Solar Aero Research, a New Hampshire non-profit alternative energy research corporation, of Greenville, New Hampshire, today unveiled the proof-of-concept prototype of its revolutionary wind turbine. This totally enclosed unit, based upon the early patents of Nicola Tesla, further modified for low fluid velocity use as a wind turbine, is wildlife-friendly, yet promises high efficiency and low-cost energy production.
Low maintenance will be a key to long life at low cost, with routine annual maintenance being extremely limited. For tower-mounted turbines, support bearings for the turbine itself will be magnetic, with no lubrication required. Yaw bearings will be permanently lubricated. Generator equipment will be located at the tower base, thus eliminating the need for specialized personnel and equipment to climb the tower on a routine basis.
The follow-on prototype unit will be lighter, 2/3 the diameter of the P.O.C. unit seen here and will be constructed of lightweight composite materials suitable for tower mounting. This unit will also be sized for a 10kW brushless alternator and is intended to be suitable for erection near military surveillance radar installations, due to the inherent non-interfering nature of this design. This turbine should also deliver power at a cost comparable to present coal-fired powerplants, inasmuch as there is but one rotating component, which consists of the turbine/driveshaft/alternator assembly, with no heavily loaded bearings. Cost of this unit is projected to be in the order of approximately USD$1.50/watt in 2009 dollars, uninstalled.
Efforts are currently underway to secure additional R&D grant funding for follow-on prototypes. Production licenses are available worldwide.