Date: November 15
The need to bet on clean energy to combat climate change and the uncontrolled rise in electricity prices has led dozens of companies and startups to stir their ingenuity to seek the greatest possible efficiency. Tiny wind turbines compete with the most powerful in the world or those that work without blades, while flexible solar panels reach balconies and others seek to turn their windows into transparent photovoltaic panels.
Among the most promising proposals is one that is born from the conjunction of these two types of sustainable energy, wind and solar. That is the objective of the French startup Unéole, which has developed a mixed energy system that combines turbines with solar panels to maximize energy production by up to 40%.
The starting point makes all the sense in the world. The efficiency of photovoltaic cells depends on the amount of solar radiation, which is reduced to almost zero at night and decreases significantly in the winter months. To continue producing energy in those moments without sun, Unéole engineers have devised a structure that, under the plates, includes wind turbines that take over and generate electricity uninterruptedly and constantly.
Although there are smaller and even portable alternatives, most wind turbines are not intended for urban environments, as they improve at high altitudes and need an open space to produce energy, as well as not being silent.
Solar energy has been installed for decades both in chalets and in large residential and office buildings, but photovoltaic panels have a wide margin for improvement and considerable extensions are still necessary to generate enough energy to power an entire building by itself. alone. In addition, if you want to make the most of the necessary energy, it is also necessary to install batteries to store it.
The solution proposed by Unéole is precisely designed to solve these shortcomings by combining both types of sustainable energy. The proposal is as simple as it is effective: several rows of Savonius-type wind turbines, with moving parts moved by the wind rotating around a vertical axis, covered by a ‘roof’ of solar panels. With a total height of about four meters, this allows up to 40% improvement on the results that would be obtained only with solar panels.
In addition, to guarantee a low carbon footprint, Unéole’s wind turbines are built with recycled and recyclable materials (aluminum and stainless steel, mainly) and are locally produced, to minimize the use of fuel in the transport of material.
Source: Peru Energy 2022