Floating power point

Man prepares to launch Magenn MARS
This idea might take off

We make it a rule never to feature next generation products on this site, but to wait until they are actually on the market. The new floating wind turbine from Magenn deserves to be an exception. It is highly likely to move from prototype to production in 2008, and you need to know about this beauty now if you are currently evaluating your off-grid land, and wondering what you will do for power in three years time.

It floats using helium tanks, and is tethered to the ground by a 1,000 foot power cable, catching the steady winds which prevail at that height. It was featured in the New York Times this week, because the inventors, Magenn Power of Ottawa Canada, have had $5m from a Californian investor to build prototypes, and received a Patent last month.

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Traditional wind turbines can be unreliable sources of energy because, well, the wind blows where it will, says The Times. Not the case 1,000 feet up.

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