Magenn Air Rotor System: Wind Power Energy Solutions
The Magenn Air Rotor System (MARS) is a lighter-than-air tethered wind turbine that produces renewable energy. Marketed as a ‘Wind Power Anywhere’ solution to energy problems, it can be used in a wide variety of situations. The new design from MAGENN Power has many advantages over the conventional wind turbines and diesel generators typically used to produce energy, including cost and environmental benefits.
What is the Magenn Air Rotor System?
The Magenn Air Rotor System (MARS), is a high altitude wind turbine kept afloat by helium. Essentially, it is a little blimp, tethered to an electrical ground station, that generates clean, renewable energy at a low cost.
Wind power is one the cheapest renewable energy technologies on offer, and has the potential to create an abundant amount of green energy. As one expert notes,
‘There is enough energy in high altitude winds to power civilization 100 times over; and sooner or later we’re going to learn to tap into the power of winds and use it to run civilization.’
The Magenn Air Rotor System is one step in that direction - it’s a wind turbine that can be used to create green energy anywhere.
How does the MARS work?
The MARS is not particularly complex. The unit consists of a helium-filled blimp with rotating generators at each end. Fans attached to the blimp initially catch the wind and get the unit spinning on its horizontal axis.
Once it is spinning, the rotation movement produces the Magnus Effect (forces that cause spinning objects, such as golf balls and baseballs, to curve in the air) which generates extra lift. The unit also has a rudder that keeps it stable and makes sure it is always pointing into the wind.
When the Magenn Air Rotor System is in the air and the blades are rotating nicely, it generates power. This power is transferred down insulated cords which are tethered to an energy station on the ground. Once in the station, the energy can be used immediately, stored in batteries for later use, or transferred onto the power grid.
It is designed to capture wind in the 600 to 1000 foot low level and nocturnal jet streams that exist around the world, meaning it can be used anywhere. These are also consistent wind levels that most standard wind turbines cannot reach.
As well as catching wind from a higher altitude than most wind generators, the Magenn Air Rotor System is also safe to use in higher speed winds than most conventional generators can cope with. Yet that doesn’t mean it needs strong wind to operate - a wind speed of just 1 meter/second is enough to get it going.
Advantages of the Magenn Air Rotor System
All in all, the MARS can start at low wind speeds, continue to function at high wind speeds, and take advantage of wind levels that standard wind generators cannot reach. Moreover, when combined with a diesel generator, it is more efficient and cheaper than diesel generator-only solutions to energy problems.
Advantages over conventional wind turbinesLocation
Unlike conventional wind turbines, the Magenn Air Rotor System is not restricted by location. It is small so does not require lots of space. It also does not need to be placed along the coastline or at off-shore locations in order to get the needed wind speed to generate power.Mobility
Again, as the MARS is small, it is easy to move around. It is also very easy to set up, being deployed, deflated and redeployed quickly, compared to standard turbines that require big towers or cranes.Better for the environment
Wind turbines can be an eyesore and many people complain that they ruin the countryside. With the Magenn Air Rotor System, as it is both small and located in the air, it does not impact natural views in the same way. It also has much lower noise emissions than conventional turbines and is bird and bat friendly.Efficiency
As previously mentioned, the MARS can function in a much wider range of wind speeds (4mph to greater than 60 mph) than conventional turbines. Its low start speed and ability to function in high wind speeds mean it can operate in a greater variety of weather.
Advantages over a diesel only generator
When used in conjunction with a diesel generator, the Magenn Air Rotor System has many advantages over just using a diesel generator to provide energy solutions.Cost
Using wind and diesel power together can deliver energy at less than 20 cents per Kilowatt Hour (kWh), whereas energy produced from just using a diesel generator costs anywhere between 25 and 99 cents per kWh. The higher costs of a diesel only approach reflect the high fuel and transportation costs of diesel generators, something that the MARS does not require. It is also more expensive to handle and store a diesel generator.Pollution
Combining the renewable energy generated by wind power with the non-renewable energy produced by diesel generators is obviously more environmentally friendly than simply using diesel generators. The combined option creates less pollution and fewer greenhouse gas emissions.
Target markets for the MARS
The Magenn Air Rotor System has been designed for use in a number of different markets. These are:
- Developing nations where infrastructure is limited to non existent.
- Areas/situations that require off-grid combined wind and diesel energy solutions, such as islands, farms, remote places and cell towers, or to power exploration equipment, and backup power and water pumps for natural gas mines.
- Rapid deployment wind and diesel solutions (including airdrop) to disaster areas in order to power emergency and medical equipment.
- On-grid applications for factories, farms and remote communities.
- Wind farm deployments.
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