The Saphonian, the Zero-Blade Wind Converte from Tunisia
Innov8tiv Magazine previously brought you news about an ambitious projects currently being undertaken in Kenya, which will literally put Kenya as the leading Wind Power Generator in Africa. Today we bring you yet another exciting story about harnessing wind power but more efficiently and effectively. This new technology referred to as Saphonian unlike the conventional wind turbines fitted with blades works without those conventional blades we normally see in the wind convertors. This innovative technology is the brainchild of Anis Aouini and Hassine Labaled from Saphon Energy; a company that prides itself a champion of clean-Technology based in Tunisia.
This technology dubbed “The Saphonian, the Zero-Blade Wind Converte”; their convertors have a curved sail-shaped body that works by going on a back and forth 3D knot movement. Its motion resembles that of a wobbling dish, as it moves like this under the influence of wind, it converts majority of the wind’s kinetic power to mechanical energy: this is either directly through mechanical transmission or through pistons (pistons working under hydraulic transmission system). You can view the video of the Saphonian in action below.
The pistons are connected to an elaborate hydraulic system which converts the mechanical energy into intense hydraulic pressure which in turn is then converted to electrical energy. The contemporary sail-shaped body on the wind convertor is more effective compared to the conventional wind turbine with blades; the sail-shaped body has a much higher aerodynamic drag coefficient (Cd) compared to the technology used in the conventional wind turbines having blades. The zero-blade wind convertors has demonstrated to be twice as much capable of converting wind kinetic energy to electricity compared to the conventional wind turbine with blades holding the wind power constant in both cases.
The developers of this technology state that the curved shaping of the Saphonian body (Cd of 2.3) does swallow a greater portion of blowing winds thus harnessing significantly more of the wind kinetic energy. In addition to this, the curved-shape and absence of blades makes the Saphonian free from the Betz Law: the Saphonian is not a wind turbine. This shape makes the Saphonian significantly reduce aerodynamic losses due to the fact it has no blades.
Considering all these factors, perhaps the ongoing construction in Kenya of it Wind Power Generation Plant should consider the Saphonian to the conventional turbines with blades. Kenya’s project is estimated to produce 300MW of electricity upon its completion, but the Saphonian could double this amount from 300MW to 600MW if what is said by the developer of the Saphonian is anything to go by. Moreover, the Saphonian could be adapted in other African regions that are considering harnessing wind power, and this will go a long way in terms of providing renewable energy to upcoming industrialized African nation that are crippled by lack of and high cost of imported fossil fuels. There is no doubt that this will greatly reduce the carbon footprint of the African nations as well.