PARIS - Designed and made by French company New Wind, the trees stand at over 9 metres tall and 7 metres wide, sporting a total of 54 green leaf-turbines that can capture up to 5.4 kilowatts of energy at a time and produce around 2,400 kWh annually.
While larger industrial turbines can only work in winds of over 35 kilometres per hour, the leaves capture energy from wind speeds of less than 8kph. Also, the plastic leaves silently turn in the breeze, no matter which way it blows. New Wind estimates the trees could meet half of the average French household’s annual energy needs or run a small, low-consumption office.
A big advantage of the wind system over solar power is space. A 5.4kW solar array would take up about 131 square metres of roof, but a wind tree’s curved branches could be attached to any balcony or rooftop.
According to New Wind, the tree is also desinged to last over 25 years and withstand storms. Cost of the tree is $55, 350 and smaller versions are set to be made is 2018.
There are currently 7 of these trees in use in France, Germany and Switzerland.
- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE