- How much power does a PowerNEST generate?
- Where can I order a PowerNEST?
- Somebody offered me a roof wind and solar combination. Is this similar to PowerNEST?
- What if there is no wind?
- What if there is no sun?
- Many small windmills have proven inefficient in the urban environment, why would PowerNEST be different?
- What is a Venturi Effect?
- Does PowerNEST make noise, or does it have acoustic annoyance?
- Does it cause vibrations?
- How heavy is a PowerNEST?
- What is the impact on the existing roof? Will an existing roof be able to support it without additional structure?
- What is the cost of a PowerNEST?
- Does the efficiency reduce over its lifetime?
- Does IBIS Power give a warranty on outputs?
- How does it connect to the existing electrical system? Converter? Inverter?
- Does PowerNEST come with a battery?
- What data does it provide?
- What maintenance or installation needs are required?
- Is it safe, what happens in a storm, anyhow can I secure it?
- Does PowerNEST solve wind nuisance problems?
- Who do I call if it breaks?
- Who do I call if it does makes noise for any reason?
- What happens if the air conditioning unit is under the solar roof?
- What about the roof membrane and maintenance?
- What is induced panel cooling?
- How does the PowerNEST work in hot countries?
- How does the PowerNEST deal with snow?
- How does the PowerNEST work on an island?
- How about corrosion?
- Is PowerNEST safe for hurricanes or typhoons?
- Can I go off the grid with PowerNEST?
- Does PowerNEST generate as much as a 3MW windmill?
- Can I apply subsidies on PowerNEST?
- Do I need to remove the GSM antennas of façade maintenance system?
- Is PowerNEST bird and bat safe?
- What kind of permits do I need?
- What is the delivery time?
- Is there a minimum height?
- Is there a maximum height?
- I already installed solar panels on my roof, Can I still place PowerNEST?
1. How much power does a PowerNEST generate?
The total amount PowerNEST generates depends on its location, orientation, roof height, building shape, flat roof size, and surrounding urban obstacles. By the size and orientation of the roof, we determine how many modules containing solar and wind energy parts fit in an optimal configuration. We have developed an advanced prediction software to estimate the solar and wind energy potential specifically taking the local conditions into account. In case the highest level of prediction precision is desired, we can place a solar and/or wind meter on the roof or simulate the building in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to determine the building interaction with the wind flows.
2. Where can I order a PowerNEST?
PowerNEST can be ordered HERE. One of our team members will advise you how PowerNEST works, and how and where it can best be installed for optimum results. If you live outside Europe, we will bring you directly in touch with one of our partners abroad.
3. Somebody offered me a roof wind and solar combination. Is this similar to PowerNEST?
PowerNEST is a unique product developed in 2012 and worldwide patented by IBIS Power. If you come across products that have similar looks, promised performance, but not our brand or labeling, they are not our high-end developed technology including our tested safety, optimizations, and performances.
4. What if there is no wind?
If there is no wind, there is usually sun and vice versa. That’s why it is a great idea to combine wind and solar energy in a single building solution. Throughout the year, wind and sun across the globe are complementary resources. Think about the evening breeze and afternoon sun, but also the windy winter months and sunny summers. Wind availability on coastal locations, on islands, closer to the poles, and on multistory buildings are highest, while solar availability is highest close to the equator, on islands, and in coastal areas. Even though you don’t feel the wind at the street level, usually there is still a substantial amount of wind on your roof.
On a day and year scale, the wind adds to the sun where PowerNEST provides an almost continuous power level of production. This is also beneficial for battery life and reduces the required capacity if you need one. In the colder climates, most electric energy is used during the winter for lighting, heating, and home appliances as we spend most time inside. The wind energy parts of PowerNEST produce most energy during these months.
5. What if there is no sun?
If there is no sun, there is usually wind and vice versa. That’s why it is a great idea to combine solar and wind energy in a single building solution. Throughout the year, sun and wind across the globe are complementary resources. Think about the afternoon sun and the evening breeze, but also the sunny summers and windy winter months. Solar availability is the highest close to the equator, on islands, and in coastal areas, while wind availability is highest on coastal locations, on islands, closer to the poles, and on multistory buildings are highest.
On a day and year scale, the sun adds to the wind where PowerNEST provides an almost continuous power level of production. This is also beneficial for battery life and reduces the required capacity if you need one. In the warmer climates, most electric energy is used during midday and the summer months for cooling, lighting, and home appliances as we spend that time of the day usually inside. The solar energy parts of PowerNEST produce most energy during these times and months.
6. Many small windmills have proven to be inefficient in the urban environment, why would PowerNEST be different?
Cities and urban environments have lower wind speeds and lots of turbulence due to the many obstructions (buildings, trees, etc.). In addition, the wind has the tendency to blow far over the roof where the installed wind turbine is often placed. This is usually close to the roof edge. We call this area the wake of the wind flow, which can be translated as the “shadow of the wind” when explaining it in solar terms. This significantly influences the total possible output of a small wind turbine as often the startup wind speed is not even reached and the amount of turbulence creates an unsteady wind interaction. This caused the small wind turbine industry to get a bad image as some advice and instructions to customers were missing around where to place the turbine for optimum performance. Generally, we advise you to not place a small windmill on your roof unless the limiting wake issue is addressed, and expert advice has been given on the location and resulting power output expectations.
PowerNEST is specially designed to overcome these limitations as it smartly captures the facade interacting wind flows and accelerates it towards the internally centralized turbine. Measurements have shown that the turbine already starts producing energy at 2 m/s (7,2 km/h or 4.5mph) which is almost always present on a high-rise roof. The funnel is designed to reduce the turbulence making the overall energy conversion much more efficient. The turbine works more efficiently due to higher wind speeds, more optimal due to lower turbulence impact, and with more annual operational hours, making it especially effective in the urban environment.
7. What is a Venturi Effect?
The Venturi Effect is the effect of flow acceleration and pressure drop that occurs when a fluid or gas is guided through a constricted section of a tube. This effect was first reported by Giovanni Battista Venturi in 1738 and is today used in turbojets, car engine carburetors, vacuum pumps, and many more applications. PowerNEST uses the ground principles of this effect, however, it is not a full Venturi principle, but consists of additional aerodynamic principles to reach maximum optimized wind flow interaction with the turbine for the highest annual power output.
8. Does PowerNEST make noise?
A turbine is a moving object in the wind and will always make some kind of sound. IBIS Power choose a turbine that has integrated innovations creating minimum sound effects compared to other turbines on the market. The sound level produced by the turbine depends on the wind speed. Qualified institutions have performed sound measurements which were also applied in acoustic simulations of projects where the sound in these dense urban environments with many façade reflections was within the strong acoustic legislation and building code for residential areas. Measurements in running installations also concluded that nothing could be heard inside the building, and only during a strong storm, the turbine could be softly heard from the balcony while the sound of the storm was measured as much louder.
9. Does it cause vibrations?
The turbine is the only mechanical moving part of PowerNEST. It is designed to be placed on an 8-meter pole and is therefore engineered for minimum absorption of vibrations in its bearing. PowerNEST has no pole, but a direct fixture on a steel structure with an absorbing basing in between. This minimizes the chance for any possible vibration to be transmitted to the building. Measurement has been carried out by external parties where zero vibrations were measured in the building connecting structure.
10. How heavy is a PowerNEST?
PowerNEST exists of the corner and mid modules of 7,2×7,2m (23.6×23.6ft), solar extensions 7,2×3,6m (23.6×15.7ft), and louver frames of 7,2m (23.6ft) consisting of frames with solar panels and/or wind turbines. The internal steel structure and sheeting material are different for each module. Overall, the distributed weight compares to 10cm (3 inches) of water (±100kg/m2 or ±20.5psf) on top of the roof. In all our projects we ask a structural engineer to perform a check on the structural capabilities of the host building. The weight of PowerNEST on even the oldest buildings we looked at has never been a limiting issue.
11. What is the impact on the existing roof? Will an existing roof be able to support it without additional structure?
PowerNEST is designed to not load the roof slab but finds its support only on the main structural elements of the building to carry the structural loading directly to the foundation. This way it can be added on any flat roof where it will be anchored waterproof through the roof layer into the main building structure. Furthermore, research performed by the Eindhoven University of Technology on the most common building types indicated that in the worst case the foundation will have a 3% load increase. In many cases, this is a negligible additional foundation load. Nevertheless, in all our projects we will include a roof and building survey to be performed by a structural engineer who will qualify the building and its structure for the additional loading and its designed distribution.
12. What is the cost of a PowerNEST?
The cost of a PowerNEST roof installation depends on the size, number, and kind of modules, and location of the installation. On request, we can provide a Quickscan determining the roof energy potential including the number of modules and associated hardware costs [click here]. The hardware includes everything from beams, to panels, turbines, cables, and inverters. The installation costs vary per building and site as not every building is the same. After interest in the project is expressed based on the Quickscan results, the next step is to quote the installation costs provided by external parties.
13. Does the efficiency reduce over its lifetime?
PowerNEST is delivered with the best-value-for-money technology today available based on upfront and lifetime cost (CAPEX, OPEX), quality, efficiency, safety, suppliers reliability, and availability. Turbines (parts) must be replaced after 20 years, solar panels after 20 to 25 years, while the structure lasts 50 years. The efficiency of the solar panels reduces over time by approximately 0,6% per year. By our maintenance plan, we offer to keep monitoring the outputs and offer replacements and upgrades. With the current developments of solar panels and wind turbines, PowerNEST can only get better.
14. Does IBIS Power guarantee the power outputs?
We do provide a guarantee on the projected annual outputs. Our guarantee is based on a three-year cycle of average outputs as the weather may differ from year to year and we provide a 75% guarantee of the projected total energy outputs. If we do not reach up to our promises, due to whatever reason, in good agreement with the client we will compensate through technical measures, upgrades, or a financial loss compensation. Additionally, we offer a maintenance plan to guarantee the lifelong best performance.
15. How does it connect to the existing electrical system, converter, inverter?
PowerNEST is a universal system that can be delivered for any electrical system in the world. In most cases, the system is connected to the building’s electrical grid. The electrical system is split up into 2 streams. First, the wind energy generator with a separate controller and inverter. The second for solar energy is connected to a separate inverter. Finally, they come together to give the electricity to either a storage system, the public grid, or directly to your building.
16. Does PowerNEST come with a battery?
PowerNEST does standard not come with a battery as many countries have net-metering regulations which make batteries obsolete and financially unattractive. All electric equipment is ready to be connected to a battery system that we can source according to the demand and supply patterns of the building to find the best type of battery available.
17. What data does it provide?
Our software is continuously measuring the energy outputs logging all the data determining the efficiency at any time of the day. All data is directly logged from the first spins of the turbine. These data contain the generated power of the unit, the solar and wind conditions, and the efficiencies. This is accessible from all over the world using a web address and personal log-in details.
18. What maintenance or installation needs are required?
The PowerNEST is delivered with a maintenance plan to secure the performance and lifetime of the installation. All maintenance activities can be executed without any extra means like scaffolding, which makes it low in cost and highly efficient. We have all safety measures and walk paths integrated in our modules for optimum access. The diversity of building structures and installations makes every service of the building an individual case, but we designed the structure in such a way that it covers 95% of flat roof types of structures.
19. What happens in a storm, anyhow can I secure it?
The PowerNEST is designed according to Eurocode regulations for loading and safety of structures. This building code is very similar to the ASCE code in the United States and other comparable codes internationally. The turbine is equipped with electrical and mechanical safety systems to prevent any damage to the turbine and unit itself. The brakes will be activated under high wind speeds at 18 m/s (65 km/h or 40 mph) by an integrated response system. The survival speed of the turbine is 60 m/s (216 km/h, 134 mph or hurricane category 3-4). The PowerNEST structure is safe in all weather conditions and has already withstood the 50-year extreme storm on January 3rd, 2018, in the Netherlands. As PowerNEST consists of a steel structure, earthquakes, hurricanes, and typhoons are not a great engineering challenge, but still require testing and certification according to the local building standards.
20. Does PowerNEST solve wind nuisance problems?
PowerNEST has an exceptional capability to reduce wind nuisance on the pedestrian level of high buildings. We discovered in our simulations studies a reduction of wind speeds by 80% solving a major urban issue. As a result, noise, accidental safety, and debris issues, pollution hot spots, additional canopy costs, and permit issues are resolved while living comfort and neighborhood value are lifted. CONTACT US for more information.
21. Who do I call if it breaks?
We work with local professional installation partners who are trained to perform maintenance and problem solving. Our technology components are sealed, and we strongly suggest to not use an untrained company as warranty is lost when our seal is broken. We will monitor your installation during the first year continuously and continue if you take a maintenance plan with us. Even when you do not know something is wrong, we have already sent our maintenance team already to fix it.
22. Who do I call if it does make noise?
If in the unlikely event it occurs that something happens which may cause an annoyance or bother which is enough reason to stop the turbines spinning, we can shut everything down remotely. We try to avoid this as much as we can as we like the turbine spinning better than sleeping. In the event that a code red storm is predicted which has the risk to harm the installation, we also shut down the turbines for an amount of time as an extra safety caution.
23. What happens if the air conditioning unit is under the solar roof?
Placing an air conditioning or cooling unit under PowerNEST has a positive effect on the cooling efficiency of the air conditioning installation as it is covered by the sun. PowerNEST has a height of 4,8m (15.7ft) which provides substantial outflow and shading capacity for the air conditioning, especially considering that the wind flow exiting the turbine will be projected towards these installations. On average the air conditioning efficiency should improve approximately 10% on an annual basis.
24. What about the roof membrane and maintenance?
The combined modules of PowerNEST are designed to completely cover the roof and keeps away the solar UV radiation whereas the roof membrane will age much less during its lifetime. In addition, most damages to the roof exist during the summer when it is a hot day and all of the sudden a thunder or hailstorm comes in dropping the roof surface temperature dramatically in a very short time. This temperature shock causes an aged roof membrane to crack resulting in leakages. PowerNEST avoids this type of damages as it delays the fast temperature drops, and is expected to extend the roof membranes lifetime by at least 10 years. When the roof membrane is up for replacement, the roof is everywhere reachable.
25. What is induced panel cooling?
PowerNEST is designed to aerodynamically capture, guide, and control the accelerated wind flow through its wind and solar energy system. This creates the extra advantage that we can steer the wind flow under the solar panels patented to create a wind cooling mechanism increasing the panel efficiency [patented]. The efficiency of solar panels drops by increasing temperature. PowerNEST reduces this problem resulting in an increased annual output of all solar panels with 10% to 15% depending on the local climate conditions.
26. How does the PowerNEST work in hot climates?
Often the hotter the country, the more sun, so the better performance of PowerNEST. PowerNEST has the extra advantage that it creates a layer of shade on the existing roof layer which is usually full year-round exposed to the sun. The top floor of the building suffers a significantly higher cooling load and even in the colder climates hot summer nights with sleepless nights for its residents. PowerNEST puts the top roof layer in the shade reducing the heat penetration dramatically while the continuous airflow enables active cooling of the roof. On average, the cooling load of the top floor will reduce by 38% by placing a PowerNEST on top. The panels in PowerNEST are also cooled introducing efficiency benefits, see “Induced panel cooling”.
27. How does the PowerNEST deal with snow?
In the Northern countries, snow can stay all winter with a significant snow load on the roof. Up to today, PowerNEST is not designed yet to carry such a high snow load but can be adjusted easily by structurally strengthening measures to carry larger loads.
28. How does the PowerNEST work on an island?
Islands usually have a lot of wind as the wind flows are only a little obstructed or carried directly from the sea. This is the best condition for PowerNEST to work in. Tropical islands also have a lot of suns, which adds to the total power potential making it a very attractive investment opportunity. With a battery backup, the wind and solar combination enable off-grid possibilities even for the larger buildings.
29. How about corrosion?
PowerNEST is designed and protected for corrosive environments like coastal regions and islands. According to the local conditions, the steel structure can be double galvanized or coated by C4 to C5 coating standards. Other parts are made of aluminum consisting of corrosion-safe alloys and composite parts.
30. Is PowerNEST safe for hurricanes or typhoons?
PowerNEST needs to be classified for code requirements for hurricanes and typhoons prone regions. Academics have already studied PowerNEST and concluded it is not a big challenge to make PowerNEST safe for hazardous weather conditions as its main structure consists of steel and aluminum parts. The solar panels and turbine are both certified to withstand hazardous weather conditions according to the US and Japanese safety regulations.
31. Can I go off the grid with PowerNEST?
Going off the grid depends on your energy demand in relation to the power potential PowerNEST can generate on your roof. In addition, peak times need to be taken into consideration to ensure all the building uses can be covered by the energy generation on-site. Generating from wind and solar will make it a lot easier to go off the grid, and reduces the battery capacity to overcome the risk of energy downtimes. Our team can look into your case investigating the local possibilities to go off-grid and design a system accordingly.
32. Does PowerNEST generate as much as a 3MW windmill?
PowerNEST does not generate as much as the large wind mills you find in oceans or windmill farms. The technologies have a different scale of economy and purpose and are therefore not comparable. One will never place a large windmill in the city, and it doesn’t make sense to place a PowerNEST on a large windmill pole.
An idea of the differences of scale:
A large wind turbine with a capacity of 3MW [GE, 2018] has a rotor diameter ranging from 130 to 137m (wind area of 14.741 m2) with a pole height of 110 to 164m (comparable to a 55 level building or Maastoren Rotterdam). Unfortunately, it remains unclear what these turbines generate as websites do not say much about it, but it is estimated to be around 6,000 MWh/year with a cost of approximately 7M Euro and preparation time of 7 years mainly for long permitting processes. The operation and maintenance are also not given but are known to be complex and expensive in ocean locations and at a great height.
PowerNEST has a wind interaction area of 7,2×4,8m (23.6×15.7ft) with an area of 34,6 m2 (372sqft) which is 426 times smaller than the windmill blade area. It is placed directly on the building and can also easily be reached for operation and maintenance. The power harvest of PowerNEST lays between 19 and 30 MWh/year in the Netherlands, which is also 315 to 200 times smaller than a large windmill while the cost are in a range of 140 to 180 times smaller without taking the grid upgrade costs in the equation.
Altogether, it is impossible to compare the two technologies. PowerNEST provides decentralized energy on top of your building feeding your building’s energy demand directly and providing the possibility of independence of the grid, while windmills are a centralized power solution that makes you dependent on the common energy politics and extra grid costs. In addition, windmills do not offer the extra benefits of PowerNEST like reduced building cooling demand, an extension of roof membrane lifetime, the architectural attractive addition on your roof, and reduced and secured energy costs.
33. Can I apply subsidies on PowerNEST?
In most countries, there are subsidies or state support vehicles to invest in renewables and make your building more sustainable. Subsidies often change over time, and often have complex conditions to be applicable or how they can benefit the investment. In the Netherlands, there is the SDE++, PCR Regeling, Net-metering, and other arrangements to lower the investment cost or increase the returns on investment. All subsidies are applicable, but depend on the type of building, size of the installation, estimated returns, use of energy, power connections, and type of building. As soon as you have recognized a project we will look together at what the available subsidies are to make the sustainability transformation of your building even more financially attractive.
34. Do I need to remove the GSM antennas of façade maintenance system?
We have developed a solution to integrate GSM antennas and façade maintenance systems into PowerNEST. Today, the sustainability movement is strong and building owners need to remove these facilities if they want to make their building sustainable and meet government demands. As we have a solution to integrate these, both can remain and serve the building and residents.
35. Is PowerNEST bird and bat safe?
At the time of writing, we have installations standing for 4 years in bird-rich environments with zero causalities. The issues of bird and bat causalities exist from large windmills with blade tip speeds of 200 km/h (140mph) which can hit birds and other animals passing by. In the case of PowerNEST, the birds rest on top of the structure but do not nest inside and try to fly through the turbine swipe area.
36. What kind of permits do I need?
Depending on country and city, construction and aesthetic permits can apply. Most often, this considers maximum building height, overhang, structural impact, environmental impact including noise or vibrations, and aesthetic impact to the neighborhood including looks, configuration, customizations, and color. Most items are addressed with calculations, drawings, and reports ready on file for permit application. Permit processing times vary per city.
37. What is the delivery time?
Depending mostly on the permitting time and site possibilities, PowerNEST can be delivered 4 months after the official order is booked and prepaid.
38. Is there a minimum height?
The minimum height to apply PowerNEST is 5 building levels or 15m (50ft). This is the common height raised above surrounding trees, dwelling houses and most of the. obstacles to captures the highest wind flow with the least turbulence. On islands and in coastal regions the minimum height is reduced as wind flows are usually much higher and sufficient for PowerNEST minimum conditions.
39. Is there a maximum height?
There is no limit to the height to place PowerNEST on the roof. For new construction, the tower crane used for the building construction can be used to lift PowerNEST on the roof. For existing buildings, a mobile crane is the best option which nowadays can go up to even 192m. Points of attention are the module weight and the reachability and distance to the roof. As cranes get more expensive by height and they need to have enough placement and workspace, helicopter placement is also a viable option for the highest buildings.
40. I already installed solar panels on my roof, Can I still place PowerNEST?
Yes, you can. The solar panels placed on your roof can be easily adopted into the PowerNEST structure for better and more efficient performance.