Kitepower: Is this Kite an alternative to Wind Turbines?
Posted on: November 24, 2014 /
Generate Electricity with a Kite.
Kitepower is harvesting wind energy by using a kite. This results in a eco and cost friendly solution. Traditional wind turbines are expensive to place and maintain. Kitepower would be a few cents cheaper per kilowatt generated, compared to traditional ways. An average Dutch household consumes 3,340 kilowatts per year, resulting in a 70 euro lower electricity bill.
How does Kitepower work?
The system is operated in periodic pumping cycles, alternating between reel-out and reel-in of the tether. During reel-out, the kite is flying figure-eight maneuvers at high speed (70 to 90 km/h). This creates a high traction force (3.1 kN at 7 m/s wind speed) which is converted into electricity by the drum and the connected 20 kW generator. When reaching the maximum tether length, the kite is de-powered by releasing the rear (steering) lines such that the whole wing rotates and aligns with the apparent wind. Using the drum/generator module as a winch, the kite is now pulled back to the initial position to start the next pumping cycle. De-powering reduces the traction force during reel-in by 80% and for this reason the energy consumed during reel-in is only a fraction of the energy generated during reel-out. Crucial element of the technology is the automatic control and synchronization of the drum/generator module and the flight dynamics of the kite. Source: Kitepower
Other innovative wind turbine alternatives
Ampyx Power: Generate Electricity with the use of unmanned systems (Drones / UAS)
Makani: an energy kite that generates more energy at lower cost