EWICON Is a Windmill without Blades

Friday, April 5th 2013. | Technology

Windmills are great. They can generate free electricity for us by just taking the advantage of the kinetic energy brought by blowing wind. f there is one thing that exhibits us from installing many of them in urban areas, it must be the fact that they’re humongous, noisy, creates lots of disturbing vibration. For that reason, a group of Dutch researchers devise a bladeless windmill called EWICON.

ewicon windmill

Normally, the kinetic energy brought by the wind is converted to mechanical energy by the windmill blades. Such mechanical energy is then turned into potential energy that can be harvested for various uses. EWICON works by bypassing the process of mechanical energy conversion. Using charged water droplets contained on the prototype, it can directly convert the kinetic energy of the wind to potential energy. Check out the animated video below!

From a distance, EWICON looks like a gigantic racquet. It features a series of insulated tubes each of which are equipped with electrodes and nozzles. The electrodes will impregnate the water droplet with positive charge before it is spit out through the nozzles. That said, it’s not only the speed of the wind that will determine the energy output but also the amount of charged droplets released into the air as well as the positive potential charged into them.

At the moment, some working prototypes of EWICON have been completed. Some of them are already installed on the top of Stadstimmerhuis 010 building in Rotterdam and also around the campus of Delft Technical University. Apparently, the engineers are having some difficulty dealing with the fund needed to create much larger prototype.

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