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Helium-Filled Wind Turbine Harvests High-Altitude Energy
3/31/2014

A company spun off from MIT research called Altaeros Energies has designed a helium-filled wind turbine that floats above the ground and harnesses high-altitude winds.  (Source: Altaeros Energies)
A company spun off from MIT research called Altaeros Energies has designed a helium-filled wind turbine that floats above the ground and harnesses high-altitude winds.
(Source: Altaeros Energies)

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cookiejar
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Gold
Re: Helium-Filled Wind Turbine article
cookiejar   4/4/2014 9:43:07 AM
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I agree that the aviation industry and regulators would be out to kill the spread of these devices.
On the other hand, there are large wind turbine farms off the coast of Europe, that I figure would be a major hazard to ships and watercraft.

I guess it's all a matter of power politics.  Today's trend is to the very best policians that money can buy.  Wind turbines weren't getting far until the big money stepped in.

Trenth
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Platinum
Re: Helium-Filled Wind Turbine article
Trenth   4/3/2014 3:41:09 PM
NO RATINGS
For cargo it would work except maybe when driving directly into the wind.

Cargo ships are increasingly using electric drives, and container ships need massive electrical power for refrigeration.  

http://www.motorship.com/news101/ships-and-shipyards/innovative-diesel-electric-system-for-dutch-cargo-ships

http://www.longtailpipe.com/2012/10/if-container-ships-were-fully-electric.html

http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1020063_pollution-perspective-one-giant-cargo-ship-emits-as-much-as-50-million-cars

It's worth doing.





NadineJ
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Platinum
Re: Nooo, not helium!
NadineJ   4/3/2014 10:59:27 AM
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It's true that helium is an expensive and dwindling natural resource but I think this is a much better use than the Mylar balloons that we see in grocery stores.

Jerry dycus
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Gold
Re: Helium-Filled Wind Turbine article
Jerry dycus   4/3/2014 8:58:37 AM
NO RATINGS
Aircraft are everywhere  and the FAA that controls airspace gaurds it well.  And once 1,000's of these are up above 1,000' and even there, are going to kill people.

I'm very familar and just look at how hard it is to put up big TV antenna towers that take out a number of aircraft/yr at only 1,000' or less.  Multiply this multiple times.

Many places like by my house small planes must fly under 1,000' or even 500' to stay below the TCA landing airspace.  

 

 

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: Helium-Filled Wind Turbine article
Elizabeth M   4/3/2014 5:18:49 AM
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That's an interesting application of the technology, Trenth, but I am not exactly sure if I agree with you. Although the fact that there probably wouldn't be a lot of air traffic around in these locations and the fact that they are very remote make them a good option for deployment of this turbine, I wonder whether the infrastructure of those ships could support it? Perhaps military ships but I am not sure about cargo.

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: Aircraft
Elizabeth M   4/3/2014 5:14:26 AM
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I think what people need to remember here is that the founder of the company does have aeronautical experience at SpaceX. I am sure what he learned there will go a long way to making this concept work.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Helium-Filled Wind Turbine article
Elizabeth M   4/3/2014 5:07:09 AM
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These are all very valid points, Jerry dycus. If what you're saying is true I suppose the company will find out during tests. I do still think it's a workable concept.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Nooo, not helium!
Elizabeth M   4/3/2014 5:04:19 AM
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Thanks for your comment, DarwinE. I didn't think about the use of helium but to be honest, I actually this the possible benefits of this outweigh the cost of using helium.

DarwinE
User Rank
Iron
Nooo, not helium!
DarwinE   4/2/2014 2:00:52 PM
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Seems like only modest improvement over ground based wind turbines for very irresponsible use of our most precious natural resource: Helium.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Helium-Filled Wind Turbine article
Elizabeth M   4/2/2014 5:30:01 AM
NO RATINGS
Thanks for your comment beentheredonethat. There will be a lot more details about the wind turbine available after the test in Alaska, so stay tuned for more stories. I'm sure also you might find more information on the company's website.

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