Academic Venture Fund - 2012

Energy Harvesting from High-Density, Small-Scale Turbines in Urban Areas

Illustration of an array of mini wind turbines

Large wind turbines have become familiar rural sights. This project will bring wind turbines built on a much smaller scale into the city. Researchers will design and test mini-turbines packed together into attractive visible arrays. Mounted on building walls and roofs, the turbines will interfere with each other constructively, creating wind flow for significantly increased power extraction. Incorporating reflective surfaces, color, and low-energy lighting, artistic arrays of mini-turbines have the potential to bring renewable energy production to the urban environment, while serving as memorable sustainability outreach tools.

Investigators: Charles Williamson, Todd Cowen, Kevin Pratt