Three years of research and development were necessary for a team of French engineers to design their interpretation of wind power for cities. The Wind Tree is an innovative tree-shaped wind turbine.

It consists of a steel structure 10 meters high and 7.5 meters wide, the branches of which contain 63 sheets of highly resistant plastic (ABS) that capture the wind and transfer energy through a generator located at the base of each of them. A single “wind tree” is capable of generating 3 kW of instantaneous power and approximately 1,900 kWh in one year.

This innovative and efficient wind turbine can be “planted” in any park or street without breaking the aesthetic of the city. For example, there are some already installed in the Parisian district of Bourget or in the installations of Roland Garros.

The challenges of the project were very diverse, they had to ensure that each artificial leaf captures the available wind with maximum efficiency, so its shape, size and orientation were crucial. Also determine the optimal number of sheets and their location in the structure, so that they do not interfere with each other. Another major challenge was to design a small but powerful powerhouse at the base of each leaf so that the rotation caused by the wind could be turned into electricity. In addition to calculating the optimum rotational speed to maximize the amount of energy generated. The resistance of the leaves and the structure to the forces caused by the wind was also taken into account during the design of the prototype.

Using dynamic fluid simulation, they were able to determine the location of the 63 leaves on the tree, to optimize the efficiency of each without interfering with the others.

ANSYS engineers were able to accurately design and predict virtually every possible variable, using the Mechanical, Fluent, and Maxwell applications of ANSYS software to address the structural and electromagnetic challenges posed by the project.

Jérôme Michaud-Larivière, founder of the company “New Wind”, comments that:

The idea came to me in a square where I saw how the leaves shook when there was not a breath of air.

creative wind tree

He then revamped the hypothesis that energy:

it had to come from somewhere and be translatable into watts. Other modernist turbine ideas and designs have grabbed the headlines, but the Wind Tree is the first to fully integrate form and function rather than just an add-on.. “

Wind tree leaf detail

In this video, how it works will be very clear:

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