Japan was hit hard by the tsunami waves caused by the earthquake that hit its shores earlier this year. This natural disaster caused serious damage to the infrastructure of the country and its nuclear power plants, especially in Fukushima. This problem has the look of taxpayers about the dangers of power generation from dangerous materials such as uranium and has begun to talk seriously about the possibility of gradually replacing nuclear power stations to other sources less problematic.
Solar and wind have always been the first to be used when trying to get a renewable source, and in this respect Japan has been the exception. However, a nuclear power plant generates more energy than a typical solar or wind can provide, so Japan has begun looking for ways to improve the performance of these sources.
In this context, Yuji Ohya, a professor at Kyushu University has developed "Wind Lens", a concept introduced in the framework of the International Renewable Energy Exhibition in Yokohama (Japan). It is basically new type of wind turbine comprising a turbine with blades of more than 100 meters in diameter embedded in a ring-shaped structure. This ring acts as a "lens", intensifying the flow of the wind incident on the generator by multiplying the amount of electricity it can be generated by a traditional windmill.
While a turbine "Wind Lens" cannot compete with power generated by a nuclear plant, a "farm" could replace full of them quietly into a dangerous nuclear reactor. Ohya has planned to install these huge turbines on a hexagonal floating dock with dozens of these structures, and towed them out to sea. This approach will eliminate the critics who argue that wind farms are noisy and ruin the landscape. One or two miles offshore are out of sight, and the little noise produced cannot be heard from the coast.
Until now, "Wind Lens" is just a concept, and its creator has not yet decided its commercialization. Right now, wind energy represents about 2 percent of the world, with 159.2 gigawatts generated. The marketing of a generator like this could raise that percentage, producing electricity in a safe renewable way with a lower cost than the produced by traditional systems.
Source: ABC newspaper