The PJ Tatler

Progress: A Wind Turbine That Provides Power And WiFi

Wind power finally takes off.

We might be seeing wind turbines in the skies instead of fields soon. A Massachusetts Institute of Technology startup has come up with a new type of floating turbine that’s more efficient — and can deliver power and WiFi connectivity to remote areas.

The invention could have a major impact in places like Alaska, with vast swaths of land that are off the grid, and without traditional sources of power and internet access.

The startup, Altaeros Energies, developed the BAT-Buoyant Airborne Turbine, which is filled with helium and can rise to 1,000 to 2,000 feet to generate power from strong, high-altitude winds. Because the turbines can access these high-altitude winds, they generate roughly double the energy of standard turbines.

It took all this time for someone to decide to bring the turbine to the wind rather than vice-versa. Anything that gets me closer to my dream of having a shack in the middle of the desert where I can still get online gets tacit preliminary approval from me. Here is a video about the thing: