Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Energy Efficiency

Cheaper, Quieter, More Efficient Wind Turbines Coming Soon to a Rooftop Near You

new research leads to more efficient, less expensive wind turbinesThe Fluid Dynamics Division of the American Physical Society is meeting in California this week, and the event promises a glimpse at the next generation of high-efficiency, low-noise wind turbines. Although it may seem like a case of gilding the lily – APS notes that the U.S. has been adding more wind generating capacity than coal for the past two years – researchers anticipate new advances in wind turbine design that will significantly lower the cost of wind power production. That’s not just great news for grid-connected power users, but it could also help boost micro-wind turbines into the affordability range for many more households and businesses.

Wind Turbines and Turbulence

Variations in air flow have a big effect on wind turbine efficiency. Turbines perform best when air flow is constant, a condition rarely achieved in nature.  One new technology under development at Syracuse University addresses the issue with a “smart” flow controller, which adjusts the turbine blades to compensate for gusts, turbulence, and other variations. Researchers anticipate that the system could also help reduce noise and vibration.

Wind Turbines and Drag

Meanwhile over at the University of Minnesota, researchers are developing a unique blade surface to reduce drag, consisting of small, shallow triangular grooves or riblets.  This approach has been used on the sails on America’s Cup yachts, as well as on aircraft. Though the factors affecting wind turbine blades will differ, based on a drag reduction of 6 percent achieved by the use of riblets on aircraft, the researchers expect a significant savings.

Image:  Wind turbines by the russians are here on

Appreciate CleanTechnica’s originality? Consider becoming a CleanTechnica Member, Supporter, Technician, or Ambassador — or a patron on Patreon.
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.
Written By

Tina specializes in military and corporate sustainability, advanced technology, emerging materials, biofuels, and water and wastewater issues. Tina’s articles are reposted frequently on Reuters, Scientific American, and many other sites. Views expressed are her own. Follow her on Twitter @TinaMCasey and Google+.


#1 most loved electric vehicle, solar energy, and battery news & analysis site in the world.


Support our work today!


Power CleanTechnica: $3/Month

Tesla News Solar News EV News Data Reports


EV Sales Charts, Graphs, & Stats


Our Electric Car Driver Report

30 Electric Car Benefits

Tesla Model 3 Video

Renewable Energy 101 In Depth

solar power facts

Tesla News

EV Reviews

Home Efficiency

You May Also Like


The American Jobs Act showers the heat pump with climate action love, as part of push for building electrification.

Clean Power

Minnesota eyeballs renewable energy to make fertilizer and fuel from water and air, kicking natural gas and diesel off the farm.

Clean Power

University researchers examine eagle physiology to inform and improve eagle deterrents

Clean Power

Washington, D.C. — Today the U.S. Department of Energy announced that eight teams have been selected to participate in the second round of the...

Copyright © 2021 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.