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IIT-K students develop unique turbine to generate power

At a time when several parts of Uttar Pradesh are battling power crisis and authorities are looking for alternative sources of energy and ways to generate more electricity, two final year students of the Indian Institute of Technology-Kanpur (IIT-K) have developed an unconventional wind turbine to generate power for residential areas.

education Updated: May 12, 2016 12:43 IST
Rajeev Mullick
Rajeev Mullick
Hindustan Times
Uttar Pradesh,IIT Kanpur,Turbine
Ashwin with the prototype of the wind turbine.(HT Photo)

At a time when several parts of Uttar Pradesh are battling power crisis and looking for alternate sources of energy to generate more electricity, two students of the Indian Institute of Kanpur have developed an unconventional wind turbine to generate power for residential purposes.

The aesthetically designed lightweight wind turbine model for residential buildings can be installed on the front or side walls of the building.

Designed by Ashwin Gandhi and Saurabh Anand also won the first prize in the energy category at Hackathon -- an all-India competition of innovation organised by IIT-Bombay and held at the Make in India event recently.

The turbine looks like glass façade in series, waving as the wind blows. All units are connected with the Internet and can communicate with each other, which helps them prepare to accept the wind current,” explained Ashwin while talking to HT over the phone.

The duo specifically designed the turbine for urban areas in such a way that it can tap energy to generate power even if the wind speed is less. The turbine can generate one unit of power at a wind speed of 8km per hour. A first-of-its-kind, the turbine can tap energy with the highest efficiency and also help reduce global warming, claimed Ashwin.

Explaining the modus operandi he further said, “When the wind blows through the gaps between buildings, the speed gets accelerated. This accelerated speed can then be used to tap energy by setting up the wind turbines on the side walls of these buildings.”

The duo are now working on completing the design and making it more efficient. We plan to project the model as a start-up idea and make it available to the people by the end of this year, said Ashwin.

Talking about the building aesthetics Ashwin said no one liked to see a big fan-like on the terrace. That’s where Saurabh Anand stepped in. “We decided to make the turbines look like an art installation. Inspired by how environmental artists around the world make kinetic structures on building walls that move with the wind, we also tried to design our turbines in the same way,” said Saurabh.

“The norm followed by wind turbine designers around the world is to mount conventional turbines on the rooftops, which is flawed and doesn’t always work. Also, terrace is an important utility area in a country like India. Therefore we concluded that side walls are the best for mounting small turbines and designed an unconventional, flutter type, leaf-like wind turbine,” added Ashwin.

First Published: May 11, 2016 13:24 IST