- How much power does a PowerNEST generate?
- Where can I order a PowerNEST?
- What if there is no wind?
- What if there is no sun?
- Many small wind mills have proven inefficient in the urban environment, why would PowerNEST be different?
- Does PowerNEST make noise or does it have acoustic annoyance?
- Does it cause vibrations, and will I feel or hear noices?
- How heavy is a PowerNEST?
- What is the impact on the existing roof? Will an existing roof will be able to support it without additional structure?
- What is the cost of a PowerNEST?
- Does the efficiency reduce over its life time?
- How does it connect to the existing electrical system? Converter? Inverter?
- What data does it provide?
- What maintenance or installation needs are required?
- Is it safe, what happens in a storm, any how can I secure it?
- 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 is the effect of the PowerNEST on the roof membrane?
- What is active 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?
1. How much power does a PowerNEST generate?
The total amount PowerNEST generates depends on its location, orientation, building height, and surrounding obstacles. These are the basic conditions on how we can predict the energy potential of your building. The solar energy is easier to predict than wind energy. We developed an advanced prediction software to estimate the power potential on buildings, and if desired, can even place a wind meter to measure the local wind conditions or run a simulation.
2. Where can I order a PowerNEST?
PowerNEST can be ordered HERE. If you live outside the Netherlands, we will bring you directy in touch with one of our partners abroad.
3. What if there is no wind?
If there is no wind, there is usually sun. That’s why it is so good to combine wind and solar in a single solution. On a day and year scale the wind evens out with the sun, so PowerNEST provides you an almost continues power level of production. This is also very beneficial for battery life and required capacity if you need one. Even though you don’t feel wind at the street level, usually there is still a substantial amount of wind on your roof.
4. What if there is no sun?
If there is no sun, there is usually wind. Sun only shines during the day time and more in the summer than the winter. In most climates, the sun evens out very well with the wind. In residential buildings we use most energy in the morning and evening and winter less while there is least sun at these times. For this reason, it makes more sense to combine wind with solar energy in a single solution. This is also very beneficial for battery life and required capacity if you need one. Nevertheless, when it is cloudy your solar panels will still generate energy.
5. Many small wind mills have to be proven 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, wind has the tendency to blow far over the roof where the installed wind turbine will be placed in the wake of the wind flow. This significantly influences the total 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 input. PowerNEST is especially designed to overcome these issues as it smartly captures the facade interacting wind flow and accelerates it towards the internally centralised turbine. Measurements have shown that the turbine already starts producing energy at 2 m/s (7 km/hr) 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 efficient due to higher wind speeds, more optimal due to lower turbulence impact, and with more operational hours, making it especially effective in the urban environment.
6. Does PowerNEST make noise or does it have acoustic annoyance?
The turbine we use is rated for 37dB at 10 m/s wind velocity at 2-meter distance. This is a whisper in the storm. In the Netherlands this means that it is allowed to be used in residential areas. As it is located on top of your roof, the turbine always has a larger distance than 2 meters. Measurement have been carried out by external parties and reports are available on request.
7. Does it cause vibrations, and will I feel or hear noises?
The turbine is the only mechanical part of PowerNEST. It is designed to be placed on a 8-meter pole and is therefore engineered for minimum vibrations. 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 have been carried out by external parties and reports are available on request.
8. How heavy is a PowerNEST?
The standard size of PowerNEST is 7,2×10,8m existing of a steel structure with aluminium and composite parts. The combination of these materials makes the weight of the unit 8500kg at a total surface of 78m2; ±110kg/m2. This is called the dead weight of the installation. For construction planning, we can share you a load scheme.
9. What is the impact on the existing roof? Will an existing roof will be able to support it without additional structure?
PowerNEST is designed to not load the roof slab, but finds it support only on the main structural elements. This way it can be added on any flat roof where it will be anchored waterproof through the roof layer into the structure. Furthermore, a research performed by Eindhoven University of Technology on 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 load.
10. What is the cost of a PowerNEST?
The cost of PowerNEST depends on the size, number of modules and location of the installation which we can supply on request [click here]. A 3 year product warranty is included with a 75% warranty on our predicted energy potential. In addition, we offer a maintenance plan to guarantee life long best performance.
11. Does the efficiency reduce over its life time?
PowerNEST is delivered with a best-value-for-money technology today available based on upfront and life time cost, quality, safety, suppliers reliability, and efficiency. Turbine (parts) must be replaced after 15 years, solar panels after 20 years, while the structure lasts 50 years. The efficiency of the solar panels reduce over time. 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.
12. 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 buildings 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.
13. What data does it provide?
We log all the data to determine the efficiency at any tie 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. In the future we will develop an app.
14. What maintenance or installation needs are required?
The PowerNEST is delivered with a maintenance plan to secure the performance and life-time of the unit. All maintenance activities can be executed without any extra structures like scaffolding, which makes it low in cost and highly efficient. 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.
15. Is it safe, what happens in a storm, any how 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. The turbine is equipped with an electrical and mechanical safety systems to prevent any damage to the turbine and unit itself. The brakes will be activated under high wind speeds (20 m/s) with by an integrated measurement system. The PowerNEST is safe in all weather conditions and has already withstand the 50 year extreme storm 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.
16. Who do I call if it breaks?
We always work with a local maintenance company who is trained to perform maintenance. Our technology is sealed and we suggest strongly to not use any other company then who we suggest. We will monitor your installation during the first three years continuously, and will continue doing so if you take a maintenance plan with us. Even when you do not know something is wrong, we have already send our maintenance team to fix it.
17. Who do I call if it does makes noise for any reason?
If for the unlikely reason that it occurs that something happens which may cause an annoyance or bother which is enough reason to stop the turbines working, we ca shut it down from distance with one click on the button. We try to avoid this as much as we can as we like the turbine spinning better than sleeping. In the event that a big storm is predicted, we also shut down the turbines from distance as an extra safety caution.
18. What happens if the air conditioning unit is under the solar roof?
Placing an air conditioning unit under PowerNEST has a positive effect on the cooling efficiency of the air conditioning installation as it is covered from 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 to these installations. On average the air conditioning efficiency should improve approximately 10% on an annual basis [patent pending].
19. What is the effect of the PowerNEST on the roof membrane?
As PowerNEST covers the full roof, it keeps away the UV radiation from the sun whereas the roof membrane will age much less during its life time. In addition, most damages exist during summer time when it is a hot day and all of the sudden a thunder or hail storm comes in dropping the roof temperature dramatically in a very short time. This causes an aged roof membrane to crack resulting in leakages. PowerNEST avoids this type of damages as it evens out these fast temperature drops, and is expected to extend the roof membranes life time with at least 10 years.
20. What is active panel cooling?
PowerNEST is designed to control the 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 to create a wind cooling mechanism increasing the panel efficiency. The efficiency of panels drops during hot days (depending on the panel type). PowerNEST partly solves this and is designed to increase the annual output of the solar panels with 10% to 15% [patent pending]; depending on the local climate conditions.
21. 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 hot summer nights with not too much sleep. PowerNEST puts the top roof layer in the shade reducing the heat penetration dramatically. On average, the cooling load of the top floor will reduce by 38% by placing a PowerNEST on top.
22. 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 the extra load.
23. How does the PowerNEST work on an island?
Islands usually have a lot of wind as the wind flows are only 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 sun, which adds to the total power potential making it a very attractive investment opportunity.
24. How about corrosion?
PowerNEST is designed and protected for corrosive environments like at the coast by double galvanized protection with coatings. Other parts are made of aluminum consisting of corrosion safe alloys and composite parts.
25. Is PowerNEST safe for hurricanes or typhoons?
PowerNEST still needs to undergo the testing requirements of hurricanes and typhoons. Academics have already studied PowerNEST and concluded it is not a great 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 Japanese safety regulations.
26. Can I go off the grid with PowerNEST?
Going of the grid depends on your energy demand in relation to the power potential PowerNEST can generate. In addition, peak times need to be taken into consideration to ensure all the building uses to 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 energy down times. Our team can look into your case investigating at the local possibilities to go off-grid and design a system accordingly.
27. 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 wind mill farms. The technologies have a different scale of economy and purpose and are therefore not comparable. One will never place a large wind mill in the city, and it doesn’t make sense to place a PowerNEST on a large wind mill 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. The operation and maintenance are also not given, but are known to be complex and expensive in ocean location and at great height.
PowerNEST has a wind interaction area of 7,2×4,8m (34,6 m2) which is 426 times smaller than the wind mill 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 wind mill while the cost are in a range of 140 to 180 times smaller.
Altogether, it is impossible to compare the two technologies. PowerNEST provides decentralized energy on top of your building feeding your buildings energy demand directly and providing the possibility of independency of the grid, while wind mills are a centralized power solution which making you dependent on the common energy politics and extra grid costs. In addition, wind mills do not offer the extra benefits of PowerNEST like reduced building cooling demand, extension of roof membrane life time, and the architectural attractive addition on your roof.
28. 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 installation, estimated returns, use of energy, power connections and type of building. As soon as you have recognized a project we will look together what the available subsidies are to make the sustainability transformation of your building even more financially attractive.