Feb 18, 2011

Science Scene - Micro Wind?

Student with oscillator array

Designers are coming up with approaches that offer smaller scale power generation that do not require open fields, large swept areas, and powerful winds - things that large, spinning blade turbines need - to create electricity. One such project is the Vibro-Wind generator, which has been developed by a team of students at Cornell University.

The test Vibro-Wind generator is made with an array of foam blocks which catch the wind and act as oscillators. It produces electricity with piezoelectric transducers, small devices that emit electrons when stressed by the vibrations from the blocks.

Small and cheap may be a useful alternative for producing wind power, particularly in environments without consistently strong winds that are suited for large turbine installations. Beacuse the Vibro-Wind generator works with buffeting and vibration, it could be more appropriate for urban installations where swirling winds are more usual than the ideal winds needed for typical bladed turbines.



  1. Interesting, I enjoy hearing about alternates. We will have to develop these if we are going continue to use aand demand the level of power we are unsing.

    It is amazing that even refrigeration power requirements are lowering so much so that the new motor homes are not installing the older very expensive LP/elec refers. The new elec will run off of very lo amps.

    I am amazed how large the blades on the giant wind generators are. Passing them on the interstate out west I thought at first they were 757 wings being transported. haha.

    Thanks for continuing to show the latest generating ideas.

    From Florida

  2. Agreed. Cool idea that I hadn't heard of. I could see this technology incorporated into large 'privacy screen' applications, serving a dual function.

  3. Looks like an interesting idea for smaller applications.

  4. Singing along with the chorus! I was recently talking about living in a RV and this was part of the cost/benefit analysis, oddly enough..!

  5. Very cool. I saw something like this on a building in Tempe (was visiting the University of Arizona and the sustainability department had attached similar generators to their building). Very impressive ... makes me wonder if it could be put to broader use in more residential buildings.

  6. What a great idea! We have a friend who has a massive house in the Pocono's and he has solar panels and a wind turbine. But what about people who want to par take in these energy savers, but don't have the room or area! Great research.


Tell Me What You Think, Don't Make me go Rogue on you :o)