As an entry for the Land Art Generator Initiative Competition 2012 – Freshkill Park New York, ‘Wind Fountain’ is based on an adaptation of the piezoelectric effect – a well known property of certain materials to produce electrical power when they undergo strain and stress. Designed by Gembong Reksa Kawula, the project is shaped as an artificial tree, with each unit consist of 450 flexible thread 30 meters high made of carbon fiber reinforced resin pole that will sway in the wind. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Vibrations can create enough stress and strain on piezoelectric crystals to generate electric current. Based on recent breakthroughs in nanotechnology, new, low – cost, micro-sized crystals can now be assembled to create more efficient piezoelectric materials. The interior of each independently flexible Thread are covered with corresponding piezoelectric transducer, which is a device made of a ceramic or polymer that emits electrons when stressed.
In other words As the wind moves the flexible thread it will create a synchronously bend in the downstream of the air wake, it causes bending stresses on the corresponding piezoelectric polymer that effectively absorb and convert the kinetic energy of the moving air to electrical power which are wired together into electrical regulation circuits that generate power with a high wind to power conversion efficiency.
Although The power production output for the Wind Fountain flexible thread still need to be researched. To increase the annual power production in the future, if desired, The Wind Fountain can house a VAWT or HAWT at it’s axis for future use. Based on the Freshkill Wind Resources of the American Built Clipper Liberty 2.5 MW turbine which estimated to produce 6.116 MWh/year. It will act as a hybrid power source for a sustainable future.
The arrangement of the Wind Fountain unit is spread through the site along the river line, the arrangements will give the effect of an artificially fantasy like forest welcoming visitors to enjoy the scenery and wildlife. The wind fountain will cast shadow during daytime providing shade for visitors, the wind fountain each thread is embedded matrix of LEDs will be illuminated with small amount of power generated from the wind fountain, this embedded LED will glow during night time, as it glows, each visitors will experience a fantasy themed landscape. The lowest part of the wind fountain the visitors of the park can interact with the embedded fiber optic which are computer controlled. It will react to the visitors movement and touch, visitors will obtain unprecedented experience during their visit to the wind fountain.
Architects: Gembong Reksa Kawula
Location: Freshkills Park, New York City, New York, United States
Estimated Power: 6.116 MWh/year/ unit with VAWT / HAWT (approx + – 6000 houses / year / unit)
Technologies Incorporated: HYBRID Kinetic
Site Area: 2,200 acres
Status: Competition entry