The new 6 foot diameter gearless wind turbine from Earthtronics and branded by Honeywell operates in winds as low as 2 mph. At 95 pounds it is light enough to be mounted on pole, roof, tripod or even the side of building.
The turbines will be sold with a smart controller inverter which can manage power from 2 turbines. Each turbine can produce in excess of 1500 kw per year. Once utilities standardize net metering, the company says they will accommodate it, but initially it will be a closed loop system.
The company says that its design eliminates the major source of noise, cavitation, from other turbines. That combined with its size will make it more welcome in residential settings than large tower mounted turbines.
Without gears it is intended to be easier to maintain. A five year limited warranty is standard though it is designed for a twenty year life span.
Initially the units will be sold through Ace Hardware stores in the autumn of 2009 but in 2010 it will be offered through other retailers, catalogs and contractors. The unit is to be sold including a package of 30 compact fluorescent bulbs. Without the reduction from the bulbs the system alone is said to produce 18% of an average homes electrical usage.
The company is in the process of training certified installers. Completion of a one day $325 course will gain you full certification benefits. Purchasers will find certified installers through a Honeywell website.
For more information here are links to pdf's : Energy Generation Information Energy Data, Frequently Asked Questions, Honeywell Wind Turbine Brochure, Honeywell Wind Turbine Certified Training, US Incentive List, Mounting System and Connection Snap Shot .
Thanks to Gary Krysztopik from Zwheelz for passing this along through the San Antonio Environment Meetup board.