Comments split from the "Disruptive Innovation" topic (some discussion on SuperTurbine)

I like to keep the original topic focused on

People who don’t practice wind energy always underestimate the difficulties.
Wikipedia articles won’t save you.

BTW the reasons SuperTurbine™ is a disruptive innovation is lower material use per unit swept area, and higher native RPM, reducing or eliminating the need for gearing.


Here’s a new “disruptive” “technology” from “Professor Crackpot”:
Energy from snow! Come on, it’s going to solve global warming!

“The results of this work could be astounding since seasonal snow covers around 33% of the earth’s land every year. So, we have a great source of energy ready to be collected!” (typical crackpot reasoning…)
— Dr. Maher El-Kady:

With global warming, that 33% is dimminishing every year!

Anyways, there are many humans on the earth. Today this idea seems nonsense, but perhaps he will discover an undiscovered gem in energy someday in the future

What niche market could it enter if it worked? How is it much better than the alternatives in one or a few ways for the customer? (And maybe, is there a path forward to become comparable to the alternatives in important other metrics?) That is a requirement for it to be a disruptive innovation.

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First of all, it DOES “work”:

For AWE:

  1. The driveshaft angle neatly matches a typical tether angle for kites.
  2. The tether and driveshaft are one.
  3. The rotors help provide lift.
    It’s simple, straightforward, logical, and easy to operate:

Ignoring if it, the one suspended from kites, works or not, how is it much better for the customer than an alternative they could buy? Which niche markets do you think it has? Those are relevant questions if we’re talking about disruptive innovation.

Does it for example generate ten times as much electricity for a tenth of the price, but shatter upon impact with the ground, so you have to constantly watch out for that?

The report looks very nice. This is a prime example where you would scale in numbers rather than size. If you can approach HAWT LCOE you could have a winner in this design.

As long as the tower is not airborne I guess the build cost would be close to a conventional windmill, and no new altitude height is achieved. But that maybe is not important for this design. If you put eg a grid of 6x6 superturbines on one tower you would use the wind area well, perhaps even exceeding a conventional wind turbine in the «betz limit» metric that we now know you are so fond of :stuck_out_tongue:

Could be for a grid of superturbines, the generators could be hardwired such that only one VFD device was necessary for the whole grid

The fatal barrier for an ST driveshaft is scaling up to 500m high, the prime current target resource in AWE, with FAA blessing. An ST to that altitude would take an expensive, massive, and fragile driveshaft perhaps 1000m long, with inherently low angular velocity. The ST’s off-axis rotors suffer in performance to the degree they angle up like a VAWT. This is no case of “disruptive innovation”.

The power kite is disruptive already. Kitesurfing has largely destroyed water-skiing, for example. Power kites operate easily at 500m. There are no existing applicable driveshafts to compare with. Its ST and other marginal AWES concepts that seem disrupted.