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has anyone considered a DIY design for a weather baloon wind turbine Like the Mars wind turbine? Answered

Hi the mars windturbine seems to be a simple idea take a weather baloon add fins allow the baloon to spin bottom over top and connect generators and cable to the ends. It has a stableiser in the center. It would almost make sence to make one by doing. What are good recourses for that? Where can I find more information on it?

Here is the link to the MARS turbine site. http://www.magenn.com/

3 Replies

seandogue (author)2009-11-18

It's an interesting idea for portable power, but I suspect that it won't fair well when competing with fixed towers, at least not in areas that can support towers. Cabling is a question I'd have...You have to get the power down from there...Helium is an issue as well.

I couldn't get away with flying something like that around here anyway, since the air space above my home is a well used flight path for medical helicopters to/from the Cleveland Clinic and University Hospital complexes ~1 mile away. Although I *think that technically, they have to stay above 500ft, the helicopters routinely fly well below the 1000ft mark (and I suspect from observation that they also routinely drop below 500ft).

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Kiteman (author)2009-11-18

Ignore the balloon aspect, and this is a rotor kite.

A little-used concept, they fly remarkably well in strong winds.  I built one out of corrugated card similar to this, and it flew stably in a driving rain-storm.

I would think that a large, four-vane rotor kite could provide some generating capability, but the loads on the bearings would make it prone to catastrophic failure - as soon as it stops turning, it will fall out of the sky.

Instead, if was making a kite-based generator, I would start with a large compound box, such as a Cody, and suspend a turbine within the framework.

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DELETED_GuardianFox (author)2009-11-18

Well their tubine has some pretty good potential, but the design is NOT complete.   They still have a lot of kinks to work out and a lot more testing before you'll start seeing them everywhere.

I'd think that a small wind generator made of rigid materials would be more DIY friendly.  Something that could be suspended from a balloon.  There are a few hobby-scale wind-power projects on Instructables that you can draw inspiration from.  The only think you'll need to add is a balloon and some kind of tethering system.

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