Velkess, a startup run by Bill Gray, uses fiberglass on a lightweight frame to prove his cheaper kinetic energy recovery system can work in something like a renewable home installation.
When you think about clean, renewable, energy for the home, four things likely come to mind, solar panels, wind turbines, or hydroelectric turbines.
The fourth is the problem, because lack of rain can shut down a hydroelectric turbine, lack of wind makes wind turbines useless, and at night, the sun doesn’t shine. Renewable energy intermittence means that you’ll still have to count on some other source of power when the renewables fail.
The solution, of course, is energy storage, but these can be expensive. Rechargeable battery packs may seem like the obvious choice, but lifespan and expense will always remain a sticking point for anyone considering the technology.
Kinetic energy is another good prospect, but current technology is comprised of heavy steel flywheels operating in a vacuum. In order to keep the flywheels from destroying their enclosures, they need to be machined and balanced to extremely tight tolerances, which keeps costs high.
Velkess, a startup run by Bill Gray, uses fiberglass on a lightweight frame. The 50-odd prototypes have proven to be stable and flexible but, more importantly, less expensive than their solid-steel counterparts. In order to scale up the project, though, Gray needs to built a 750lb prototype to prove his cheaper kinetic energy recovery system can work in something like a renewable home installation, and for that, of course, he needs funding that he can’t supply himself. Check him out here on Kickstarter: