Each year it seems like something new in the world of green energy comes out that could revolutionize the way in which we power things forever. This year is no exception as students at the Technological University of Mexico came up with a way to produce electricity for low income homes using a micro turbine. The system is called Pluvia and it could lower the price of electricity for good.
How it all works
The device works much the same as traditional dam turbines except for the fact that it is much smaller and requires far less water to operate. The fallen rain water causes the turbine to turn and this causes electricity to be generated through motion. The system is linked together in a way that it first collects falling water from the roof which is then funneled through a pipe toward the turbine itself. After this the electricity generated from the small turbine is used to power portable twelve volt batteries which then serve as power for LED lamps. While this system is not yet powerful enough to give energy to an entire home it allows for the availability of power even in areas where traditional power sources are cut off.
What this means for green energy in the future
There has been a lot of discussion about the cost and modification hurtles when it comes to using green energy in homes. Many people still are not comfortable with using solar panels on roofs because they have not advanced enough to where they look good on top of a home. This has also caused communities like those near me to outlaw them simply because they fear that the look of the homes would scare away potential buyers in the area. That’s why an invention like this could help to swing the tide of resistance. In this particular system there is little to nothing that has to be done with the home itself and better yet it can be hidden from view so as to not create a negative impression that so many communities fear. If the technology can advance enough that whole homes can be powered by this technology there is no reason that the turbine itself can’t be placed into the basement of homes or some distance away in some manner. Having this type of technology will also mean that people will be in control of how much and how often they use their own electricity. This invention will also have a huge impact on the overall environment because it opens the door for the possibility that power lines will no longer be needed to power homes.
The impact on developing areas
I can’t say enough about how important technology like this is for developing areas. Too often it becomes difficult to build the proper infrastructure necessary to power certain areas and just like we are finding with internet, some places are simply left in the dark. This particular type of technology will solve that problem because it will allow for electricity to be brought into developing areas at low cost and better yet it will give other areas a backup power source. Setting up a filtration system for the water as these students have also done makes for a dual purpose device in developing areas. On one hand they will be able to provide low cost electricity and on the other hand they will get the byproduct of clean drinking water. My hope is that in the future we see this type of technology everywhere and that the power companies themselves get involved in alternative energy sources more so that we can see an acceleration of their application.