By Sierra Robinson
May 16, 2013 (San Diego’s East County) – A new generation of bladeless wind turbines now in testing offers promise for designs that could reduce risk to birds, reduce noise, require smaller footprints and lower heights, thus less view disturbance.
For example, the slogan on the SheerWind website is “Changing the Course of Power Generation” and with the company’s new wind turbine design, it just might. Sheerwind began creation of a new energy technology three years ago, when founded by Dr. Daryoush Allaei. Since then, SheerWind has created a bladeless, funnel-shaped wind turbine that it claims is a ‘revolution.’
The company’s website claims the turbine, named INVOLEX, produces energy that is “affordable, abundant, safe, and clean.”
INVOLEX works by funneling the wind it catches into a ground-based generator. The speed of the wind is increased as the funnels channel it into a narrowing passage. The wind then passes through the ground-level generator. SheerWind claims that because of this new method, the energy output would be greater than that of a traditional turbine.
If INVOLEX is able to produce power with slower wind speeds, it could be used in more areas including urbanized locations, so natural habitats could be spared from destruction.
The SheerWind website also contains testimonials form several professors who worked on the turbine design. Professor Yiannis Andreopoulos stated that at first, he was skeptical of the technology. However, he said that his doubts were cleared once they built and tested their own model at the school. Professor Ali M. Sadegh stated that after initial testing, the turbine showed great promise. But INVOLEX is not the only claimed solution to todays wind turbine problems
Tunisian green energy startup Saphon Energy also boasts a bladeless turbine, which converts wind power into energy through a back and forth motion, creating energy using pistons.
Without blades, the Saphonian claims to eliminate noise pollution and all dangers to birds. It is also intended to store excess energy, in order to provide power during times without wind.