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Japanese breakthrough makes wind cheaper than nuclear

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Japanese Breakthrough Makes Wind Power Cheaper Than Nuclear

 

19th January 2012

 

By Karl Burkart - mnn.com/green-tech

 

The International Clean Energy Analysis (ICEA) gateway estimates that the U.S. possesses 2.2 million km2 of high wind potential (Class 3-7 winds) — about 850,000 square miles of land that could yield high levels of wind energy. This makes the U.S. something of a Saudi Arabia for wind energy, ranked third in the world for total wind energy potential.

 

Let’s say we developed just 20 percent of those wind resources — 170,000 square miles (440,000 km2) or an area roughly 1/4 the size of Alaska — we could produce a whopping 8.7 billion megawatt hours of electricity each year (based on a theoretical conversion of six 1.5 MW turbines per km2 and an average output of 25 percent. (1.5 MW x 365 days x 24 hrs x 25% = 3,285 MWh’s).

 

The United States uses about 26.6 billion MWh’s, so at the above rate we could satisfy a full one-third of our total annual energy needs. (Of course, this assumes the concurrent deployment of a nationwide Smart Grid that could store and disburse the variable sources of wind power as needed using a variety of technologies — gas or coal peaking, utility scale storage via batteries or fly-wheels, etc).

 

Now what if a breakthrough came along that potentially tripled the energy output of those turbines? You see where I’m going. We could in theory supply the TOTAL annual energy needs of the U.S. simply by exploiting 20 percent of our available wind resources.

 

Well, such a breakthrough has been made, and it’s called the “wind lens.”

 

More... http://wakeup-world.com/2012/01/19/japanese-breakthrough-makes-wind-power-cheaper-than-nuclear/

 

Sorry, have changed to a Mac and would upload pics but this is getting on my nerves... the good news is I remembered to post more on GEI!

 

Link above has video about the "wind lens" which is a very simple modification.

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More... http://wakeup-world.com/2012/01/19/japanese-breakthrough-makes-wind-power-cheaper-than-nuclear/

 

Sorry, have changed to a Mac and would upload pics but this is getting on my nerves... the good news is I remembered to post more on GEI!

 

Link above has video about the "wind lens" which is a very simple modification.

 

 

Very interesting. Thanks for posting.

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This "breakthrough" could be very valuable in the UK.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ifF-MOuzM_s

 

(I shall move this thread to MAIN for a day or two)

 

Here's another new design - looks like a Flower

 

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Yes, very interesting how the frame doubles the output. Not sure how difficult to install or how expensive the frames are on the large scale turbines that are installed already.

 

EDIT: The patented US version of this (apparently by a US inventor) is called WindTamer.

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... Not sure how difficult to install or how expensive the frames are on the large scale turbines that are installed already.

 

EDIT: The patented US version of this (apparently by a US inventor) is called WindTamer.

 

This type of design has been around for a long while. There are a number of engineering issues:

 

1) Structural strength and fatigue issues,

2) amount and type of materials that need to be used,

3) Promised increase in efficiency in real conditions will not be achieved since the turbines are tested in wind tunnels that have their own walls -> this causes some extra channelling of the flow.

 

It's cheaper to double the power output by making the blades 1.4 times longer - that's why we see the increase in turbine heights and diameters.

 

The tulip-design look beautiful, however, from engineering point of view it's close to being insane.

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This type of design has been around for a long while. There are a number of engineering issues:

 

1) Structural strength and fatigue issues,

2) amount and type of materials that need to be used,

3) Promised increase in efficiency in real conditions will not be achieved since the turbines are tested in wind tunnels that have their own walls -> this causes some extra channelling of the flow.

 

It's cheaper to double the power output by making the blades 1.4 times longer - that's why we see the increase in turbine heights and diameters.

 

The tulip-design look beautiful, however, from engineering point of view it's close to being insane.

 

Ah that pesky r^2 :rolleyes:

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Ah that pesky r^2 :rolleyes:

 

Indeed, the bigger the better, but the cost increases rather drastically

 

 

There is a discussion below the video where the cost of one of these turbines producing 6MW (rather intermittently) is comparable with the cost of the nuclear sub reactor producing 300MW including fuel.

 

Wind Power has its role to play, however, I think amongst all green technologies the concentrated solar power is the future. Has anyone done any research on the best way how one can invest in it?

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