8.19.2005

Tapping the Sky

In the latest PopSci, someone's come up with a better, albeit more technologically challenging, way of harnessing wind into usable energy.

Like the monster mother of all kites, a company called Sky Windpower (which sports an excellent website about high altitude wind power) has been founded by an Australian engineer with three others to attempt to harness the near limitless windpower of the jet stream with a machine they call an FEG (Flying Electric Generator).
They're currently seeking $4 million to build a 200 kilowatt prototype but still need to get FAA clearance to fly it. The production models would generate 20 megawatts each and would be flown in farms of up to 600 turbines to generate enough power to light up two cities the size of Chicago. Power and control of the huge machines would be handled by a three inch thick tether connected to a winch on a ground station.
Man, I love Popular Science!
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