New Wind Turbine Blades Mimic Hummingbirds

By The Maritime Executive 01-24-2017 05:41:02

A Tunisian company Tyer Wind has developed a new type of wind turbine that mimics the wing movements of hummingbirds. Hummingbirds are believed to achieve extremely energy efficient hovering, having for example a 20 percent better hovering efficiency than a British Army Black Hornet micro-drone helicopter.  

A test turbine with carbon fiber wings 5.25 feet long each is capable of producing 1kW of power, says Tyer Wind. The wings flap move through an 80 degree arc in a space that occupies approximately 12 square feet.

The company says that because the wings are based on an oscillating concept, the converter generates limited vortices compared to other turbine types allowing them to be placed at higher densities in a wind farm.

The development is based on what the company calls Aouinian 3D kinematics. This allows the conversion of a linear motion into a rotational one (reciprocating) and is capable of imitating animal kinematics including that of hummingbirds, flying insects and marine animals’ fins. 

Inventor Anis Aouini says the concept has a wide scope of strategic applications including wind energy, external combustion engines, internal combustion engines, pumps, and marine propulsion.