Maglev wind turbines 1000x more efficient than normal windmills

s243a

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Mar 9, 2007
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Maglev wind turbines 1000x more efficient than normal windmills

Posted Nov 26th 2007 3:31PM by Nilay Patel
Filed under: Misc. Gadgets

We've seen a couple innovative wind power solutions pop up, but none that claim to offer the benefits of maglev wind turbines, which use full-permanent magnets to nearly eliminate friction by "floating" the blades above the base. According to developers, the technology is capable of scaling to massive sizes, with a proposed $53M turbine able enough to replace 1000 traditional windmills and power 750 thousand homes. Additional benefits include the ability to generate power with winds as slow as three miles per hour, operational costs some 50 percent cheaper than windmills, and an estimated lifespan of 500 years. That all sounds great, but the real proof will come when these things get put to use, which may happen sooner than you'd think: Development is proceeding rapidly in both the US and China, with Chinese power company Zhongke Hengyuan Energy Technology currently building a $5M factory to produce the turbines in capacities from 400 to 5,000 watts.
http://www.engadget.com/2007/11/26/maglev-wind-turbines-1000x-more-effiencient-than-normal-windmill/
 

darkbeaver

the universe is electric
Jan 26, 2006
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That's beautiful, I built a verticle axis machine with plastic barrels and plywood it functioned for two years, it failed in the last big wind. I always wanted to try the same but to float the rotor in fluid as a bearing, the magnets are better.
 

Lester

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Sep 28, 2007
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That is sweet, now i wanna build one - They can't be that expensive either, power companies aren't going to like that i could build one to power my own home and sell the excess to them.
 

Lester

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Sep 28, 2007
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Thanks Dark Beaver, that vertical axis one is what i'd like to buid- if you put windings of copper wire around the bottom, where it passes the magnets as it spins could'nt that generate electricity?
 

TenPenny

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Jun 9, 2004
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Yes it would, but you typically want a generator to spin faster, so you use a gear system to run the generator much faster than the windmill turns.
 

darkbeaver

the universe is electric
Jan 26, 2006
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My verticle axis machine was built with plastic 45 gallon drums and mounted on top of a Subaru Justy. I used the cv shafts to connect the differential from the same car that stepped down the speed about 3.5 to 1 and changed the transmission direction from verticle to horizontal, my plan was to drive a water pump with it. I used the old car as a base and a shelter for the pump and it's drive. It was cobbled together pretty quickly with about thirty bucks spent for the barrels. I'll build a better and bigger one someday soon. The little alternators are easy to build and all you have to do is scale up or down depending on your available capital and or requirements. The one I built is three phase, so you've got three wires coming off the turbine into your panel accross a couple of rectifiers and into your battery.
I'am after torque and even with the four blades made from two barrels you got quite a bit of torque which you can step up for some decent generator speed. I drew up a verticle axis job using 200 gallon oil tanks split diagonally along the long axis sort of like raison scoops only bigger, that's quite a bit more sail area than the 45 gallon barrels, I'll get arround to scrounging some shafting and heavy bearings for it this coming spring. And I'll have to pour a base for it as well. From my point of view bigger is better and verticle is the way to go to avoid the towers, if you get ten or fifteen feet off the ground in an unobstructed area with a little natural rise it should produce some very decent torque. good lucke it's lots of fun and the power is there in the wind.
 

Lester

Council Member
Sep 28, 2007
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Gearbox

I was just musing about wheather or not you could get rid of the transmission and generator as I think a lot of energy is wasted powering them, around fifteen percent I think(Vague memories of Physics Class), if you could incorporate it directly into the design it stands to reason it should be more efficient, - or not have any thoughts on how? maybe get the magnets to counter-rotate thereby effectively doubling the speed.