We saw this ‘alternative to wind turbines’ story a couple of weeks ago and though that this could be the most fun way of generating renewable energy!
Scientists at the aerospace engineering department of the Technology University in Delft believe that kites – just 25 square metres in area – could generate enough electricity for 40 households, operating hundreds of metres in the air.
The theory is that while wind farm turbines normally operate at up to 200 metres, kites can fly much higher, enabling them to benefit from more constant wind speeds, rather than intermittent wind nearer to the ground.
What’s more, they are much cheaper as they need less material than a wind turbine and instead of a steel tower, they use a system that looks and works like a yo-yo. As the kite rises, the traction power of the sail pulls a cable from a drum that drives a generator on the ground.
The technology is still in development phase and faces many challenges (including interference with flight routes!), but maybe one day we’ll see less ‘wind turbine farms’ and more ‘wind kite farms’.
To read the full story visit http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/blog/2013/jul/10/flying-kite-aerial-wind-power