Floating wind turbine in the sky Can Power whole Villages

Dan Simmons | (BBC Click) –

“The floating wind turbine that could help provide power to remote communities. The helium-filled device, known as The Bat, can adjust its height to take advantage of the weather conditions and can boost mobile phone signals if telecommunications equipment are added to the rig.
BBC Click’s Dan Simmons reports.”

Floating wind turbine takes to the sky – BBC Click

2 Responses

  1. Kind of complicated. High wind could surely tear it to shreds, especially if scaled up. Complicated ground equipment. Would need monitored to avoid damage by wind and lowered during storms. Inflatable bag is expensive. Helium is also expensive. I wonder how much the ground equipment costs? 600 meters of copper cable?
    Essentially you’re trading an expensive, high maintenance, fragile system for a mast. If it gets hit by lightning, you loose everything. A Ferrari when all you need is a couple Tata Nanos. I think you could build a really nice village generator for the price of their ropes alone.
    Helium atoms are so small that they eventually permeate the envelope so a supply would be kept at hand and pressure in the bag would have to be monitored.
    Weight of the cables/ropes would become a problem. More height, more output but heavier cables/ropes and bigger bag. There’s a limit on how big the bag can be, about the size of a blimp.
    This system isn’t simple or cheap. Is it suitable for a permanent installation? If it comes down where does it land?
    It might be good for military applications but not for villages. Villages need cheap and simple (don’t we all.)

  2. In the real world, a combination of cheap PV panels and a simple tower supported wind turbine coupled with simple rechargeable LED lighting would serve most small villages on earth very well for much lower cost.

    Just as we now have “cell in a box,” some company should package a “local power station” in a a box.”

    The “box” in both cases is simply a standard 40′ shipping container with the appropriate equipment bolted into racks inside.

    BTW – the original cell network in Beijing was built by the multinationals using “cell in a box.” “CIB” consists of fully functional cell sites in a single 40′ container and a central control system and power plant in several containers. Plop the central control complex in some convenient place, but one cell site box next to it and then start putting cell site boxes all over the place. the cell site boxes are connected to the central control system with digital microwave. the digital microwave antennas and the cell site antennas are mounted on a standard ugly metal tower (remember that the places these are used don’t have the NIMBY problems the USA has). If there is no “real” phone network in reasonable digital microwave distance, then the other “box” that is plopped down is a digital Sattcomm terminal (typically a 20′ container with a built-in antenna).

    Since there is a global transport infrastructure for shipping containers, putting “turnkey” stuff in them is a great idea.

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