Kite Power Solutions
Kite Power Solutions uses two kites to access strong winds at high altitudes to generate power for off-grid, remote, offshore, or areas affected by natural disasters.
KPS (Kite Power Solutions) has the idea of generating electricity using kite technology. The kites are programmed to fly at high altitudes in a figure eight, accessing stronger wind speeds that generate lift for continuous energy generation. They aim to provide energy at a cost lower than conventional wind turbine energy, using 85% less material. Based on UK annual domestic energy usage, a KPS system can power 380 homes per year. The product is still in prototype phase.
The KPS technology can be deployed at locations that conventional wind energy cannot access. It can be deployed globally, appropriate for developing countries, disaster struck areas and areas far away from the grid. KPS also envisions developing offshore markets in waters deeper than 60 m and identifies South Korea and Japan amongst its many market opportunities.
KPS aims to commercialize this technology by 2023. KPS plans to deploy its first 500 kW onshore power system at West Freugh, South West Scotland.
Goal 7: Affordable and clean energy
Target users include individuals in remote locations away or isolated from the grid, or those affected by natural disasters.
The system is being developed in Stranraer, South West Scotland.
The product will be installed at specified locations to harness wind energy which will then be transmitted to the desired end-use sector.
KPS expects testing the kite in 2021 and the commercial deployment of the product by 2023.
Is it a turbine, kite, etc?
How tall is this system and/or how high above ground does it operate?
The radius of the system as it is turned by the wind
What type of controls are used, remote diagnostics, etc.
The system consists of two kites, with one of the two always generating power. The kites are programmed to fly in a figure eight pattern, accessing stronger wind speeds that generate lift. The tension induced results in a 100-200 m line spooled out from a drum on the ground, which is connected to a generator. While one kite is in the generation phase the other is in the retraction phase, to ensure continuous production of energy. In the generation phase, the tether is unreeled from a drum which produces electricity while the retraction phase reels in the tether of the kite.
Kites are reeled in and maintained at ground level. All components can be serviced at an accessible height.
The design aims to provide energy at a lower cost than a conventional wind turbine and use 85% less energy. KPS also aims to generate 15% more energy than a wind turbine at the same location.
Potential hazards related to the operation of this product include the risk of bird collisions and an impact on the natural heritage of the region. The visual obstruction to the surrounding landscape must also be considered.
These papers present general information about Kite Powered Systems:
Van der Vlugt, R., Peschel, J. and Schmehl R., 2013, Design and experimental characterization of a pumping kite power system, Ahrens, U., Diehl, M. and Schmehl, R., eds. Airborne Wind Energy Berlin: Springer.
Maass, J. and Erhard, M., 2013, Software system architecture for control of tethered kites, Ahrens, U., Diehl, M., Schmehl, R., eds. Airborne Wind Energy, Berlin: Springer, pp. 599–611.
KPS predicts that the technology might not require government subsidies as the cost of energy from its offshore installments will be significantly lower than conventional offshore wind turbines.
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