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Interesting wind generator

Post in 'The Green Room' started by semipro, Oct 20, 2009.

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  1. semipro

    semipro Minister of Fire

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    http://www.earthtronics.com/honeywell.aspx

    Looks pretty cool. Supposedly works at lower wind speeds. Set up for net metering. I have a tall house and vibration is claimed to be low enough for roof mounting. Only major drawback other than price that I can see is that they require a "certified" installer.

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  2. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    saw the short blurb in Popular Mechanics about that this month, looks good!
  3. kenny chaos

    kenny chaos Minister of Fire

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    Carrying the Honeywell name.
  4. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    Take a look at this link regarding small wind and roof top mounts and see if it applies to this discovery. The writer is an industry respected veteran and his observations are generally mirrored by other folks who have field experience trying to keep this stuff running.

    http://www.awea.org/smallwind/sagrillo/wind_technology_breakthroughs.html

    As for the Honeywell logo, they have been pretty loose with licensing their name for a few years. I suspect that about their only involvement is receiving a fee for the use of their license, a cut of any profits and a waiver of any liability.

    Yes it would be great if someone could violate the laws of physics and come up with a small roof mounted wind turbine that puts out meaningfull power, but I dont think this is it. On the other hand it looks like a neat whirlyig, could probably hook up a lever arm and have a little man chopping wood !
  5. rhetoric

    rhetoric Member

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    One roof turbine producing 15%, a tight home lowering costs 30%, careful use of energy (cfls, timers, etc.) saving 10%, 4 solar furnaces providing 30%....

    We seem to think in this country that wind turbines are a wasteful failure because that can't produce all of our energy. If that's true, then we need to stop burning wood (because there isn't enough to produce all of our nation's heat). How much co2 would we eliminate if every home reduced it's electrical consumption by 15% (the estimated energy of the honeywell turbine)? There is an advance here (putting the electrical generation in the blades and shroud instead of a gearbox) and no, it won't save the world, but it will help (if it takes off).

    Ultimately, all energy is solar and wind turbines are a fairly indirect way of catching solar energy (already once converted to wind). We'll figure out a way to catch that energy (and the human race will still be a mess!).
  6. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    the only way to reduce oil dependence seems to be the "death by a thousand cuts" approach.
  7. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    All I can say is that it SERIOUSLY sets off my "scam-alert" warning.... Definitely seems to be operating in considerable violation of physical laws.

    Gooserider
  8. Later

    Later New Member

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    At fifteen cents per KWH we could save $300 a year. I'd rather go to a geothermal heat pump.
  9. semipro

    semipro Minister of Fire

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    We have a GHP and love it. There's just something about a wind generator that really makes me want one spinning away at our place. Before I dropped $5k on one I'd have to do a wind survey at our place 1st... probably for a year... better get started I guess.
  10. leaddog

    leaddog Minister of Fire

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    This was developed here at Grand Valley State Univercity at their alternative energy dept. Muskegan, Mi. they are building a plant in Canada to produce it and there is several working here in Muskegan. Meijer's have put some of them on there stores, and there is one downtown. I heard that Ace hardware was going to be pushing them also. Definately not snake oil
    leaddog
  11. Wet1

    Wet1 Minister of Fire

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    I saw that too, slick idea. I'm hopeful that as production ramps up, prices will come down to a reasonable level.
  12. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Right! If they could get those down to a grand, we would be on to something. Using Retired Guys number of $300 saved per year, thats a pretty good ROI.
  13. dougstove

    dougstove Member

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    But:
    (Setting aside the elimination of the gearbox and associated losses),
    Compared to a traditional 3 arm turbine, this system has lower resistance to rotation and so starts spinning to generate some power at low wind speed. But, that means that at higher wind speed, it is going to have to spin much faster than a 3 arm turbine, and/or fail to exploit the additional energy at higher wind speeds.
    Since energy goes up with the square of wind speed, on an annual basis, the moderate to high winds carry most of the energy.

    So - it might be good for a more continuous generation of a limited amount of power, over a wider range of wind speeds (and thus more of the time).
    But I would be concerned about turbine whine at high speed.
  14. pybyr

    pybyr Minister of Fire

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    I have an ongoing male arousal reaction to wanting a wind generator at my place-- and I've got lots of wind, here, too- though some women have claimed that my excitement has something to do with the big towers involved...

    but, anyways--

    anything credible that I've read up on all seems to come back to the same point that to get really worthwhile energy output, you need to get 30 FT above any other significant objects within something like a 300 FT radius; roof-mounted things seem inherently crippled from the get-go
  15. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    Agreed, and one of the things that makes my BS Detector go off in a big way. The other thing that I've always seen that this thing violates is the issue of turbulence around any obstructions and how that steals a great deal of energy from the air stream... In a conventional design, you have a very small central hub mounted generator (and there is very little power that would be generated there anyway) and foils with as little obstruction on them as possible... With this "miracle design" they put a big ring of turbulence around the outside of the turbine, and then run suport structure across the middle of it. Seems really suspect to me... (and considering how many other screwy products I've found in hardware stores, that ACE is selling them doesn't convince me that they are at all sound...

    Gooserider
  16. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    at low speed a fan/turbine/propeller is most efficient with a ring or duct around it to keep the air from "spilling" off the end of the wing/blade, (think of the winglets on airplanes they do the same thing, keep the higher pressure from going around the end of the wing to the lower pressure). I think the ring is the trick to the energy boost it is a "fence" that keeps the outer (and most effective part) of the blades doing the best work, the ring allows the pitch of the blades to be more aggressive at the end instead of almost flat like most designs. Piston aircraft have something similar called the Q-tip, the outer end of each blade has a 2" part that is bent straight back, it increases power due to keeping the higher pressure air behind the blade but the best part is it makes the prop quieter, all that air rolling around the tips causes a lot of noise.
    The other advantage is that the ring is the rotor, it has magnets in it that induce the voltage as they pass the stators in the base. rather than the normal design that has a shaft supported by bearings, and gearing (to get the generator at the correct speed) that has bearings, bearings do siphon off energy. Also having your rotor be at the outer edge makes a very slow wind speed "faster" because the magnets are on the outside of the wheel instead of the inside. I think the concept is great and can't wait to see it scaled up.
  17. semipro

    semipro Minister of Fire

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    What intrigues me the most about this generator are claims of low vibration. In many installs the cost of the tower can approach or exceed the cost of the generator unit if you're going to get it high enough to work well. The peak of our house is a good 30 ft. above the ground. My overall costs, wiring costs, and associated transmission line losses would be minimized if I could mount this on our house.

    If I read correctly the electronic controls and inverter needed to do net metering are included in the price.

    Interesting too that I saw early references to a price tag of $4500 but Ace is now showing the price at $7000.
  18. Hurricane

    Hurricane Minister of Fire

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    Here is the link to the Ace website for the turbine. Their listed price is $5999.99 today. They show availability Jan 2010, I have been looking at this for a few months and it is cool and nice but the cost is too high considering the return on investment. At NJ electricity rates I may save $300 per year, considering $6K to purchase crazy runaround for permits, maybe an installer, tax etc I figure $7K minimum. At $300/year that is 23 + years return on investment not counting any interest that money could have collected. If you balance the interest against rising electric rates it is still over 20 years.
    Now $1-2K and we are talking game on for me.
    And it comes with a 5 year warranty, how long do they last ? I hope more than 20 years.

    http://www.acehardware.com/product/...w=turbine&origkw=turbine&searchId=45366224144
  19. burntime

    burntime New Member

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    Anything like this has a warranty that only lasts as long as the product. They are banking on some gov't subsidy to fund it. At even 5k how the hell can you make it up at 300 a year... Its well into the 20 year mark considering the time value of money...
  20. Kilted

    Kilted Member

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    This site has a lot of info. The amount of power you can get depends on the swept area and square of the wind speed. Wind over a structure is turblent, normally you need to be 20 ft above and 100-200 ft away from any structues.

    http://www.otherpower.com/otherpower_wind.shtml
  21. Gooserider

    Gooserider Mod Emeritus

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    Correct Kilted, this is why so many of us are treating the wind plant in question with such skepticism - It tends to set off our "scam alarms" when sellers ignore things like the basic laws of physics...

    Gooserider
  22. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    I'd have to paint it to look like a giant sunflower.


    Matt
  23. Kilted

    Kilted Member

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    Gooserider,

    Here is an evaluation; http://www.wind-works.org/SmallTurbines/Windtronics760EstimatedGeneration.html

    Paul Gipe has written several books on small wind turbines and understands what you can really produce using real wind turbines. His scam alarm not only went off the lights are flashing .... give this one a miss.
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