KITE WIND TESTING GOES ON
Google’s new wind turbine; Makani, a 600kW wind turbine based on the concept of kiteboarding, is currently under development at Google's R&D lab, Google X.
January 21, 2015 (Today’s Energy Solutions)
“Google X's Makani X is working to…[develop] energy kites, a new type of wind turbine that uses lightweight electronics, advanced materials, and smart software to generate more energy with less materials – all at lower cost…While wind turbines have reduced wind energy costs, they don’t make economic sense in [some] places…[It] is made possible by recent technological innovations. Computers have become smaller and more powerful, while carbon fiber has become stronger, lighter, and less expensive. These breakthroughs replace tons of steel and concrete with lightweight electronics, advanced materials, and smart software…By using a strong flexible tether, energy kites can reach higher altitudes (80m to 350m) and eliminate 90% of the materials of conventional wind turbines, resulting in lower costs. Because they are more aerodynamic and can access stronger winds in more locations, each individual energy kite can generate 50% more energy…The Makani energy kite system consists of four parts: the energy kite, the tether, the ground station, and the computer system…” click here for more