Quantcast

Continent's Tallest Approved Structure to Produce Solar-Wind Energy Hybrid at U.S.-Mexican Border

Business

The tallest structure in North America will be constructed at the U.S.-Mexico border, and guess what—it will generate two types of renewable energy.

Annapolis, MD-based Solar Wind Energy is planning on building a $1.5 billion Solar Wind Downdraft Tower near the border. Aside from its plans to make the tower about 800 feet taller than the Chicago building once known as the Sears Tower, the company says the structure will be the energy market's first-ever technology to blend wind and solar energy.

"It’s capable of operating around the clock, 24 hours per day, and seven days per week," the company's website explains. "Whereas there are operational limitations with solar collectors that work only when the sun shines, and with wind turbines that work only when the wind blows.

"It also has the ability to be operated with virtually no carbon footprint, fuel consumption, or waste production. It generates clean, cost effective and efficient electrical power without damaging effects." 

The City of San Luis, AZ approved the company's construction that will span more than 600 acres in the city, according to the Phoenix Business Journal. Solar Wind Energy settled on San Luis after evaluating several cities for about two and a half years. Its first project, the tower's construction will begin in 2018.

“The San Luis site was selected, in part, by utilizing our recently announced proprietary software which can accurately calculate and predict energy production 24/7 given local weather data,” CEO Ron Pickett said. “By feeding the weather data into the program, the outcome dictates the optimum size of the tower’s dimensions as well as its financial performance. "As a result, Solar Wind Energy deemed this location as prime for a tower project.”

This rendering from a company video provides an idea of what the Solar Wind Downdraft Tower might look like when it is constructed in the coming years. Video screenshot: Solar Wind Energy Tower

The tower would be capable of producing an average 435 megawatt hours in a year, Pickett told Bloombergbut that amount could triple during July and August. The company plans on licensing the process to developers who could deploy it in other areas like Africa, Australia or “you can throw a dart in the Mideast, and it works there,” he said.

“This is a game-changer in certain areas—hot, dry climates,” Pickett said.

Here's a brief description from Solar Wind Energy on how it works:

"A series of pumps deliver water to the Tower’s injection system at the top where a fine mist is cast across the entire opening. The water introduced by the injection system then evaporates and is absorbed by hot dry air which has been heated by the solar rays of the sun. As a result, the air becomes cooler, denser and heavier than the outside warmer air, and falls through the cylinder at speeds up to and in excess of 50 mph. This air is then diverted into wind tunnels surrounding the base of the Tower where turbines inside the tunnels power generators to produce electricity.

——–

YOU ALSO MIGHT LIKE

——– 

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

By Brian Barth

Late fall, after the last crops have been harvested, is a time to rest and reflect on the successes and challenges of the gardening year. But for those whose need to putter around in the garden doesn't end when cold weather comes, there's surely a few lingering chores. Get them done now and you'll be ahead of the game in spring.

Read More Show Less
(L) 3D graphical representation of a spherical-shaped, measles virus particle that is studded with glycoprotein tubercles.
(R) The measles virus pictured under a microscope. PHIL / CDC

The Pacific Island nation of Samoa declared a state of emergency this week, closed all of its schools and limited the number of public gatherings allowed after a measles outbreak has swept across the country of just 200,000 people, according to Reuters.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
(L) Selma Three Stone Engagement Ring. (R) The Greener Diamond Farm Project. MiaDonna

By Bailey Hopp

If you had to choose a diamond for your engagement ring from below or above the ground, which would you pick … and why would you pick it? This is the main question consumers are facing when picking out their diamond engagement ring today. With a dramatic increase in demand for conflict-free lab-grown diamonds, the diamond industry is shifting right before our eyes.

Read More Show Less
Austin Nuñez is Chairman of the Tohono O'odham Nation, which joined with the Hopi and Pascua Yaqui Tribes to fight a proposed open-pit copper mine on sacred sites in Arizona. Mamta Popat

By Alison Cagle

Rising above the Arizona desert, the Santa Rita Mountains cradle 10,000 years of Indigenous history. The Tohono O'odham Nation, Pascua Yaqui Tribe, and Hopi Tribe, among numerous other tribes, have worshipped, foraged, hunted and laid their ancestors to rest in the mountains for generations.

Read More Show Less
The Navajo Nation has suffered from limited freshwater resources as a result of climate, insufficient infrastructure, and contamination. They collaborated with NASA to develop the Drought Severity Evaluation Tool. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Native Americans are disproportionately without access to clean water, according to a new report, "Closing the Water Access Gap in the United States: A National Action Plan," to be released this afternoon, which shows that more than two million Americans do not have access to access to running water, indoor plumbing or wastewater services.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Wild Exmoor ponies graze on a meadow in the Czech Republic. rapier / iStock / Getty Images Plus

By Nanticha Ocharoenchai

In the Czech Republic, horses have become the knights in shining armor. A study published in the Journal for Nature Conservation suggests that returning feral horses to grasslands in Podyjí National Park could help boost the numbers of several threatened butterfly species.

Read More Show Less

Despite huge strides in improving the lives of children since 1989, many of the world's poorest are being left behind, the United Nations children's fund UNICEF warned Monday.

Read More Show Less
At least seven people have died in a Bangladesh pipeline explosion. Youtube screenshot

At least seven people were killed when a gas pipeline exploded in Bangladesh Sunday, and another 25 were injured, the Associated Press reported.

Read More Show Less