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Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs) can be both small and large. However, they are not the mainstay of the wind industry and for that reason they are assigned a category under Small Wind Turbines on this site.

There is also an extensive collection of archival and recent photographs of VAWTs and various forms of Darrieus turbines on the Photos section of this site. There you can find photos of Vertical Axis Wind Turbines.

Quiet Revolution Goes Quiet: Maker of QR5 VAWT Files for Bankruptcy

May 7, 2014,   by Paul Gipe

Quiet Revolution, the one-time manufacturer of an architecturally dramatic helical wind turbine, filed for bankruptcy on 15 April in London. Note: The following is adapted from the forthcoming...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Small Wind

Poor Comparison Between Small VAWT and Small HAWT: UGE’s VisionAIR Pushing the Limits. . . of Hype

April 23, 2014,   by Paul Gipe

In the spring of 2014, Urban Green Energy (UGE) announced with much fanfare that they had completed third-party performance testing on a new product, the VisionAIR wind turbine. As press releases for...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Vertical Axis Wind Turbines: Great In 1890, Also-rans In 2014

April 7, 2014,   by Mike Barnard

Vertical axis wind turbines (VAWT) continue to get attention, press and R&D funding. Antagonists of mainstream wind generation continually point at them as if they were a superior technology. People...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Vertical axis wind turbines aren’t replacing horizontal axis offshore turbines

February 18, 2014,   by Mike Barnard

Over the past few months, an interesting wrinkle on the vertical-axis-wind-turbines-are-better mythology has surfaced: that they are superior offshore and that many countries are investing heavily in...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind

Rebuttal to Another Eggbeater Oh My--Saskatoon’s Lux

November 15, 2013,   by Glen Lux

Thank you for your critique on the CBC article. I do not expect to get praise or support from anyone in the wind industry for the efforts that I have made, but I do wish you and others, would keep an...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Another Eggbeater Oh My--Saskatoon’s Lux: More Over-the-top VAWT Hype

November 8, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

It must be a slow news week out on the Canadian Prairies. No big city mayor smoking crack or threatening to kill someone in Saskatchewan to grab attention. Instead they’re touting another—yes...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

FBI: Canadian Indicted for Securities and Wire Fraud Touting Mag-Wind

October 24, 2013,  

United States Attorney Thomas G. Walker announced that on October 18, 2013, a federal grand jury in Raleigh, North Carolina returned a two-count indictment charging JAMES ALAN ROWAN with securities...[more]

Category: Mag-Wind, Inventions & Questionable Wind Turbines, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Questionable Turbines and Siting Give Architects, LEED, Green Builders, and Wind Bad Name

September 9, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

Updated with a photo of the 18 Venger V2 Savonius turbines on the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.[more]

Category: News on Small Wind, Inventions & Questionable Wind Turbines, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Rooftop & Urban Wind, LEED LEED

Gizmag: Are "school of fish" turbine arrays a red herring?

July 23, 2013,   by Mike Barnard

Following the latest round of coverage, Gizmag takes a deeper look at his concept, and wonders whether the idea of packing turbines into as tight a space as possible might overlook some wind energy...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

Mein Gott! Costly VAWT Installed on Cologne High-Rise

July 1, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

I’ve written a lot about the folly of “building integrated” wind turbines, or the corollary, roof top wind turbines. It’s a plague here in the US, Britain, and the Netherlands. To reiterate, the...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Another Poorly Sited Hoosier VAWT Vying for Worst Turbine Install

June 29, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

Hoosiers have definitely drunk the cool-aid. Worse, it's another example of architectural greenwashing. According local press reports the Nature Conservancy has installed the "crown jewel" of its...[more]

Category: Worst Turbine Install in History, News on Small Wind, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, LEED LEED

Invest carefully; wind energy ‘innovations’ are rarely kosher

May 8, 2013,   by Mike Barnard

The wind industry isn’t going to be disrupted by someone with an idea and a Powerpoint pitch. If someone is approaching you with a great investment opportunity based on a ‘new’ wind generation...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Inventions & Questionable Wind Turbines

Gorlov Helical Wind Turbine

April 26, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

The helical rotor design is reputed to reduce or eliminate the torque ripple encountered in traditional two-blade Darrieus or eggbeater turbines.[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, LEED LEED

FloWind’s Extended Height to Diameter VAWT

April 23, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

FloWind’s development of the Extended Height-to-Diameter (EHD) Vertical Axis Wind Turbine was the last gasp of Darrieus wind turbine development in the US.[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Photos of Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

April 19, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

I've added photos of historical interest to my web pages on Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs) and Darrieus turbines of various designs. . .[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind Turbines

Mariah Windspire VAWT Measured Performance

March 22, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

There are now several measured power curves of the Mariah Windspire publicly available. This is one of the very few contemporary household-size (small) Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs) to complete...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

Crissy Field Small VAWT Demonstration Photos Posted

March 20, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

These are series of photos of a "demonstration" of "urban wind" using five Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs) from three different manufacturers at Crissy Field in San Francisco. They are all very...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

The Evolution of Rotor and Blade Design

March 7, 2013,   by Jim Tangler

An insightful summary of how the aerodynamic properties of VAWTs differ from HAWTs by an authority on aerodynamics presented at the 2000 AWEA conference. . .

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Sandia 1982 Proceedings of VAWT Design Seminar—Some Brief Comments

March 7, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

It is unlikely that any “modern” reinvention of Darrieus designs can perform any better than the experimental turbines Sandia and its contractors developed during the late 1970s and early 1980s. . .[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Power Performance Test Report for the Windspire by Windward Engineering

February 28, 2013,  

The Windspire is a vertical‐axis gyromill. The H‐rotor is 1.22 m (4 ft) in diameter by 6.1 m (20 ft) tall, capturing a swept area of 7.43 m2 (80 ft2). The data presented in this report was collected...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Small Turbine Testing, Mariah Windspire

Market, cost, and technical analysis of vertical and horizontal axis wind turbines—A review

February 19, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

“For all wind turbines, other than those used for more decorative purposes, the cost of energy is important.”[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind

Sandia's Retrospective of VAWT Technology—A Review

February 8, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

This review was a case of cleaning my desktop and before electronically filing away Sandia's year-old report on its work with Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs), I'd decided to thumb through it and...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind

Vertical Axis Wind Turbine Revival?

February 8, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

Since Wind Energy Basics was first published in 1999, there has been an explosion of interest in new vertical-axis wind turbines. In that edition, the conclusion illustrating one photograph was...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

FloWind: The World’s Most Successful VAWT (Vertical Axis Wind Turbine)

February 7, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

Note: The following is an excerpt from my 2009 book Wind Energy Basics Revised: A Guide to Home- and Community-scale Wind Energy Systems. I am reprinting it here because of the constant...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind

Some Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT) Resources on the Web

February 7, 2013,   by Paul Gipe

In preparing for a review of a Sandia report on its decades-long research on Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (VAWTs), especially the Darrieus or eggbeater design, I thought it might be wise to first see...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind

Scientific American: The Quest for Vertical Axis Wind Turbines Despite Failures

January 29, 2013,   by Robynne Boyd

The quest to slay the faulty dragon of conventional, or horizontal axis, wind turbines (HAWTS) has been an impossible one, thus far. The domination of conventional wind comes from their reliability,...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Fox: Some Nevada Mariah Windspire users say returns lacking

September 27, 2012,  

Mariah Power, the company that produced the Sousas' wind turbines, generated headlines several years ago as an example of a successful northern Nevada company making headway in the renewable energy...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

Mariah: Another Performance Report on Windspire VAWT

March 30, 2010,   by Paul Gipe

The French test site, SEPEN (Site Expérimental pour le Petit Eolien de Narbonne), published a performance report 28 September 2009 on Mariah's 1.2 kW Windspire. The test site is in a windy region in...[more]

Category: Small Turbine Testing, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

Mariah In the Running for Worst Small Turbine Install

January 31, 2010,   by Paul Gipe

You have to give them credit, small turbine manufacturers are a competitive lot, especially small VAWT suppliers. They are tripping over themselves to see who can win the award for worst turbine...[more]

Category: Worst Turbine Install in History, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

Worst Turbine Install in History?

December 27, 2009,   by Paul Gipe

Mike Nelson call this the worst turbine install in history. It certainly ranks right up there with some recent installations by Mariah, a Vertical-Axis Wind Turbine manufacturer.[more]

Category: Worst Turbine Install in History, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

Quick Grab a Stake--Mag-Wind Rises from the Grave

October 20, 2009,   by Paul Gipe

Mag-Wind is back. Grab your children. Bar the door. The dead walk. . . Worse Ed Begley and Jay Leno, those omnipresent endorsers of all things "green", have leapt to the aid of the undead. Their...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Inventions & Questionable Wind Turbines, Rooftop & Urban Wind, Mag-Wind

Muncie VAWT--An Expensive Demonstration

June 22, 2009,   by Paul Gipe

The Muncie (Indiana) Star recently reported that the Delaware County Redevelopment Commission awarded almost $1 million to a relatively little known German company.[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

NREL Mariah Power's Windspire Wind Turbine Testing and Results

January 14, 2009,  

The Windspire is a 1.2-kilowatt (kW) vertical-axis small wind turbine. The turbine tower is 9.1 meters tall, and its rotor area is 1.2 by 6.1 meters. The turbine has a permanent-magnet generator with...

Category: Small Turbine Testing, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire

How Not to Site Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (Mariah Windspire) #1

January 4, 2009,   by Paul Gipe

Stewart Russell captured these photos of a Mariah Windspire installed at the College School in St. Louis. Stewart is an experienced wind hand and noted that the Windspire, which is an unguyed,...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Worst Turbine Install in History, Mariah Windspire

How Not to Site Vertical Axis Wind Turbines (Mariah Windspire) #2

September 26, 2008,   by Paul Gipe

This is a classic example of how not to install wind turbines to best advantage. The best that can be said about this installation is that at least they were not mounted on top of the building.[more]

Category: Worst Turbine Install in History, Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Mariah Windspire, LEED LEED

Small Turbine VAWTs and Rotor Loading

February 25, 2008,   by Paul Gipe

Below is summary of principle characteristics of mini- and household-size Vertical Axis Wind Turbines on the international market. It is not intended to include every VAWT marketed worldwide.[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Mag-Wind Pyramidal Power

July 13, 2007,   by Paul Gipe

The pyramids have always been thought to contain some magical power. Maybe they do. Maybe Mag-Wind has found a way to tap into this magical power, because they certainly are not going to get much...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, Inventions & Questionable Wind Turbines, Rooftop & Urban Wind, Mag-Wind

The Myths & Mysticism of Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

February 1, 2005,   by Mick Sagrillo

At least several times a year, yet another announcement about a “technological breakthrough” arrives in my e-mail box. Invariably, the device being “unveiled” is a vertical axis wind turbine, and in...

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

EcoQuest International, WindTree, and AWEA Cease & Desist Order

January 1, 2002,  

False, Misleading and Deceptive Claims Regarding AWEA's Purported Endorsement of WindTree Energy Generator[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Chicago Offshore Wind Negates Crackpot Invention

August 28, 2001,   by Paul Gipe

An edited version of the following was read on National Public Radio's Weekend Sunday program. Weekend Edition Sunday Re: Robbie Harris (sp)'s report on Wind Energy for Chicago/Sunday 26 August,...[more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines, News on Large Wind

Ventilators and Squirrels in a Cage

January 1, 2001,   by Paul Gipe

Like ducted turbines, a perennial favorite of hucksters and charlatans is, for lack of a better word, squirrel cage rotors. [more]

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

Sandia: Final Project Report: Highenergy Rotor Development, Test and Evaluation

September 1, 1996,  

Conclusion of Sandia's design development contract for FloWind's EHD Vertical Axis Wind Turbine. . .

Category: Small Vertical Axis Wind Turbines

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