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solar windmills

combine solar power and wind mills into one
  (+7, -9)
(+7, -9)
  [vote for,

with the need to find alternative sources of energy on the rise, the two main sources of clean natural energy are the wind and the sun. the problem being that both take up massive amounts of space and are fairly unatractive looking i propose combining the two. solar panels on the props of a wind mill. not only would huge rotating shiny props look appealing, but they would also provide much more energy for each parsel of land they would be on. solar power would be dominant during the day except in higly windy conditions. at night of course the system would be a wind generator. no more seeing pictures of wind turbines and solar panels standing side by side its time to unite.
10clock, Apr 19 2005


       I think the solar energy should oppose that of the wind. Whichever is strongest that day should send its surplus out from the mill.
FarmerJohn, Apr 19 2005

       Strictly speaking, wind energy is powered by the sun, and could be classified as solar energy.   

       That being said, I'm not sure this would work. For the panels to be even reasonably efficient, they would need to face the sun. If you want them to be very efficient, then they would need to track the sun. In order to perform either, they would need to swivel (either towards the sun or to maintain horizontality). This would impede its wind harvesting capability.   

       The problem with alternate energy sources is not the lack of space, but the lack of proper government subsidy to make it affordable. Windmills need to have a minimum distance between them. If you interspersed these with PV, you would get much more energy than covering the blades of the windmill (which quite frankly is not enough square footage to be significant). Of course you need to be careful not to shade any of the panels, or else you drop the array efficiency drastically, so it might be better to separate the two completely.   

       Also, I dont see that either solar panels or windmills are unattractive. If however, you do (to each his own), then I dont see that slapping a solar panel onto a windmil is going to improve the aesthetics of either.   

       [continues to rant].. Furthermore, the biggest drawback (or one of the biggest) of the current grid is the fact that you have a plant manufacturing energy in a remote location, and have to transport that energy across hundreds of miles to where its needed. This results in a considerable loss of energy. Windmills & PV have am inbuilt advantage over power plants by producing energy where it is consumed, eliminating grid losses. While producing power at the plant by renewable means is better than by non-renewable means, I think smaller on-site renewable units are the way to go.   

       I would love to bun this idea for the intent, but I'm afraid I will have to bone it because in my humble (and rambling) opinion, I think it won't work.
energy guy, Apr 19 2005

       Yeah, what [energy guy] said.
zeno, Apr 19 2005

       Fishbone for lack of capitalization.
disbomber, Apr 19 2005

       Croissant for lack of capitulization.   

       Yeah, what [disbomber] said.
TolpuddleSartre, Apr 24 2005

       I'm thinkin' a diesel powered windmill would solve the problems of overcast and windless days. With enough horsepower behind em, you could really get them babies spinnin'.
doctorremulac3, Apr 25 2005

       //capitulization.//WTF? & WTF on other comments? Why is there a 'minimum distance between them? vortex & turbulence?
From windmill fields I have seen, There is no way such is exceeded.
Best solar energy storage I've read about involves molten sodium. I doubt windmills can do it, or like EG comments, manage to catch both rays & air surf simultaneously
Zimmy, Apr 25 2005

       I can envision an egg-beater type wind generator with a small PV solar panel to keep the rotors moving when the wind is not enough to get it going.   

       Thus the idea of a solar/wind generator (using a large concrete horizontal fly wheel could be used for any ranch, farm, or other use.
ulbobo, Jun 08 2006

       This wouldn't work very well because the wind might be coming from one direction and the sun would be in the other direction.
BJS, Jun 08 2006

       I think people are being too black and white about this.   

       Saying "it will not work".   

       It will work a bit surely ?   

       I like the idea of using the available surface of the windmill for this purpose, you might as well...so long as the cost (enviromentally and financially) of implementation and maintenance of the solar panels don't exceed the benefit over the working lifetime of the device, this could surely work....?   

monojohnny, Jun 08 2006

       Has anyone made a sci fi movie yet? They look like the blades will just jump off and go rolling across the countryside.
AH, Jun 09 2006

       Unsafe Wind: A moment of Truth Movie!   

       Its the 21st Century and Wind Power has solved the worlds energy crisis as a safe and reliable form of energy. But is it safe enough......
jhomrighaus, Jun 09 2006

       Wouldn't it make more sense just to attach solar panels on the towers supporting the wind turbines?
Iangould, Oct 25 2006


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