Solar and wind energy solution powers public lights
The system, developed after four years of research in collaboration with the company Eolgreen, is designed for inter-urban roads, motorways, urban parks and other public areas. The system is claimed to be the first of its kind in the world and reduces the cost by 20% compared with conventional public lighting systems.
The prototype is 10 metres high and is fitted with a solar panel, a wind turbine and a battery. The turbine runs at a speed of 10 to 200 rpm and has a maximum output of 400 W. The developers’ aim is to make the LED-based lighting system even more environmentally efficient, so work is being done on a second prototype generator that runs at a lower speed of 10 to 60 rpm and has a lower output 100 W. An electronic control system manages the flow of energy between the solar panel, the wind turbine, the battery and the light.
“It takes very little wind to produce energy. The generator that has been developed can start working at a wind speed of only 1.7 metres per second (m/s), whereas current wind turbines need more than 2.5 m/s,” explained Ramon Bargalló a researcher at UPC. “This low intensity can provide six nights of electricity without wind or sun.”
Eolgreen has signed agreements with the port of Huelva and the municipal authorities of Sant Boi de Llobregat, Girona and several towns in Andalusia to supply the systems. In the course of 2015, the company plans to produce 700 of these street lights.
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