of desalination is nearly $1.00 per cubic meter 80%-of which are attributed to the energy cost.
ABOUT THE ENTRANT
Name: Anush Badii
Type of entry: individual
Number of times previously entering contest:3
Anush's favorite design and analysis
paper and pencil
Anush's hobbies and activities:
I design things that nobody likes
Anush is inspired by:
necessity, mostly seeing that people who attempt innovation have inadequate knowledge of what they are attempting.
Software used for this entry:
Patent status: none