I just caught a really cool video on the architectural idea of integrating vertical and horizontal-axis turbines into urban design and planning. From a company called Aerotecture comes the Aeroturbine — a quiet, vibration-free, bird-safe, turbine that can be installed on existing rooftops or built into the architecture of new buildings to provide clean renewable electricity at its site of consumption. According to the site, the unique characteristics of these turbines allow them to be self-regulating in the face of changing wind speeds and also utilize multi-directional and gusting breezes. From the site,

The structural features of the Aeroturbine allow for its easy integration into new or existing buildings: the modular/stackable cages are additive and can be mounted in a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal orientation. There are currently two models of Aeroturbines available, the 510V and the 520H. Both models of the Aeroturbine may be easily integrated with solar photovoltaic systems.

In order to operate efficiently, Aeroturbines must be installed 40 ft. above the ground, above or away from surrounding trees and other obstruction, and in an area with average wind speeds of at least 10 mph.

Already this year, we’re starting to see some ew structures incorporate turbines into their designs. It’s a welcomed trend that shows renewable energy isn’t something that needs to be hidden. It can be celebrated and beautiful — as well as practical and useful to a building’s energy footprint.

For more information, check out the company’s official site.

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