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The world's first airborne wind turbine brings power to remote areas.


Altaeros Energies, an alternative energy supply company, announces their BAT (Buoyant Airborne Turbine) system that uses lightweight materials to harness the power of wind. Its first commercial application will be with the Alaska Energy Authority in 2014.


What do you guys think of high altitude wind energy?

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Design Looks Good

At first I thought it seemed like only a novelty. But I think the design is better than modern windmills.

The materials look very cheap to build; it would take far less resources to build than a standard windmill.


if you can take this down during a thunderstorm and how fast?

If H2 is indeed used to lift the turbine then it would only require one spark to set this baby up in flames.

Otherwise the concept is brilliant!

His name is Edward Snowden

What is Capitalism?

My thoughts

It's ironic that people that claim to want to save the earth want to dam the rivers, stop the wind, and blind the sun. It's just a thought and not directed at the poster in particular.

When every house had a water tower

The water towers had fans, to pump the water, and most fans back then were made of wood.. History suggests that when the population grew to the point that the fans were too loud for comfort, it led to ghost towns, some were resurected.. like Mendocino

Mendocino’s Unique Water Towers
For more than a century, Mendocino water towers and accompanying windmills have captured the attention of visitors and writers alike. In 1892, one reporter observed during her stay, “an individuality about the water works of this town not found in any other place.”

Early settlers were blessed with plentiful water supplies from nearby creeks and rivers, which facilitated the luxury of piped water into the house. All one needed was a windmill tall enough to catch coastal breezes to power the pumps, and a tank positioned high enough to provide adequate water pressure.

Today, most of the windmills have disappeared, but dozens of towers are left standing, ranging from completely restored to a few precariously leaning. Others have been converted into service for such purposes as an artist studio, rental unit or gift shop. You can learn more about the preservation of these unique structures by visiting the Kelley House Museum.


Hydrogen is very hard to contain

since it is so small. This is also a big problem with hydrogen fuel cell technology. In H-fuel cells technology you have to have metal containers that are very thick (heavy) to contain the hydrogen. Even then a lot still leaks out. I know people do contain hydrogen for multiple purposes but my assumption would be that you could keep this lifted long term because of leaks.

The one major problem with

The one major problem with this is that it uses helium. Helium is not an abundant resource on earth and there is no way they would ever be able to get enough of it to have more than a few of these(few being relative, it would be a large number, but not that large).

To climb the mountain, you must believe you can.

Helium is NOT a Problem, its an Asset

America has LOTS of Helium.

Hydrogen is a Problem, Think Hindenburg.

The reason they used hydrogen in the Hindenburg is.

America would not sell the Germans any Helium.

Why not use hydrogen to provide the lift?

I'm thinking Hydrogen has twice the lift as it's lighter than Helium, it's unmanned so if it catches on fire it wouldn't be that bad. I'm sure the design could make fire very unlikely, but if it did catch on fire the fire will go up and out in the wind, much the same as flaring natural gas at the well head. There is more hydrogen on this planet than any other element, plus with the electrical current it could generate it's own Hydrogen with electrolysis to replace any leakage.

Even if you could do hydrogen...

If they were to catch fire it would scare the crap out of people and be horrible pr. Even though I agree, it would not likely do any damage cause it is unmanned and would probably hover over open land.

Also, the biggest danger of fire would be before launch, when people are near it.

That's a great wind energy innovation!

I wonder if this will make the land based windmills outdated? I can see this design would be much cheaper and more efficient than the conventional designs, plus it probably chops up fewer birds too.

If I was a bird I'd call that a blender.

Yup. Imagine that whole flock of geese going into one of those and feathers flying out the other side.

Be brave, be brave, the Myan pilot needs no aeroplane.

The birds arnt going to get

The birds arnt going to get sucked into the thing; if the wind was blowing that hard, I doubt any would be flying to begin with.
The simple solution to stopping bird strikes is to simply put a large mesh over the front.(hole size something like a few inches)

To climb the mountain, you must believe you can.

Why is that funny? LOL

Maybe they could put a nylon screen over the draft in part?