Portable 50kW wind turbine unveiled | RenewEconomy

Portable 50kW wind turbine unveiled

A wind turbine that can fold itself into a 40ft shipping container and then, upon arrival at its destination, more or less erect itself.



Uprise Energy has developed a wind turbine that is portable and easier to maintain in numerous ways. It is called the Uprise Portable Power Center. By portable, the company means that it can actually be moved without digging it out of the ground and completely pulling it apart, but it’s still quite a beast.

Normally, wind turbines have to be assembled from many parts and then mounted with their bases in the ground or on a sturdy surface. In order to move them, they are either demolished due to their almost permanent installations (for large-scale turbines), or they have to be dug out of the ground, or unbolted from their surfaces.

What makes this new turbine stand out is the fact that it can literally fold itself back into a container the size of a standard 40′ ISO shipping container and be driven to its destination with a tow truck.

When it reaches its destination, contractors can put the blades on at ground level, and then it erects itself.

The electricity generation capacity (often called nameplate capacity) of the turbine is 50 kW, or 50,000 watts. The manufacturer claims that it is efficient and can generate electricity at a lower cost than American utility companies normally charge for it (the nationwide average is 11 cents per kWh).

The Uprise Portable Power is optimized for operation in environments with low, steady, or gusty winds. It rotates 360° to face the wind in order to maximize performance, and it also adjusts the blade speed and pitch (this involves adjusting the blades’ position while they are on the hub).

When the wind speed is high enough to damage it, the portable plant actually lays the turbine down, unlike other turbines which activate their brakes to prevent the turbines from turning too fast, because it isn’t drag that breaks them, but inertia.

This turbine can actually be maintained on the ground so that service technicians do not have to go on top of the turbine 40 feet above the ground. This might reduce the labour cost.

The turbine also includes power storage of some kind. “Excess power is stored and power delivery is stabilized,” the company writes. “When wind power exceeds demand, energy is stored. When wind energy is low, the Uprise machine draws on the stored power.”

It is refreshing to see unique designs, especially when they are so innovative. Whether or not they are viable, it is possible to learn from unique/new designs sometimes. You can get some good ideas from a bad design!

It’s not clear at this point if this turbine will be competitive or not. What are your thoughts?

Clean Technica (http://s.tt/1qd7L)

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  1. Eric 8 years ago

    This looks like a great concept for mining operations that have a transient mining fleet and infrastructure moving from deposit to deposit (gold, iron ore, etc)

  2. Alastair Leith 8 years ago

    Based on those details the power is stored in thin air? Maybe compressed thin air?

    • Mike J 8 years ago

      If power is being made and there is not enough power in demand, there is plenty of power storage means and methods.

    • Jonathan 8 years ago

      Hi Alastair. If the entirety of the power being generated is not being consumed in realtime, then there are a couple options for energy storage such as batteries or a mechanical flywheel OR surplus power can be used for any number of things, like dissociating hydrogen or extracting water from air.

  3. Eric 8 years ago

    I think Alastair is referring possibly to transmission and distribution infrastructure having to be set up to accomade the mobile towers, maybe I’m wrong. In any case, I think its a concept outside of the box that could solve many of the issues surrounding expensive diesel generation in remote communities both in inland Australia and on the coast. Communication power supplies spring to mind not to mention road side parking bays, exploration camps, water pumping solutions. For a country such as Australia which has remote and far flung destinations I think its a brilliant idea.

    • Mike J 8 years ago

      Well said Eric, and good eye on the “water pumping solutions”
      Think about a package attached to the system which uses minimal or “the excess Power being produced” to any number of H2o harvesting methods such as dehumidification, drilling & pumping from subterranean and surface water sources coupled with purification… possibilities unlimited with a little power.

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