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Siemens Launches Permanent Magnet-Based Gearless Wind Turbine

25. April 2010

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Siemens Launches Permanent Magnet-Based Gearless Wind Turbine

Progress in the development of commercially-viable direct drive wind turbines took a significant step forward last week, with the official launch by Siemens Energy of its SWT-3.0-101 wind turbine. This turbine has a faceplate rating of 3 MW, has no gearbox and uses a permanent magnet generator to produce electricity. What’s really interesting about this system […]

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Magnets, Algae and Biofuels

13. December 2009

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Magnets, Algae and Biofuels

Siemens reported recently on an interesting use of magnets for the harvesting of fast-growing algae that will eventually be turned into biofuels. The use of algae as a potential source of fuels is nothing new within the world of renewable energy. As Siemens says: Algae are a valuable source of raw material. For millions of […]

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Vehicular Energy Storage Flywheel Concept Uses Permanent Magnet Gearing

30. November 2009

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Vehicular Energy Storage Flywheel Concept Uses Permanent Magnet Gearing

Last week, a technical consulting company called Ricardo, based in the UK, issued a press release on its Kinergy concept for a “high-speed, hermetically-sealed flywheel energy storage system concept with a highly innovative and patented magnetic gearing and coupling mechanism“. What immediately drew my attention to the concept, is the use of a permanent magnet […]

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New Permanent Magnet Direct Drive Generator Concept For Wind Turbines Unveiled

22. November 2009

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New Permanent Magnet Direct Drive Generator Concept For Wind Turbines Unveiled

[Updated: 03/09/10 & 11/23/09.] The Times Online has just published a story on a technology that apparently “has the potential to revolutionise the renewable energy industry by making wind power cheaper and more reliable and greatly increasing the efficiency of wind turbines for electricity companies.” The driver behind the work, conducted by Dr Markus Mueller […]

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The Problems Of Sourcing Wind Turbines And Rare Earth Metals From China

12. November 2009

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Last weekend, Democrat US Senator Chuck Schumer of NY made headlines with his comments on a recent plan to fund a wind farm in Texas, using Federal stimulus money to pay for Chinese-built wind turbines. Rare metals commentator and analyst Jack Lifton has posted a new article on the subject, called “The Rare Earth Crisis […]

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Wind Turbines – Up Close And Personal

12. October 2009

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Wind Turbines – Up Close And Personal

Last week I was in Denmark, and while there I had an opportunity to pay a visit to some wind turbines operated by Aalborg University in Northern Denmark.  Getting to finally see and hear a fully functional 2.3 MW wind turbine “in the flesh” was pretty cool, I have to say. There was a reasonable […]

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The Windbelt: A New Non-Turbine-Based Wind Energy Generator

23. September 2009

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The Windbelt: A New Non-Turbine-Based Wind Energy Generator

Earlier this week I came across a rather interesting new technology from Humdinger Wind Energy, LLC. Based in Honolulu, this company claims that “from enabling smart buildings to reducing the cost of wind energy”, they are “researching & developing the world’s first non-turbine harvesting technology, the Windbelt™ generator”.  Wind power without a wind turbine?  Definitely […]

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10 MW And Beyond: Are Superconductors The Future Of Wind Energy?

7. August 2009

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10 MW And Beyond: Are Superconductors The Future Of Wind Energy?

The demand for electricity generated by wind turbines grows each year, with legions of engineers working frantically to implement new technology.  In this article we will look at the “bleeding edge” of generator design: the emerging use of superconducting materials to produce direct drive generators that are in theory capable of generating 10 MW of […]

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How Does The Use Of Permanent Magnets Make Wind Turbines More Reliable?

3. August 2009

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How Does The Use Of Permanent Magnets Make Wind Turbines More Reliable?

For all of its soaring elegance, it is easy to forget just how complex a machine the modern-day commercial-scale wind turbine really is.  In this article I will focus on the massive, highly engineered electromechanical system sitting at the top of every wind turbine tower.  We’ll explore how the use of permanent magnets in the […]

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Why Are Wind Turbines Getting Bigger?

1. August 2009

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Why Are Wind Turbines Getting Bigger?

No-one following the growth of the wind turbine industry over the last two decades will have failed to have noticed the trend towards larger and taller turbines.   While this might seem to just be the natural order of things [after all, "bigger is better", right?] – it might be a useful exercise to pause […]

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