The overall aim of the project is to design, demonstrate and prove a generic wind pump design capable of being sized with rotors ranging from 1.5m up to 4m diameter. This machine is to be suitable for economic small volume manufacture and deployment both in the European Community and in developing countries and the end product will be a design package based on the R&D.
The initial R&D phase is complete and there is extensive test data which confirms that we have successfully arrived at an advanced windpump design with exceptional light wind performance, that is aimed specifically at profitable small volume manufacture in the light industrial sector. It also includes unique features aimed at acheiving high levels of durability and reliability and at making the system easy to install and maintain. Little or no maintenance is needed, other than the occasional inspection to check for any potential problems such as loose fastenings or corrosion.
The work programme involves the following principal activities:
1) Technical review aimed at assessing and appraising the state of the art and identifying/confirming promising design approaches.
2) Specification development based on market and technical economic factors already researched.
3) Transmission/Drive-train optimization: review and selection of optimum mechanism for use in the final design.
4) Design: a prototype with a 3m diameter rotor will be designed in detail using CAD to facilitate easy modification.
5) A first prototype will be built, tested and evaluated.
6) Two more prototypes will be built, incorporating lessons learnt from testing the first unit, and evaluated.
7) Various market research investigations will be undertaken and potential manufacturers will be contacted.
8) A design package to permit early production of the design will be completed.