There is no shortage of green energy generation ideas lately, and while some have very little merit and usefulness, others, like the brain child of engineer Louis Michaud, bring an very interesting twist. Michaud’s idea is to make and contain a twister to harvest its energy with wind turbines. At first glance, the idea seems doubtful at best, but upon further inspection, his concept is quite brilliant.
Michaud plans to harness the waste heat from a power plant and push that heated air into a round room at an angle to create a swirling air current. Then, because the air temperature above is cooler, the spinning tunnel of hot air would naturally rise and dissipate. Once circulating at over 200 mph, a vacuum is formed which holds the vortex together allowing it to extend into the sky where temperatures of -60°F can be found. This massive temperature differential is what perpetuates the spinning of tornadoes and hurricanes, as the lower warmer air is drawn up into the sky, massive amounts of outside air is drawn into the vortex creating the powerful spinning effect.
The energy in Michaud’s system comes from the air rushing into the bottom of the man-made tornado. With electricity generating wind turbines strategically placed at the lower inlets, as much as 200 megawatts of electricity can be generated without draining the twister of its power. 200 MW is enough energy to power a small city and at a price of only $60 Million to construct, this would be the cheapest form of power generation to date.