Airborne wind energy systems using lighter-than-air with photovoltaic plant for hydrogen production on board (LTA-AWES-PV-HP-OB).
Until recently I hardly saw any possibilities for LTA. Indeed prototypes like Magenn’s or Altaeros’ use helium, which is rare and expensive. Gas leaks impose costly periodic re-inflation on the ground, as well as dangerous handling when the gas is hydrogen.
My opinion evolved after seeing a link provided by @Windy_Skies:
The hydrogen risk is mitigated because the production is automated according to a slow and continuous process, avoiding handling. And the time of continuous operation becomes long, takeoff and landing operations becoming rare.
I began to synthesize an LTA-AWES using hydrogen production on board on Towards a viable AWES , mentioning http://www.ltawind.com/Main.php?lang=en : an airship carrying two conventional wind turbines on its wings.
Unlike the requirement for transport, the storage of hydrogen on board is not needed. PV supply the complement of inflation and the VTOL. The surplus electricity is sent to the ground with the electricity produced by the wind turbines.
Several companies envisage a renewal of the transport airship by the use of hydrogen which is inexpensive and can be produced on board. On this occasion the transport and AWE companies could cooperate. Thus an AWES would be a step before the passenger transport stage, allowing usefully testing the system without persons on board.
AWES could go from small (power a house) to large, then towards networks allowing carrying numerous wind turbines not too large in order to mitigate the weight penalty as they scale.