A electrical component manufacturer has launched a partnership with Boston-based Eastern Wind Power to test new power equipment for decentralized power generation in the small-to-mid range. The Drive Technologies Div. of Siemens will provide drive trains for small-scale or micro-power generation projects between 30 to 900 kW. “This is a fast moving business segment for OEMs targeting decentralized power generation,” says Razvan Panaitescu, business development manager of the distributed power generation and microgrids sector for Siemens Drive Technologies Division.
“Cooperation with Eastern Wind Power will provide data to support what we feel is the next generation of green initiatives, or what we call the 4C’s of the tomorrow’s energy landscape – Create, Convert, Control, and Conserve. The aim is to provide the basic building blocks for system integrators or OEM’s that would like to build equipment for localized power generation, distribution and storage and install them into commercial buildings, neighborhoods, farms and micro or smart grids.”
The partnership, a proposed six-month pilot program, will let the two parties work on a Siemens 55 kW permanent magnet generator and Energy Conversion System within the first prototype of Eastern Wind Power’s vertical axis wind turbine (VAWT).
The project is being conducted at Martha’s Vineyard Airport in Edgartown, Massachusetts where the airport manager and staff have lent their support. Eastern Wind Power believes its Sky Farm concept of mounting between 10 to 20, 50kW VAWT’s on the roofs of commercial or residential high-rise buildings is the most efficient way to produce on-site distributed green energy in urban areas which are land-poor but building-rich.
“Working with Siemens’ engineers we have now commissioned one turbine and are producing power for the airport,” says Jonathan Haar, President of Eastern Wind Power. He adds that the company’s 50kW turbine on a high-rise can generate about 45,000 kWh annually.
“Our 50kW VAWT can handle turbulent urban winds, runs quietly, does not harm avian life, and easily mounts and connects to a power grid. Its small scale is aesthetically acceptable to community standards. A 10 unit Sky Farm 50kW unit will generate enough electrical energy to supply about 10% of a typical 500,000 ft2 high-rise building’s electrical power needs,” he says.
The turbine is connected to the NSTAR grid, the largest Massachusetts-based investor-owned electric and gas utility. The companies are logging real-time data including kilowatt output credited to the airport, temperature, wind speed, and wind direction. Upon completion of small wind safety certification this winter, the companies expect to build an install a second unit atop a high-rise building in Boston for further testing. The Siemens Drive Technologies Division serves all vertical markets in the production and process industries as well as the infrastructure and energy segment.
Eastern Wind Power