Ferber’s portable vertical axis wind turbine promises to be a lightweight option for providing off-grid electricity in places with abundant winds and problematic access to direct sunlight.
The device is designed to pack down into about the size of an umbrella for transport and storage, and then to quickly unfold into a three-bladed Savonius-style turbine which employs a rugged fabric as the blades. The telescoping mast is then staked to the ground, where it can catch the wind from all directions. The turbine is said to be “suitable for unsteady and gusty winds,” and it could potentially be put to use in conditions which might otherwise be unsuitable for solar, such as overcast days and at night.
The current design is opimized to be used for smaller USB devices and can be handled by one single person. It produces a constant output of 5 Watts at a windspeed of 18 km/h. Nevertheless, the system is easily scaleable and the size could be adapted for varying scenarios or a communal use.