French company NewWind has created the “Arbre a Vent” or “Wind Tree,” a 3-meter-tall generator designed for urban environments which makes the most of smaller air currents.
Operating in near complete silence, the wind tree consists of 72 micro turbine “aeroleaves” that rotate in the wind, generating an estimated 3.1. kW of power.
While this isn’t much compared to industrial-sized turbines, which typically generate in the region of 1 – 3MW, having multiple smaller turbines has its uses.
“Urban wind is not very strong, but it is very turbulent,” says “Arbre à Vent” engineer Julia Revuz. “These turbines need less wind to get started and produce around 3kW of energy, which could heat a small home, fuel lights or charge an electric car.”