Check out some of our other models:
- Desktop Satellite Antenna
- Animated Humanoid Robot Head
- Mini Vertical Wind Turbine
- Mike's Spool Holder
- The Catfish - A fully working submarine
- Pumpkin Carving Tools
Wind Energy Stored In Gravity
Design a 3D model that harnesses the power of the wind.
Energy transfer, movable assemblies.
This model demonstrates a fairly new idea that is being used in the field of renewable energy:
Storing energy from wind and solar in gravity. This simple solution eliminates the need for expensive and environmentally unfriendly batteries.
We can use generated energy to lift heavy objects and later retrieve the energy using the weight of the lifted object to turn gears on its way back down. A gravity battery is considered full when the heavy object is lifted all the way up.
Real world implementations of this concept usually involve weights that are either lowered into deep holes in the ground or held in above ground silos.
How it works
Energy is generated using a vertical wind turbine on the lefthand side. There is a movable battery section in the middle that can be adjusted left or right to charge or expend the gravity battery. On the right side, there is a fan that can be used to reproduce the summer breeze after it is caught and stored in the battery.
Multiple copies of the rack gear can be glued together to increase the storage capacity of the battery indefinitely. There is a small release lever on the top left of the movable battery area that keeps the gears moving in one direction.
I’m using 8x7x22mm ball bearings to make all of the parts turn smoothly: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002BBGTK6
Video: http://youtu.be/l1YajkmqFpw and https://youtu.be/9IRc9xG2ers
Here is a video of Bill Gates talking about gravity energy storage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RH5Lgv-4te8
Check out http://www.gravitybattery.info/ for a great illustration of a proposed home use solution.
Mini version of the vertical wind turbine:
I've included full models of the turbine and fan in addition to sliced versions for easier printing. You can reduce the number of fan blades, reverse them, or attach a motor/anything else you'd like.
I recommend printing in ABS with .2 layer height and 30% fill.
The rack gears function as the battery weight, so it might be a good idea to print them at 100% fill, and/or attach additional weight to the gear to increase torque.
Let me know if you have any questions!