"Why airborne wind energy can be a smart investment for net-zero"


The second billion in AWE R&D investment is shaping up. WEF is a heavy-hitting new player.

AWE won’t necessarily be perfected by the deepest pockets, unless they bet the gameboard.

Nor will top promotors necessarily have the goods. Best safety and engineering physics wins.

  • DaveS, JAL CTO
    TX, USA.

I received the link to the WEF article along with the comments, through one of the many mass emails from Dave Santos.

This article does not mention anything really new, although it is news in itself because of the source: the WEF is interested in AWE, here is the news.

I only published the link and the title of the article such it appears, the rest having seemed to me without interest.

6 posts were merged into an existing topic: Questions about Moderation

@Massimo commented favorably this article on:

I was doing extensive research on Skysails and came across a telling exchange during an AWES presentation on YouTube between an academic involved in the Skysails platform’s design and a Skysails employee. The employee pointed out that the academic’s research did not reflect real-life results, especially regarding altitude. Though the tone was light, underlying tensions were evident.

Skysails’ design suffers from issues that became clear in the video, chiefly the limitations imposed by the tether weight on both the altitude of the flying element and the kite’s agility and speed. This issue echoes challenges in Kite Aerial Photography (KAP), where rig weight causes the tether to sag, limiting the tether angle.

The control configuration of Skysails’ two-line kites reveals some specific contributing factors:

  • Y-Shape: Skysails’ wider separation of lines in a Y-shape enhances stability but slows response, restricting agility.
  • Weight of the Tether and Control Pod: These factors further slow the kite, limiting both altitude and available power.
  • Impact on Wind Window and Power: Combined, the Y-shape, tether weight, and control pod reduce the wind window, limiting the kite’s potential power.

These design features, while aiming for controlled behavior, have led to real-world limitations that were not anticipated in theoretical designs. The experience with Skysails serves as an illustrative case, highlighting the complex interplay between design choices and practical application in kite engineering.

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