CES 2011: Vertical axis wind turbines from Urban Green Energy

urban green energy vertical axisVertical axis wind turbines from Urban Green Energy-redefining what a wind energy turbine looks like

The Eddy from Urban Green Energy looks like your average vertical axis wind turbine but is far from it.  Low cut in speed and solid power output make this a contender for a the home generating market.

 But at just under 9 feet tall, the Eddy could provide clean electricity from a pole in a yard or on the roof at a home, office or other urban building.  With a $4,000 price tag for now it may be out of reach for most consumers but still shows the value in wind energy.  For those of you with crazy climates like myself it will make you happy to know that the turbine can withstand blasts of wind up to 120 miles per hour and should last for 20 years.   The New York-based company also makes other turbines ranging from 6 feet tall to 43 feet. The machines could offer city and suburban consumers a renewable energy alternative to solar panels. After all, there seems to be a surge lately in portable or small-scale clean-tech innovations.

But wait ,The new york times reported that, -– Urban Green Energy already thought of that. The turbines can apparently be joined up to existing solar power infrastructure. And another product form the company –- the Sanya -– is a hybrid wind- and solar-powered LED street lamp that was recently installed outside the San Francisco Civic Center.

Vertical axis wind turbines are different from traditional wind turbines in that their main axis is perpendicular to the ground. Their configuration makes them ideal for both rural and urban settings and offers the owner an opportunity to offset the rising cost of electricity and to preserve the environment.

There are many advantages of vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs):

  • VAWTs are not affected by the direction of the wind which is useful in areas where the wind changes direction frequently or quickly. Unlike traditional horizontal axis wind turbines no mechanism is needed to turn the wind turbine towards the wind meaning better performance in areas where a tall tower isn’t feasible, obstacles are nearby, or the wind is more turbulent.
  • VAWTs are better able to harvest turbulent air flow found around buildings and other obstacles; situations more common in areas where people live.
  • VAWTs are ideal for both rural and urban applications including roof top installations. Depending on the roof’s shape, wind flow over the roof may even be concentrated leading to an increased energy output.
  • Simple to install and maintain
  • Quiet operation
  • Pleasant appearance