Smarter Uses for Displaced Wind Energy

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T-box designed by Qian Jiang and Alessandro Leonetti Luparini

Here is where the proverbial bag of wind might be a very good thing to have on hand.

Two designers have created an innovative product meant to capture displaced wind from passing trains or subways and convert that wind power to electricity. Called the T-box, the device was designed by Qian Jiang and Alessandro Leonetti Luparini, winning a silver medal at the 2010 Lite-on awards exhibited in Taiwan.

As Paul Ridden writes for gizmag, “Unlike innovations such as the Solar Roadways project and Solar Wind concept, the T-box device wouldn’t have to depend on a natural energy source, but instead one that is produced as a consequence of human activity.”

China’s Jiang and Italy’s Luparini believe that 150 of these devices could be installed along a kilometer (0.62 miles) of track and as a train speeds along, the turbines inside the device would generate electricity.

An animation of how the product works is shown on this Vimeo video: T-box

On a Coroflot website Jiang describes the T-box as follows: “This is a new generation of wind power generator. T-BOX applies the same principle as those traditional ones, but not like them located against wind on the coast. T-box can be placed along the railway or subway. It is half-buried underground between the concrete sleepers, which does not disturb the normal train operating at all. On one hand it uses the underneath waste space efficiently, on the other hand it uses wind power from the train movement optimistically.”

Jiang has not mentioned busy sections of expressways and their unending supply of wind-producing vehicles traveling at high speeds as sources for wind collection, which would seem to be natural locations for this wind-to-energy concept. Once in place, a T-box facility might even feed electricity to recharging stations for electric cars.

Innovative concepts such as the T-box are appealing, though – requiring an entrepreneurial company and an infusion of capital to demonstrate that the technology shows proof of economic viability.

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Glenn Meyers

is a writer, producer, and director. Meyers was editor and site director of Green Building Elements, a contributing writer for CleanTechnica, and is founder of Green Streets MediaTrain, a communications connection and eLearning hub. As an independent producer, he's been involved in the development, production and distribution of television and distance learning programs for both the education industry and corporate sector. He also is an avid gardener and loves sustainable innovation.

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