Solar has really come down in price since the last time I looked. We wondered if we could start powering our shop off of solar. A good project would be to see if we can build a small scale solar array which would generate power back to the shop and keep it under $1/watt. This would have to include everything from the solar cells to getting usable power out the other end. So we started searching around.
For this build we wanted to make a low cost wind turbine that could give us some good usable power at a low dollar-per-watt budget. We started out designing a 7′ 6″ diameter turbine and used a motor that has a max output of 1,100 Watts. Our goal is to make a wind turbine that costs less than $1 per watt to build and operate. This includes the tower, the wind turbine, and the inverter to tie it in to our electrical system. We were pressed for time on this build because we had very high winds forcasted just two days after we started the build. We needed to come up with something quick to get this thing in the air and see what it could do.
In this episode the Tech Junkies tackle cheap alternative energy systems. Ben and Eric guide you through the process of assembling your own solar panels for around 50 cents per watt and how to construct a low cost wind turbine. This is only the beginning…more to come in part two!