01 September 2006

Australian answer to nuclear power

Quoting from here:

His former clients have run out of puff, but Arthur O’Connor hopes his new invention does not.

The ex-funeral director has developed a slient, micro-wind [1m diameter] turbine that could revolutionise sustainable energy in Australia.

Mr O’Connor, who left school at 14, said the internationally patented device could potentially halve residential electricity bills.

He has had no engineering training and spent 23 years fine-tuning the Hush Energy turbine.

“If we had one of these on every home we wouldn’t need to worry about nuclear power or anything,” Mr O’Connor said.

...now quoting from here:

Power output for the turbine has resulted in much higher power generation than previously recorded. With a wind speed of 15 metres per second (54 km/hour), output has increased from approximately 680 watts to 915 watts, based on a 1 metre diameter model.

One of the best results of the testing was the increase in the performance of the turbine in moving towards higher efficiencies in producing power. The previous “coefficient of performance” (Cp) measurement reached a maximum of 0.42; this time the maximum result was 0.51. This is the result that has the O’Connor Hush Turbine’s developer, Arthur O’Connor, extremely excited.

...and WRT the Cp, other wind sites note 0.35 as “for a good design” and considering that it’s facing a “Betz limit” at 0.593, 0.51’s an impressive performance for something not built by the USAF (-: and I take it as read that it would use a lot less fuel :-) especially something so quiet and robust.

Unfortunately, it has international patents on it (it’s a mechanical invention, what else is the guy to do?) but on the other hand is available up to 5m diameter, which model produces 17kW with the old-style electronics (which implies a 35% increase under the new, or roughly 23kW) before 15m/s winds.

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