IIT Madras’ ‘Combined Power Generation Technology’ concept (Courtesy of IIT Madras)

Researchers from India patent combined wind and tidal energy generation technology

Researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) have patented a ‘Combined Power Generation Technology’ system that can generate electricity from both wind and tidal energy sources.

IIT Madras’ ‘Combined Power Generation Technology’ concept (Courtesy of IIT Madras)

The current innovation is an energy converter system that can be deployed in coastal areas, depending on their power requirements, according to IIT Madras.

At present, the researchers are focused on scalability and affordability and are trying to build a cost-effective prototype using 3D-Printing and other technologies.

According to them, a wind turbine mounted on a vehicle’s roof will employ the converter technology to generate wind energy as well as convert tidal energy into electrical energy. The energy output of the system or gadget is entirely renewable and sustainable, and the roof-mounted solar panel could also be used to power other equipment on mobile vehicles.

The research was undertaken by Sadham Usean Ramasamy, PhD research scholar of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at IIT Madras, and A. Seshadri Sekhar, a former head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT Madras, who is currently on deputation to IIT Palakkad as its director.

Elaborating on the key aspects of this innovation, Sekhar said: “The current invention creates electricity using only one vertical axis wind turbine, a horizontal converter mechanism, and no hydraulic set generator based on pendulum support.

“The converter also has a variety of height adjustable guider support mechanisms to help regulate the height of the elliptical plate attached to the main shaft. The current idea, on the other hand, lacks a horizontal axis turbine and is entirely onshore, therefore there is no severe corrosion problem.

“Furthermore, without the need for a submarine connection, the generated electricity can be easily delivered from the transformer. It also has fewer operating expenses, requires less maintenance, and produces clean energy. It can also be used as a moving vehicle. Tidal energy is a clean, sustainable energy source with significant potential and the unusual capacity to be totally predictable.”

Commenting on a timeline for possible deployment of this technology, Sekhar added: “The converter system may need to be relocated depending on the power demand in the coastal area. The system’s or gadget’s energy output is fully renewable. The solar panel on the roof is also used to power other equipment on mobile vehicles.”

The innovations employed in IIT Madras’ new renewable energy concept

IIT Madras’ wind and tidal concept features ‘unique and specialized’ mechanisms (Courtesy of IIT Madras)
IIT Madras’ wind and tidal concept features ‘unique and specialized’ mechanisms (Courtesy of IIT Madras)

The IIT Madras researchers listed the unique mechanisms of the current ‘Combined Power Generation Technology’ concept which have specialized features.

These include spring-assisted mechanism, adjustable guider structural support mechanism, main shaft with five converter gear shaft mechanisms, direction converter gear mechanism, floor level adjustable mechanism, and gear coupling mechanism.

Highlighting the novel aspects, Ramasamy said: “This technology will potentially entail fewer expenditures, require less maintenance and produce clean and sustainable energy.”

The technology developed by IIT Madras researchers envisages locating the entire converter onshore.

Hence, there would be no major corrosion issues. Additionally, the converter is a remote-based system that can be moved to any location based on wave height as well as power generation requirements.

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