We have decided to highlight new Green Technology companies which are vying to make an impact in the field of Alternate Energy, Auto industry etc…This being so close to the starting of the Airborne Wind Energy Conference of 2010 at Stanford University, we decided to choose one of the Air Borne wind energy companies.
The company we are covering is Ampyx Power; a young company located in the Hague. Ampyx Power is developing the PowerPlane, a machine that can extract energy from the wind much more economically than wind turbines.
What is the Power Plane?
Above is a picture of the 10 kW PowerPlane on the cable. The wing span of the aircraft is a little over 5 meters.
The principle of operation of the power plane is based on the aircraft’s flying patterns in the sky and generating high tension forces in the connecting tether. The system generates power as the cable is unwound from a drum located at the ground. When the cable is fully unwound, the aircraft performs a dive and part of the cable is retrieved quickly in order to minimize power losses. It is the difference in tension during retrieval that allows net energy to be generated. When the cable is retrieved to its original condition, the process is repeated.
The team is aiming at completion of automation for the 10kW prototype by end of 2010. Ampyx has secured financing from the European fund for Regional Development and the press release is attached below.
Airborne Wind Energy Startup Ampyx Power secures subsidy from the European fund for regional development
The Hague, 14.09.2010 – The energy technology startup company Ampyx Power has succeeded in securing a subsidy from the European fund for regional development. This subsidy will allow Ampyx Power to finalize the automation of the prototype PowerPlane system. The PowerPlane system has the potential to generate renewable energy at costs similar to fossil fuel generated electricity.
Ampyx Power develops a straightforward Airborne Wind Energy system, which successfully utilizes winds at higher altitudes for energy production. The PowerPlane system uses a glider plane to unwind a cable from a winch during flight and thereby propel a generator on the ground. The expected costs of this way of energy production are significantly lower than those of commonly used wind turbines and comparable to grey energy production.
The subsidy from the European fund for regional development was obtained through the Kansen voor West program in the city of The Hague, the Netherlands.
Together with the investment deal earlier this year with the Norwegian energy company Statkraft, Europe’s biggest producer of renewable energy and Byte, a Dutch IT company, this completes the financing required for full automation of electricity production with the company’s current 10kW PowerPlane prototype and start the next development phase of scaling up to a 100KW system.
Ampyx Power plans to demonstrate fully automated power production in late 2010. The development of a commercial 1MW PowerPlane is expected to be finalized in 2013.
Website – http://www.ampyxpower.com/