What is "Makani", a flying wind power generator developed by Google?
Google GlassYaAutomatic driving carIt is a research and development organization of Google etc.Google XWe are developing various future technologies. The next-generation wind power aircraft that such Google X is developing is "Makani"is.
Makani - Google
Makani is an unusual wind power generator that generates electricity while flying in the sky using the principle of kite. How to fly and generate electricity can be seen in the test flight movie below.
Makani Airborne Wind Turbine - YouTube
Aircraft attached to things like a launch pad. This is Makani's power generating device.
Four propellers attached to the blades rotate like a helicopter ......
Flight with flight, climb to the sky Makani. There is a foundation called the ground station on the ground, and Makani is connected to the ground station and tether (string).
It has risen to a certain height Makani.
From here, we start flight for power generation. I think whether to generate electricity while staying in one place like a kite ......
Surprisingly, it turns around like a circle Makani. This is the optimum flight pattern derived to the result that pursued efficiency. In the wind turbine that performs wind power generation, it is known that the tip of a large blade can receive energy most efficiently, so Makani uses only the most "delicious" part.
Makani who finished work hovering again in the air like a helicopter.
In the ground station on the ground, wind the tether around the drum.
Makani gradually approached the ground ... ...
And docking. When you do not need it, being able to wait on the ground is also one of the excellent points of Makani.
Makani's whole system which this was compactly settled. It seems to be said that it is the greatest merit that you can cut materials by 90% without requiring huge towers or big feathers like the conventional windmill.
Makani is a lightweight carbon fiber aircraft, equipped with eight power generation propellers. It is announced that it has 600 kilowatts of power generation capacity with high efficiency which is impossible on the ground by catching a strong wind over the altitude of 140 to 300 meters.
Tether not only controls the aircraft but also serves as a function to deliver generated electricity to the ground. The ground station gathered compactly is excellent in space saving and portability, and it seems to be expected to utilize power generation in remote areas or in disaster occurrence areas.
According to The Verge's report, Google's Rallye Page CEO told the team to advance "to crash the test machine more than five times" at least. This was a remark that aimed at aiming for efficient development by identifying problems by repeated failures. The team took the test in the most windy area in North America but against Mr. Paige's intention Makani made a stable flight even in a strong wind and the team ironically said " It seems he did.