Salient White Elephant

March 1, 2009

Teetering Tower Wind Turbine

This blog post elaborates on the earlier posts – Scalable Tower for Very Large Wind Turbine, and Turbine de Saint Louis.


For simplicity, the tower in the diagram has only two legs (an actual tower would have at least three). The nacelles do not rotate with respect to the vertical part of the tower that supports them. Instead, both nacelles, the vertical part of the tower, the teetering axis, and the teetering mechanism all yaw together as a unit.

Counter-Rotating Direct Drive Version

In this version, the wind rotors are counter-rotating. The generator is located in the lower nacelle. The energy generated by the upper wind rotor is mechanically transmitted to the lower nacelle. One wind rotor drives the generator rotor, and the other wind rotor drives the generator “stator” in the opposite direction. This doubles the effective generator rpm, and thus may eliminate the gearbox. Furthermore, decreasing the weight of the upper nacelle while increasing the weight of the lower nacelle may increase the stability of the teetering action.


Here’s a variation that allows both the rotors and the tower to teeter:


A tail fin may be added to help yaw the machine. (For explanation of tail fin, Scalable Tower for Very Large Wind Turbine.)


Here’s another variation:

Here’s a variation with guy wires:



Not sure what to call the next one, but whatever it is, it has almost zero tower shadow. This might render its design less sensitive to resonance in the strong vertical part of the tower. In addition to the double axis teetering of the top part of the tower, all three rotors can teeter. This is so because two of the rotors are downwind, and the upwind rotor has no tower behind it to collide with.

Triple rotor 2-axis teetering wind turbine.
Now let’s add some tail fins:



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