Energy

About: <p>Fossil&nbsp;fuels&nbsp;are non-renewable, they draw on finite resources that will eventually dwindle, becoming too expensive or too environmentally damaging to retrieve. In contrast, the many types of&nbsp;renewable energy&nbsp;resources such as wind and solar&nbsp;energy are constantly replenished and will never run out.<br />Wind turbines and solar panels are an increasingly common sight. But why? What are the benefits of renewable energies and how do they improve our health, environment, and economy?</p> <p>The WhatsOrb category &lsquo;Energy&rsquo; explores and shows the many positive impacts of clean energy, including the benefits of&nbsp;<a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/solution/energy/wind">wind</a>,&nbsp;<a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/solution/energy/solar">solar</a> and&nbsp;geothermal. Next to it critical articles about nuclear and unknown energy sources.</p> <p>If there was an urge to come up with renewable energy forms and to ​​change energy use, it is now! WhatsOrb Global Sustainability X-change Platform is for you, storytellers and influencers to write about these topics and share them with the world. How you minimalize your energy consumption, the solar panels you choose and how did you isolate your house. In a nutshell; how to change your and other people&rsquo;s lifestyle.</p> <p>Global sustainability X change, that is what you can do together with WhatsOrb. <a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/blog/your-shared-sustainable-ideas-make-our-earth-a-better-place">What's in it for me</a>?</p>
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The Illusions Of Renewables. Solar And Wind Will Not Save Our Climate
Far too often, the debate on climate change shifts to one of fossil fuels versus renewable energy. If we were to completely let go of the ‘wasteful’ and switch to energy generated by natural elements such as wind, solar or waves, it would - or so it is alleged - save our planet. This thought has been at the center of the climate debate for more than 30 years, setting in motion large-scale renewable energy projects. However, looking at today’s landscape, we see that there isn’t a single nation that has completely shifted its energy needs to renewable sources. Some Scandinavian countries are well underway to realising a near-zero carbon electricity supply, but what stands out here, is the fact that renewables like solar and wind only make up a small percentage of this. It is a well-documented fact that the number of solar panels or wind turbines required to even come close to the amount of energy generated by ‘regular’ producers is massive. At the same time, these enormous grids required will lead to higher costs of generating electricity, huge amounts of energy required for its production, and leave behind a large environmental footprint. Additionally, it is a rather unreliable source of energy.   In short, solar and wind energy are not just falling short of what they ought to be producing in order to be an adequate replacement, they are also largely unnecessary when looking at the bigger picture. Which will, eventually, really be a good thing. Renewables history When listening to a regular climate change debate, one will be quick to conclude that renewable energy - in particular solar and wind energy - is a relatively new invention. Wind turbines have, after all, not been recorded in modern history as a common sight until recently. Yet the reality is that wind and sunlight are some of the oldest sources of energy that we have. Already back in 1833, a man named John Etzler was involved in a proposal that sought to construct solar power plants. These would employ mirrors to concentrate sunlight on boilers. Solar panels that are capable of generating electricity have even been mentioned in literature back in the late 1800s. The schools of thought were there, waiting to be picked up - but unfortunately being overrun by the power of coal and other fossil fuels. Yet renewables were never far from our mind, as there have been numerous mentions of solar energy in publications throughout the 20th century - pointing at it as the next ‘big thing’ in power generation. This started in 1891, with The New York Times reporting that solar energy is not yet economical in an article titled “ Solar Energy: What the Sun's Rays Can Do and May Yet Be Able to Do ”, in which it concluded "… the day is not unlikely to arrive before long… ”. Solar and wind energy revolution! Did it arrive? That day did arrive, yet it never really ‘caught on’, despite the hype being attributed to it by journalists and experts alike. In 1931, another journalist of The New York Times had discovered this ‘hidden treasure’, writing about “ the evolution of civilization similar to that which followed the invention by James Watt of the steam engine ”. In the following decades, renewables slowly got more attention and found themselves at the center of scientific and political debate, with subsidies, tax cuts and grants being thrown at it. Especially around the turn of the century, it seemed as if the ‘big breakthrough’ was waiting to happen - only waiting on that last bit of funding. A massive $2 trillion was spent on wind and solar energy combined between 2007 and 2016, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, with governments spending up to 100 times more on its subsidies than it did for nuclear and fossil fuels.   The results? Far from as impressive: in 2016, solar and wind generated energy only made up 1.3 and 3.9 percent of the earth’s total, respectively. ( Recommended :  Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades ) Denmark and Germany as role model? Of course, these numbers above are merely an average. Some countries, like Denmark, show more promising numbers for its decarbonisation process: where wind energy in particular is thriving, making up 48 percent of the total electricity in the country. Does this make them the role model for renewables that we need to create a blueprint for other countries as well? Well, it is important to understand the specific reasons why this tiny Scandinavian country was able to achieve this. Firstly, it is small. Really small. It has fewer than 6 million inhabitants, occupies a piece of land that can be crossed in only a few hours, and is a minor player on the world’s economic stage.   While small, it is located in a favourable region, with many European neighbours willing to import the excess wind energy generated, lowering the risk of a costly surplus. Regardless, Denmark’s electricity prices are still amongst the highest in the world. And while this is justified by claiming that the industry is one of its most important export products, it is still striking.   Areas that are deploying solar energy on a large scale have seen similar uptakes in electricity price. Denmark’s neighbour Germany has long boasted a status as the poster child of renewables, but is facing similar issues. Their electricity is the second most expensive in Europe, after Denmark, while emissions are not declining as much as they would like.   Danish Tax Minister Karsten Lauritzen said that the Government should rethink the level of tax on electricity consumption, which is currently the highest in Europe. According to the Tax Ministry, approximately 40 percent of a household electricity bill is tax but these revenues were and are nessecarry in Denmmark to subsidize the development of renewable energy. Carbon emissions least production: France and Sweden Therefore, measuring the share of solar and wind based energy sources in the total energy production will paint a somewhat misleading image - and show the inefficiency of solar and wind. A much better benchmark can be found when looking at the amount of carbon emissions per capita. Here, France and Sweden are ranking high. The surprising thing? While those countries have successfully cut their carbon emissions, they have done so by employing only limited wind and solar sources. Sweden is deriving 95 percent of its electricity from zero-carbon sources, and France 88 percent. What these sources are? Nuclear and hydroelectric power. Other countries, including Norway, Brazil and Costa Rica, have harnessed hydroelectric power in a similar fashion, effectively decarbonising their economies. Nuclear is slightly more scalable and reliable, compared to hydroelectricity’s relatively large environmental impact. Hydroelectricity, as demonstrated by Brazil and California, is inherently unreliable and will not let itself be steered, meaning that countries will have to fall back on fossil fuels if production unexpectedly falls short. Thus, nuclear energy appears to be the only zero-carbon source that is capable of saving our planet - it is scalable, reliable, and efficient. Renewables not necessary to save the climate   Good news, so far: we do not need renewables to solve climate change. Renewables require a lot of land and specific wasteful ‘ingredients’ like concrete, steel and glass for its production - nuclear plants only need a fraction of this.   {youtube}                                              The Illusions Of Renewables. Solar And Wind Will Not Save Our Climate To demonstrate this: solar panels have been shown to rake up to 300 times more toxic waste than nuclear energy. And even after having been produced in a wasteful manner, they still harm the environment by occupying large areas of land, threatening the local ecosystem - all in exchange for a relatively minor share of electricity. ( Recommended :  Solar Farms In Space: Next Step In Renewable Energy ) Are we headed for a solar waste crisis? While people are up in arms about nuclear waste, only very few really seem to be concerned about the concept of solar waste. And solar waste there is: most countries do not have an adequate plan for safely disposing this often toxic waste, while its pile is growing steadily. Nuclear waste makes all the alarm bells in our heads go off, while solar waste seems to be regarded with something akin to indifference. Solar waste versus nuclear   Let’s start with some cold, hard facts. Every unit of energy generated by solar creates 3000 times more toxic waste than a unit of energy generated by nuclear energy. To put it in a perspective that hits home: Environmental Progress calculated that, if all waste generated over the next 25 years would be stacked on a football field, the pile of nuclear waste would be about the same height as the Leaning Tower of Pisa (52 meters), while the solar waste pile would be as high as two Mt. Everests (16 km). Developing countries, on the other hand, are facing similar issues. China, India and Ghana are dealing with those living in communities near waste dumps. Here, waste is often burned in an attempt to salvage copper wires, which are consequently resold. This process requires the burning of surrounding plastics, meaning that the smoke that is released is very harmful and straight-up toxic to human health. Nuclear waste, on the other hand, is carefully stored and managed. Using the highest levels of caution and safety, waste is contained in cement-filled drums and stored in secured facilities for decades or even centuries on end. When comparing this to the lacklustre way in which solar waste is simply ‘dumped atop the pile’ of electronic waste, it is not hard to see where we are doing something wrong. Solar panels contain a large number of dangerous materials, including lead, chromium and cadmium - not just harmful on direct impact, but also potentially capable of infiltrating drinking water supplies.   Actual dangers versus perceived dangers The dilemma is not as tough when carefully observing those facts. The share of nuclear energy in the world’s electricity market is larger, yet created using ‘less’. Less waste, less land area, less of an ecological and environmental footprint. While we are keen on implementing more solar and wind, the reality is that these energy sources are often showing far from rosy numbers below the line.   We would do well to move beyond this illusion of renewables and explore other zero-carbon sources of energy, in particular nuclear energy. There are relatively few drawbacks to this stable and secure source of energy, that has remained at the center of societal scrutiny since its earlier days. Nuclear energy is one way of tackling climate change in a meaningful manner - something that unfortunately cannot be said about wind or solar. It is time to make decisions based on facts rather than on dreams of renewables. Recomended: Man-Made Climate Change
Far too often, the debate on climate change shifts to one of fossil fuels versus renewable energy. If we were to completely let go of the ‘wasteful’ and switch to energy generated by natural elements such as wind, solar or waves, it would - or so it is alleged - save our planet. This thought has been at the center of the climate debate for more than 30 years, setting in motion large-scale renewable energy projects. However, looking at today’s landscape, we see that there isn’t a single nation that has completely shifted its energy needs to renewable sources. Some Scandinavian countries are well underway to realising a near-zero carbon electricity supply, but what stands out here, is the fact that renewables like solar and wind only make up a small percentage of this. It is a well-documented fact that the number of solar panels or wind turbines required to even come close to the amount of energy generated by ‘regular’ producers is massive. At the same time, these enormous grids required will lead to higher costs of generating electricity, huge amounts of energy required for its production, and leave behind a large environmental footprint. Additionally, it is a rather unreliable source of energy.   In short, solar and wind energy are not just falling short of what they ought to be producing in order to be an adequate replacement, they are also largely unnecessary when looking at the bigger picture. Which will, eventually, really be a good thing. Renewables history When listening to a regular climate change debate, one will be quick to conclude that renewable energy - in particular solar and wind energy - is a relatively new invention. Wind turbines have, after all, not been recorded in modern history as a common sight until recently. Yet the reality is that wind and sunlight are some of the oldest sources of energy that we have. Already back in 1833, a man named John Etzler was involved in a proposal that sought to construct solar power plants. These would employ mirrors to concentrate sunlight on boilers. Solar panels that are capable of generating electricity have even been mentioned in literature back in the late 1800s. The schools of thought were there, waiting to be picked up - but unfortunately being overrun by the power of coal and other fossil fuels. Yet renewables were never far from our mind, as there have been numerous mentions of solar energy in publications throughout the 20th century - pointing at it as the next ‘big thing’ in power generation. This started in 1891, with The New York Times reporting that solar energy is not yet economical in an article titled “ Solar Energy: What the Sun's Rays Can Do and May Yet Be Able to Do ”, in which it concluded "… the day is not unlikely to arrive before long… ”. Solar and wind energy revolution! Did it arrive? That day did arrive, yet it never really ‘caught on’, despite the hype being attributed to it by journalists and experts alike. In 1931, another journalist of The New York Times had discovered this ‘hidden treasure’, writing about “ the evolution of civilization similar to that which followed the invention by James Watt of the steam engine ”. In the following decades, renewables slowly got more attention and found themselves at the center of scientific and political debate, with subsidies, tax cuts and grants being thrown at it. Especially around the turn of the century, it seemed as if the ‘big breakthrough’ was waiting to happen - only waiting on that last bit of funding. A massive $2 trillion was spent on wind and solar energy combined between 2007 and 2016, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, with governments spending up to 100 times more on its subsidies than it did for nuclear and fossil fuels.   The results? Far from as impressive: in 2016, solar and wind generated energy only made up 1.3 and 3.9 percent of the earth’s total, respectively. ( Recommended :  Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades ) Denmark and Germany as role model? Of course, these numbers above are merely an average. Some countries, like Denmark, show more promising numbers for its decarbonisation process: where wind energy in particular is thriving, making up 48 percent of the total electricity in the country. Does this make them the role model for renewables that we need to create a blueprint for other countries as well? Well, it is important to understand the specific reasons why this tiny Scandinavian country was able to achieve this. Firstly, it is small. Really small. It has fewer than 6 million inhabitants, occupies a piece of land that can be crossed in only a few hours, and is a minor player on the world’s economic stage.   While small, it is located in a favourable region, with many European neighbours willing to import the excess wind energy generated, lowering the risk of a costly surplus. Regardless, Denmark’s electricity prices are still amongst the highest in the world. And while this is justified by claiming that the industry is one of its most important export products, it is still striking.   Areas that are deploying solar energy on a large scale have seen similar uptakes in electricity price. Denmark’s neighbour Germany has long boasted a status as the poster child of renewables, but is facing similar issues. Their electricity is the second most expensive in Europe, after Denmark, while emissions are not declining as much as they would like.   Danish Tax Minister Karsten Lauritzen said that the Government should rethink the level of tax on electricity consumption, which is currently the highest in Europe. According to the Tax Ministry, approximately 40 percent of a household electricity bill is tax but these revenues were and are nessecarry in Denmmark to subsidize the development of renewable energy. Carbon emissions least production: France and Sweden Therefore, measuring the share of solar and wind based energy sources in the total energy production will paint a somewhat misleading image - and show the inefficiency of solar and wind. A much better benchmark can be found when looking at the amount of carbon emissions per capita. Here, France and Sweden are ranking high. The surprising thing? While those countries have successfully cut their carbon emissions, they have done so by employing only limited wind and solar sources. Sweden is deriving 95 percent of its electricity from zero-carbon sources, and France 88 percent. What these sources are? Nuclear and hydroelectric power. Other countries, including Norway, Brazil and Costa Rica, have harnessed hydroelectric power in a similar fashion, effectively decarbonising their economies. Nuclear is slightly more scalable and reliable, compared to hydroelectricity’s relatively large environmental impact. Hydroelectricity, as demonstrated by Brazil and California, is inherently unreliable and will not let itself be steered, meaning that countries will have to fall back on fossil fuels if production unexpectedly falls short. Thus, nuclear energy appears to be the only zero-carbon source that is capable of saving our planet - it is scalable, reliable, and efficient. Renewables not necessary to save the climate   Good news, so far: we do not need renewables to solve climate change. Renewables require a lot of land and specific wasteful ‘ingredients’ like concrete, steel and glass for its production - nuclear plants only need a fraction of this.   {youtube}                                              The Illusions Of Renewables. Solar And Wind Will Not Save Our Climate To demonstrate this: solar panels have been shown to rake up to 300 times more toxic waste than nuclear energy. And even after having been produced in a wasteful manner, they still harm the environment by occupying large areas of land, threatening the local ecosystem - all in exchange for a relatively minor share of electricity. ( Recommended :  Solar Farms In Space: Next Step In Renewable Energy ) Are we headed for a solar waste crisis? While people are up in arms about nuclear waste, only very few really seem to be concerned about the concept of solar waste. And solar waste there is: most countries do not have an adequate plan for safely disposing this often toxic waste, while its pile is growing steadily. Nuclear waste makes all the alarm bells in our heads go off, while solar waste seems to be regarded with something akin to indifference. Solar waste versus nuclear   Let’s start with some cold, hard facts. Every unit of energy generated by solar creates 3000 times more toxic waste than a unit of energy generated by nuclear energy. To put it in a perspective that hits home: Environmental Progress calculated that, if all waste generated over the next 25 years would be stacked on a football field, the pile of nuclear waste would be about the same height as the Leaning Tower of Pisa (52 meters), while the solar waste pile would be as high as two Mt. Everests (16 km). Developing countries, on the other hand, are facing similar issues. China, India and Ghana are dealing with those living in communities near waste dumps. Here, waste is often burned in an attempt to salvage copper wires, which are consequently resold. This process requires the burning of surrounding plastics, meaning that the smoke that is released is very harmful and straight-up toxic to human health. Nuclear waste, on the other hand, is carefully stored and managed. Using the highest levels of caution and safety, waste is contained in cement-filled drums and stored in secured facilities for decades or even centuries on end. When comparing this to the lacklustre way in which solar waste is simply ‘dumped atop the pile’ of electronic waste, it is not hard to see where we are doing something wrong. Solar panels contain a large number of dangerous materials, including lead, chromium and cadmium - not just harmful on direct impact, but also potentially capable of infiltrating drinking water supplies.   Actual dangers versus perceived dangers The dilemma is not as tough when carefully observing those facts. The share of nuclear energy in the world’s electricity market is larger, yet created using ‘less’. Less waste, less land area, less of an ecological and environmental footprint. While we are keen on implementing more solar and wind, the reality is that these energy sources are often showing far from rosy numbers below the line.   We would do well to move beyond this illusion of renewables and explore other zero-carbon sources of energy, in particular nuclear energy. There are relatively few drawbacks to this stable and secure source of energy, that has remained at the center of societal scrutiny since its earlier days. Nuclear energy is one way of tackling climate change in a meaningful manner - something that unfortunately cannot be said about wind or solar. It is time to make decisions based on facts rather than on dreams of renewables. Recomended: Man-Made Climate Change
The Illusions Of Renewables. Solar And Wind Will Not Save Our Climate
The Illusions Of Renewables. Solar And Wind Will Not Save Our Climate
Airborne Wind Energy Systems: A New Way Of Energy Supply
Everyone uses energy. To keep ourselves alive, we need a certain amount of energy to provide for the human need for food and to do work. Energy, especially electricity, is essential to provide water, food, health care, education, employment and communication. But where does this energy actually come from? And how can we improve it? Problems in the current energy supply The most substantial amount of energy comes from fossil and nuclear fuels, which currently face serious difficulties, such as security of supply, economic affordability, environmental sustainability and disaster risks. In order to cope with these problems, we are looking for a solution to increase renewable energy technologies. For example, in recent decades there has been rapid growth and spread of renewable power plants. Among them, wind generators are the most widespread type of renewable energy. This trend continues and is a positive development. However, this could be different in the near future. There could be a saturation of windy areas inland. For this reason, the current research programmes are aimed at improving the power capacity per unit of land. This translates worldwide into the development of several wind turbines with improved nominal capacity. What are we doing worldwide? Worldwide, people are investigating what could be improved. Since the beginning of 2000, researchers have been looking at offshore installations. At these places located far enough from the coast, wind energy sources are generally larger those on land. Wind energy is stronger and more regular. This allows for more constant use and more accurate production planning. In this context, an entirely new renewable energy sector has emerged in the scientific community: AWE. What is AWE? Awe means Airborne Wind Energy . It is a new way of transforming wind energy. Airborne Wind Energy focuses on capturing wind energy at considerable heights, at least 500 meters! Machines that "capture" this type of power is referred to as Airborne Wind Energy Systems (AWES). The wind at this height is stronger, and the systems provide higher efficiency than the conventional wind turbines . Moreover, they are cheaper, less visible and can be used in places that are difficult to reach. This new way of transforming wind energy can reach layers of wind at enormous heights, utilising strapped wings or aircraft and drones. These are not accessible to traditional wind turbines. Research into these Airborne Wind Energy Systems started in the 1970s, but development has accelerated in the last decade. This new software of wind transformation was developed by researchers from the Carlos III University of Madrid. The Dutch startup Kitepower The focus on wind energy at high altitude is increasing. Researchers are exploring what is possible. The Dutch start-up Kitepower, founded by a research group at TU Delft, is developing an AWES based on kites to generate energy at high altitude. A 100kw system is now being designed that, for example, can replace diesel generators in isolated areas. Producing, transporting and installing wind turbines on land and at sea costs a lot more time and money compared to airborne wind energy solutions. Wind at an altitude of 200-450 meters is stronger and more constant than the wind that captures windmills. Kitepower is developing a power generating kite system for this source of renewable wind energy in the air. These kites are quiet, simple to install and easy to use. Kitepower uses less material than ground-based turbines, and it takes less than an hour to install them. Their kites float through a large part of the air, resulting in very powerful wind speeds. Most people rely on diesel generators, with a high dependency on expensive and logistically demanding diesel supplies. Kitepower offers a more durable, flexible and economical solution. With its logistical flexibility, Kitepower provides an excellent alternative when the conventional power supply is damaged. Kitepower focuses on the transformation of energy in the world. They want a world where renewable energy is accessible and affordable for everyone. Their development is still ongoing and needs some refinement. Hopefully, we will hear more about this in the near future. https://www.whatsorb.com/category/energy
Everyone uses energy. To keep ourselves alive, we need a certain amount of energy to provide for the human need for food and to do work. Energy, especially electricity, is essential to provide water, food, health care, education, employment and communication. But where does this energy actually come from? And how can we improve it? Problems in the current energy supply The most substantial amount of energy comes from fossil and nuclear fuels, which currently face serious difficulties, such as security of supply, economic affordability, environmental sustainability and disaster risks. In order to cope with these problems, we are looking for a solution to increase renewable energy technologies. For example, in recent decades there has been rapid growth and spread of renewable power plants. Among them, wind generators are the most widespread type of renewable energy. This trend continues and is a positive development. However, this could be different in the near future. There could be a saturation of windy areas inland. For this reason, the current research programmes are aimed at improving the power capacity per unit of land. This translates worldwide into the development of several wind turbines with improved nominal capacity. What are we doing worldwide? Worldwide, people are investigating what could be improved. Since the beginning of 2000, researchers have been looking at offshore installations. At these places located far enough from the coast, wind energy sources are generally larger those on land. Wind energy is stronger and more regular. This allows for more constant use and more accurate production planning. In this context, an entirely new renewable energy sector has emerged in the scientific community: AWE. What is AWE? Awe means Airborne Wind Energy . It is a new way of transforming wind energy. Airborne Wind Energy focuses on capturing wind energy at considerable heights, at least 500 meters! Machines that "capture" this type of power is referred to as Airborne Wind Energy Systems (AWES). The wind at this height is stronger, and the systems provide higher efficiency than the conventional wind turbines . Moreover, they are cheaper, less visible and can be used in places that are difficult to reach. This new way of transforming wind energy can reach layers of wind at enormous heights, utilising strapped wings or aircraft and drones. These are not accessible to traditional wind turbines. Research into these Airborne Wind Energy Systems started in the 1970s, but development has accelerated in the last decade. This new software of wind transformation was developed by researchers from the Carlos III University of Madrid. The Dutch startup Kitepower The focus on wind energy at high altitude is increasing. Researchers are exploring what is possible. The Dutch start-up Kitepower, founded by a research group at TU Delft, is developing an AWES based on kites to generate energy at high altitude. A 100kw system is now being designed that, for example, can replace diesel generators in isolated areas. Producing, transporting and installing wind turbines on land and at sea costs a lot more time and money compared to airborne wind energy solutions. Wind at an altitude of 200-450 meters is stronger and more constant than the wind that captures windmills. Kitepower is developing a power generating kite system for this source of renewable wind energy in the air. These kites are quiet, simple to install and easy to use. Kitepower uses less material than ground-based turbines, and it takes less than an hour to install them. Their kites float through a large part of the air, resulting in very powerful wind speeds. Most people rely on diesel generators, with a high dependency on expensive and logistically demanding diesel supplies. Kitepower offers a more durable, flexible and economical solution. With its logistical flexibility, Kitepower provides an excellent alternative when the conventional power supply is damaged. Kitepower focuses on the transformation of energy in the world. They want a world where renewable energy is accessible and affordable for everyone. Their development is still ongoing and needs some refinement. Hopefully, we will hear more about this in the near future. https://www.whatsorb.com/category/energy
Airborne Wind Energy Systems: A New Way Of Energy Supply
Airborne Wind Energy Systems: A New Way Of Energy Supply
Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades
In a much needed re-invention of wind turbines, Vortex Bladeless Wind Turbine has introduced a concept that has definitely made waves in the energy industry. Its unique bladeless turbine concept has been hailed as a technological leap forward and a resolution in the generation of wind power, that will not only make wind power simpler and more effective, it will also ultimately be more environmentally friendly. The Vortex wind turbine: bladeless windpower generator. Vortex bladeless wind turbine how it works The official description of Vortex Bladeless’ product is quite a mouthful: a vortex induced vibration resonant wind generator. It is a way of generating energy using a vorticity phenomenon called Vortex Shedding. In layman’s terms, this is the generation of energy from the spinning motion of air. This basic principle uses cylindrical turbines, which will allow for the development of a spinning whirlpool or vortex when wind passes through it. {youtube}                                                    Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades As the cylinder swings back and forth in the wind ('oscillates'), it will be subject to sufficient force to find itself vibrating quite heavily, all while remaining fixed to an elastic rod. Using a linear generator, that is quite similar to the one used for harnessing wave energy, this kinetic energy can be captured and used.   Vortex bladeless turbine resembles other forms of renewable energy In fact, some have argued that the Vortex Wind Turbine is not quite a wind turbine per se, as it more closely resembles other forms of renewable energy generation. Either way, it has been deemed promising enough to be awarded a grant under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation fund ( Read also: Is The EU United To Fight Climate Change ) . One of the most obvious selling points is that it provides a clean source of energy, as it uses advanced technology to harvest energy from an aeroelastic oscillation movement.   Yet at the same time, its largest advantage in comparison to other forms of wind energy would have to be its reduced costs: it requires no gears, bearings or other expensive parts that could easily break and need expensive replacement. Simultaneously, it does not require any oil or intensive maintenance. In fact, costs for manufacturing, operating and maintaining the Vortex will be way down. Adding to the previous point, it is worth noting that the lower costs of the Vortex Wind Turbine also extend to the costs of its effect on the environment at large. The construction and development of this source of wind energy requires much less energy and takes up less space. Production is simple and swift, with a minimal impact on the surrounding area. It is quiet, blends in, does not require contaminants and will not harm birds or in any other way impact the ecosystem it is placed in - according to the official Vortex website. Vortex bladeless wind turbine for grid and off-grid operations Not many people would be happy to place a wind turbine ( Read also: Wind Turbine From Wood: Made By EAZ Wind, Netherlands ) in their backyard, especially in densely populated areas. It takes up a massive amount of space and would lead to obvious complaints from those living around you. Yet you will find that it is very easy to place a Vortex Bladeless in your area. It is perfectly suited for on-site energy generation through its light weight, simple installation, self-running capacity and limited space required. This is why the manufacturer has been targeting end-consumers, making it available for grid and off-grid operations, as well as offering hybrid models that allow for integration with, for instance, solar panels. The costs for generating energy are, according to one of the founders, brought down by 40% when compared to conventional forms of wind energy. It is capable of reaching a conversion efficiency of 70 percent - which definitely not excessively high and somewhat lagging behind when compared to their bladed brothers, but a good proposition nonetheless. The actual potential of the Vortex Bladeless wind turbines There are quite a few researchers who question the actual effectiveness of the Vortex Bladeless Wind Turbine. Aside from the somewhat limited conversion efficiency, as oscillating cylinders are not capable of converting much of their energy into electricity, there is the question of feasibility of on-site use. In order to generate sufficient energy, the pole-shaped turbine would have to be of a significant size, while an aeronautics professor at MIT questions its claim of being silent. “ The oscillating frequencies that shake the cylinder will make noise. It will sound like a freight train coming through your wind farm,” she remarks. Does this mean that the concept is flawed? Not necessarily. Most innovations are met with trepidation and concerns when first introduced. It is up to the community to come up with ways of building on the existing idea to improve it further. That is how we ended up with massive wind and solar farms as they are. Why not apply this to innovative solutions that simply remove the blades from the wind turbines?  ( Read also: Wind Turbines With Built-In Hydroelectric batteries: Germany ) Read also: All Energy Solutions
In a much needed re-invention of wind turbines, Vortex Bladeless Wind Turbine has introduced a concept that has definitely made waves in the energy industry. Its unique bladeless turbine concept has been hailed as a technological leap forward and a resolution in the generation of wind power, that will not only make wind power simpler and more effective, it will also ultimately be more environmentally friendly. The Vortex wind turbine: bladeless windpower generator. Vortex bladeless wind turbine how it works The official description of Vortex Bladeless’ product is quite a mouthful: a vortex induced vibration resonant wind generator. It is a way of generating energy using a vorticity phenomenon called Vortex Shedding. In layman’s terms, this is the generation of energy from the spinning motion of air. This basic principle uses cylindrical turbines, which will allow for the development of a spinning whirlpool or vortex when wind passes through it. {youtube}                                                    Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades As the cylinder swings back and forth in the wind ('oscillates'), it will be subject to sufficient force to find itself vibrating quite heavily, all while remaining fixed to an elastic rod. Using a linear generator, that is quite similar to the one used for harnessing wave energy, this kinetic energy can be captured and used.   Vortex bladeless turbine resembles other forms of renewable energy In fact, some have argued that the Vortex Wind Turbine is not quite a wind turbine per se, as it more closely resembles other forms of renewable energy generation. Either way, it has been deemed promising enough to be awarded a grant under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation fund ( Read also: Is The EU United To Fight Climate Change ) . One of the most obvious selling points is that it provides a clean source of energy, as it uses advanced technology to harvest energy from an aeroelastic oscillation movement.   Yet at the same time, its largest advantage in comparison to other forms of wind energy would have to be its reduced costs: it requires no gears, bearings or other expensive parts that could easily break and need expensive replacement. Simultaneously, it does not require any oil or intensive maintenance. In fact, costs for manufacturing, operating and maintaining the Vortex will be way down. Adding to the previous point, it is worth noting that the lower costs of the Vortex Wind Turbine also extend to the costs of its effect on the environment at large. The construction and development of this source of wind energy requires much less energy and takes up less space. Production is simple and swift, with a minimal impact on the surrounding area. It is quiet, blends in, does not require contaminants and will not harm birds or in any other way impact the ecosystem it is placed in - according to the official Vortex website. Vortex bladeless wind turbine for grid and off-grid operations Not many people would be happy to place a wind turbine ( Read also: Wind Turbine From Wood: Made By EAZ Wind, Netherlands ) in their backyard, especially in densely populated areas. It takes up a massive amount of space and would lead to obvious complaints from those living around you. Yet you will find that it is very easy to place a Vortex Bladeless in your area. It is perfectly suited for on-site energy generation through its light weight, simple installation, self-running capacity and limited space required. This is why the manufacturer has been targeting end-consumers, making it available for grid and off-grid operations, as well as offering hybrid models that allow for integration with, for instance, solar panels. The costs for generating energy are, according to one of the founders, brought down by 40% when compared to conventional forms of wind energy. It is capable of reaching a conversion efficiency of 70 percent - which definitely not excessively high and somewhat lagging behind when compared to their bladed brothers, but a good proposition nonetheless. The actual potential of the Vortex Bladeless wind turbines There are quite a few researchers who question the actual effectiveness of the Vortex Bladeless Wind Turbine. Aside from the somewhat limited conversion efficiency, as oscillating cylinders are not capable of converting much of their energy into electricity, there is the question of feasibility of on-site use. In order to generate sufficient energy, the pole-shaped turbine would have to be of a significant size, while an aeronautics professor at MIT questions its claim of being silent. “ The oscillating frequencies that shake the cylinder will make noise. It will sound like a freight train coming through your wind farm,” she remarks. Does this mean that the concept is flawed? Not necessarily. Most innovations are met with trepidation and concerns when first introduced. It is up to the community to come up with ways of building on the existing idea to improve it further. That is how we ended up with massive wind and solar farms as they are. Why not apply this to innovative solutions that simply remove the blades from the wind turbines?  ( Read also: Wind Turbines With Built-In Hydroelectric batteries: Germany ) Read also: All Energy Solutions
Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades
Vortex Wind Turbine: Energy Generator Without Blades
Go With The Wind: Patent Pending For Small Spherical Wind Turbine
Recently, I came across an article that discussed a new patent that is pending for the so-called O-Wind concept. This is explained by its developers as being a omnidirectional wind turbine. Say what? Yes, that is right - a wind turbine that can catch winds coming in from all directions and will no longer depend on the good graces of Mother Nature or expensive and time-consuming ways of letting the turbine face the right direction.   The O-Wind turbine was developed as part of the challenge set by the organisation behind the James Dyson Award. This annual award, bringing along a monetary prize of € 35,000, seeks to encourage young inventors and developers to come up with solutions that might make the world a better place.   The futuristic O-Wind turbine captures wind from all directions This year, British entrepreneurs Nicolas Orellana and Yaseen Noorani saw themselves victorious on the award night with their concept for a spherical, small  wind turbine that is able to capture wind, no matter what direction it is coming from. It is futuristic, slick, unconventional and only measures a incredible 25 cm in diameter. Through geometric ports, it takes in wind; that it subsequently converts to energy that can directly be used in the surrounding area. Photo by: James Dyson Award The applications for this invention seem endless and very promising: it is small and functional enough to serve crowded, urban areas, while it makes optimal use of the often unpredictable wind in those large cities. When attached to someone’s balcony, it might just serve to deliver at least a significant portion of that household’s needs - or feed the energy needs of the larger community. As explained by inventor Orellana: “We hope that O-Wind Turbine will improve the usability and affordability of turbines for people across the world. Cities are windy places but we are currently not harnessing this resource. Our belief is that making it easier to generate green energy, people will be encouraged to play a bigger own role in conserving our planet.” Combining science and great engineering The basic idea of the O-Wind is pretty nifty. For its mechanical motion, it effectively employs Bernoulli’s principle, where the sphere-shaped turbine relies on differences in air pressure to generate its momentum. It has a large number of vents that the wind could run through, using three dimensions. These vents are placed all across the sphere, allowing it to function no matter what direction the wind is coming from.   And once the wind reaches the turbine, it will enter through larger entrances and use smaller exits. When it is windy, the pressure difference between those two terminals will lead to movement in the form of rotation. The movement, in turn, will be used to feed a generator. This produces electricity that can be used locally or fed back to the regional or national grid, to be used at a time of shortage. For this, the owners of the turbines will receive a financial reward - another incentive for installing such a nifty turbine, while increasing the share of sustainable energy. Its functionality makes it particularly suitable for, for instance, apartment buildings in urban areas, where winds can be erratic due to tall architectural buildings throwing it in chaos. The small size, probably best compared to a balloon or Chinese lantern, requires very little maintenance, while very little space is required for its installation. Another plus for urban use. It could quite literally be perched on top of anyone’s roof or the side of a building. Next steps in  wind energy Innovations such as the O-Wind can bring urban energy harvesting to the next level. While Orellana and Noorani are currently developing and prototyping their spherical turbine and lining up investors, there are multiple other start-ups working hard to bring new, feasible alternatives to the market as well. A fascinating initiative would be that of Maya Power, a fellow British company, that uses the wind in the tunnels of the London Underground to generate energy, using a flexible fabric. Or the smart wind turbine of Italian-based start-up Enessere, that learns from the wind patterns to optimise the power generated. Wind energy is something that most people will find themselves drawn to, yet not many will applaud the idea of having a huge turbine in their backyard. This is why these smaller initiatives should be encouraged and cheered on: they are looking into ways of making wind energy accessible for all, whether it is from the use of tiny wind turbines, the O-Wind’s spherical turbines or other creative ways of harnessing the power of the wind. https://www.whatsorb.com/category/energy
Recently, I came across an article that discussed a new patent that is pending for the so-called O-Wind concept. This is explained by its developers as being a omnidirectional wind turbine. Say what? Yes, that is right - a wind turbine that can catch winds coming in from all directions and will no longer depend on the good graces of Mother Nature or expensive and time-consuming ways of letting the turbine face the right direction.   The O-Wind turbine was developed as part of the challenge set by the organisation behind the James Dyson Award. This annual award, bringing along a monetary prize of € 35,000, seeks to encourage young inventors and developers to come up with solutions that might make the world a better place.   The futuristic O-Wind turbine captures wind from all directions This year, British entrepreneurs Nicolas Orellana and Yaseen Noorani saw themselves victorious on the award night with their concept for a spherical, small  wind turbine that is able to capture wind, no matter what direction it is coming from. It is futuristic, slick, unconventional and only measures a incredible 25 cm in diameter. Through geometric ports, it takes in wind; that it subsequently converts to energy that can directly be used in the surrounding area. Photo by: James Dyson Award The applications for this invention seem endless and very promising: it is small and functional enough to serve crowded, urban areas, while it makes optimal use of the often unpredictable wind in those large cities. When attached to someone’s balcony, it might just serve to deliver at least a significant portion of that household’s needs - or feed the energy needs of the larger community. As explained by inventor Orellana: “We hope that O-Wind Turbine will improve the usability and affordability of turbines for people across the world. Cities are windy places but we are currently not harnessing this resource. Our belief is that making it easier to generate green energy, people will be encouraged to play a bigger own role in conserving our planet.” Combining science and great engineering The basic idea of the O-Wind is pretty nifty. For its mechanical motion, it effectively employs Bernoulli’s principle, where the sphere-shaped turbine relies on differences in air pressure to generate its momentum. It has a large number of vents that the wind could run through, using three dimensions. These vents are placed all across the sphere, allowing it to function no matter what direction the wind is coming from.   And once the wind reaches the turbine, it will enter through larger entrances and use smaller exits. When it is windy, the pressure difference between those two terminals will lead to movement in the form of rotation. The movement, in turn, will be used to feed a generator. This produces electricity that can be used locally or fed back to the regional or national grid, to be used at a time of shortage. For this, the owners of the turbines will receive a financial reward - another incentive for installing such a nifty turbine, while increasing the share of sustainable energy. Its functionality makes it particularly suitable for, for instance, apartment buildings in urban areas, where winds can be erratic due to tall architectural buildings throwing it in chaos. The small size, probably best compared to a balloon or Chinese lantern, requires very little maintenance, while very little space is required for its installation. Another plus for urban use. It could quite literally be perched on top of anyone’s roof or the side of a building. Next steps in  wind energy Innovations such as the O-Wind can bring urban energy harvesting to the next level. While Orellana and Noorani are currently developing and prototyping their spherical turbine and lining up investors, there are multiple other start-ups working hard to bring new, feasible alternatives to the market as well. A fascinating initiative would be that of Maya Power, a fellow British company, that uses the wind in the tunnels of the London Underground to generate energy, using a flexible fabric. Or the smart wind turbine of Italian-based start-up Enessere, that learns from the wind patterns to optimise the power generated. Wind energy is something that most people will find themselves drawn to, yet not many will applaud the idea of having a huge turbine in their backyard. This is why these smaller initiatives should be encouraged and cheered on: they are looking into ways of making wind energy accessible for all, whether it is from the use of tiny wind turbines, the O-Wind’s spherical turbines or other creative ways of harnessing the power of the wind. https://www.whatsorb.com/category/energy
Go With The Wind: Patent Pending For Small Spherical Wind Turbine
Go With The Wind: Patent Pending For Small Spherical Wind Turbine
Wind Turbine From Wood: Made By EAZ-Wind, Netherlands
A ‘wooden mill’ will undoubtedly bring up associations of the age-old, traditional mills of the Dutch type. Fierce, imposing wooden structures towering over the surrounding landscapes. Quite often, the wind turbines that are so common today pale in comparison. They stand out, with their unnatural materials and shapes. That is, until EAZ developed their unique wooden wind turbines. EAZ  wind turbines This Netherlands-based company, originating from the rural area of Groningen, wanted to develop a wind turbine that could easily be set up in densely populated areas. Normally, some of these areas cannot afford an actual wind turbine. Not only are they too expensive, due to the expensive materials and the complicated process of installing and servicing it, they are also facing heavy resistance from the community.   Effectively, this makes it hard to make wind energy solutions available in areas that do not have the required funds or social support. The only options left are solar panels or water power, which are usually not sufficient for providing in the electricity needs of the immediate area either.   As the need for renewable energy grows, so does the need for solutions that actually fit in to the area. And while ‘traditional’ wind turbines often do not fit in, the unique versions created by EAZ manage to blend in seamlessly. The design for their wind turbines have been made simpler, and much more cost-effective. Production is all performed in-house, using local labour and materials. As such, it will not nearly be as expensive to get the wind turbines produced. These materials, sourced locally, include a number of sustainable components from natural sources - including the blades, which are made of larch wood and finished with fibreglass. The stabiliser is also made of wood, with an internal frame of steel for reinforcement.   Maintenance and installation Not only are the materials largely sustainable, they are also chosen as they are relatively maintenance-free. For example, it also has a permanent magnet, a ring generator without gearbox, which means that there is no friction. The steel mast comes with a double coating, making it more durable. The installation is performed quickly and with a minimal impact for the environment. For the generation of energy, the wind turbine will be connected to the fuse box right behind the electricity meter, resulting in further savings on the purchase price of electricity as well as energy tax. Support of local community In another clever move, EAZ wind turbines decided to take the development process to the local authorities and communities. With this, they guaranteed their support and made sure that the eventual design would fit in the landscape.   As the home turf of EAZ - the Dutch province of Groningen - is rapidly growing and expanding, as reflected by the improving economy, the region is becoming increasingly self-sustaining. More and more jobs are being created, putting pressure on local entrepreneurs to find ways of generating more energy in an efficient and sustainable manner. Placement of  wind turbine One of their options is the purchase of one of these wind turbines, made easier because of the reduced cost price and lower impact on the environment. This way, it can be installed on a farm to provide in the energy needs. Secondly, people could opt for joining an initiative where they invest in a common wind turbine for the entire village. In this case, everyone in the area can directly benefit from the locally generated wind energy. Although these wind turbines might be better looking, it is still an infringement on the landscape. Therefore, EAZ has pledged to take great care in fitting it into the landscape. The already existing elements and lines are being taken into consideration, while the limited height ensures that it is less conspicuous. Why does any of it matter? All well and good, but why would it matter what a wind turbine looks like? What does EAZ offer in an already crowded market that makes them stand out? Their continued success is a testament to the importance of keeping aesthetics and user demands in mind, so that wind turbines become more of a community product. The lower installation and maintenance costs, its adaptability to the landscape, and the decent yield: it adds up to a great proposition that is ready to scale up. After all, the truth of the matter is that the general opinion of wind turbines is still far from favourable. Perhaps unjustly so, but that does not make it any more urgent. EAZ should be commanded for their attempts to sway the public opinion through making wind turbines more accessible and friendly. https://www.whatsorb.com/solution/energy/wind
A ‘wooden mill’ will undoubtedly bring up associations of the age-old, traditional mills of the Dutch type. Fierce, imposing wooden structures towering over the surrounding landscapes. Quite often, the wind turbines that are so common today pale in comparison. They stand out, with their unnatural materials and shapes. That is, until EAZ developed their unique wooden wind turbines. EAZ  wind turbines This Netherlands-based company, originating from the rural area of Groningen, wanted to develop a wind turbine that could easily be set up in densely populated areas. Normally, some of these areas cannot afford an actual wind turbine. Not only are they too expensive, due to the expensive materials and the complicated process of installing and servicing it, they are also facing heavy resistance from the community.   Effectively, this makes it hard to make wind energy solutions available in areas that do not have the required funds or social support. The only options left are solar panels or water power, which are usually not sufficient for providing in the electricity needs of the immediate area either.   As the need for renewable energy grows, so does the need for solutions that actually fit in to the area. And while ‘traditional’ wind turbines often do not fit in, the unique versions created by EAZ manage to blend in seamlessly. The design for their wind turbines have been made simpler, and much more cost-effective. Production is all performed in-house, using local labour and materials. As such, it will not nearly be as expensive to get the wind turbines produced. These materials, sourced locally, include a number of sustainable components from natural sources - including the blades, which are made of larch wood and finished with fibreglass. The stabiliser is also made of wood, with an internal frame of steel for reinforcement.   Maintenance and installation Not only are the materials largely sustainable, they are also chosen as they are relatively maintenance-free. For example, it also has a permanent magnet, a ring generator without gearbox, which means that there is no friction. The steel mast comes with a double coating, making it more durable. The installation is performed quickly and with a minimal impact for the environment. For the generation of energy, the wind turbine will be connected to the fuse box right behind the electricity meter, resulting in further savings on the purchase price of electricity as well as energy tax. Support of local community In another clever move, EAZ wind turbines decided to take the development process to the local authorities and communities. With this, they guaranteed their support and made sure that the eventual design would fit in the landscape.   As the home turf of EAZ - the Dutch province of Groningen - is rapidly growing and expanding, as reflected by the improving economy, the region is becoming increasingly self-sustaining. More and more jobs are being created, putting pressure on local entrepreneurs to find ways of generating more energy in an efficient and sustainable manner. Placement of  wind turbine One of their options is the purchase of one of these wind turbines, made easier because of the reduced cost price and lower impact on the environment. This way, it can be installed on a farm to provide in the energy needs. Secondly, people could opt for joining an initiative where they invest in a common wind turbine for the entire village. In this case, everyone in the area can directly benefit from the locally generated wind energy. Although these wind turbines might be better looking, it is still an infringement on the landscape. Therefore, EAZ has pledged to take great care in fitting it into the landscape. The already existing elements and lines are being taken into consideration, while the limited height ensures that it is less conspicuous. Why does any of it matter? All well and good, but why would it matter what a wind turbine looks like? What does EAZ offer in an already crowded market that makes them stand out? Their continued success is a testament to the importance of keeping aesthetics and user demands in mind, so that wind turbines become more of a community product. The lower installation and maintenance costs, its adaptability to the landscape, and the decent yield: it adds up to a great proposition that is ready to scale up. After all, the truth of the matter is that the general opinion of wind turbines is still far from favourable. Perhaps unjustly so, but that does not make it any more urgent. EAZ should be commanded for their attempts to sway the public opinion through making wind turbines more accessible and friendly. https://www.whatsorb.com/solution/energy/wind
Wind Turbine From Wood: Made By EAZ-Wind, Netherlands
Wind Turbine From Wood: Made By EAZ-Wind, Netherlands
Energy

Fossil fuels are non-renewable, they draw on finite resources that will eventually dwindle, becoming too expensive or too environmentally damaging to retrieve. In contrast, the many types of renewable energy resources such as wind and solar energy are constantly replenished and will never run out.
Wind turbines and solar panels are an increasingly common sight. But why? What are the benefits of renewable energies and how do they improve our health, environment, and economy?

The WhatsOrb category ‘Energy’ explores and shows the many positive impacts of clean energy, including the benefits of windsolar and geothermal. Next to it critical articles about nuclear and unknown energy sources.

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