Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Tethered Sky Generators

Sky WindPower Corporation

I like the "hat tip" credit I first saw on Eugene Volokh's blog. So, hat tip to Wired News.

"An array of 600 Flying Electric Generators rated at 20MW each, a total of twelve thousand megawatts in capacity, operating over a ground space of a ten by twenty mile rectangle, would produce approximately three times as many megawatt hours per year as the 28,572,902 MWh produced by [Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station] in the year 2003, the most electricity produced by a single generating plant in the U.S. that year."

Sounds good to me.

I have a couple of questions about wind energy. One is the net energy question. The other is the energetic and financial cost of overcoming intermittence. There are other question, too, of course.

By vastly reducing the need for storage and redundance to overcome intermittence, the tethered wind generator addresses both of my major concerns. Whether or not it's enough is still an open question, but intuition says it just might be enough for this scheme to yield substantial positive net energy, a key requirement for sustainability.


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