by Michael dEstries
Categories: People, Transport.

Popular Mechanics and Jay Leno have been working together on a project to take Jay’s car garage and turn it into a model of sustainability. We covered Jay’s ownership of some of the first electric cars last month and now we’re happy to report that a vertical wind turbine will shortly be joining the solar panels on the roof of his garage.  From the article,

[The Turbine] can produce 10 kw at around 28 mph and has a cut-in wind speed of 6 mph. These turbines don’t need a braking mechanism and can self-start at very low wind speeds—something similar designs in the past could never do. They take up very little space, they’re virtually silent, and multiple units can be placed within feet of one another. Delta II units can also be stacked vertically up to 50 kW.”

Vertical wind turbines are a sort of “Holy Grail” for wind energy because they tend to alleviate some of the environmental concerns associated with large scale blade turbines. While Jay’s turbine is still considered small, the design is holding promise for commercial farms. The 500-watt unit Pacwind dropped by his garage with costs just under $3K. For his 17,000-sq-ft. garage, however, a more powerful 10kw version called the Delta II will most likely do the job. This unit comes in at $20K — but with the proper rebates will most likely fall closer to $12K. Granted, Jay’s probably not too concerned with counting pennies. 

You can take a look at Jay’s progress on his green garage by visiting the Popular Mechanics site here. Of course, we’ll keep you updated on the latest as it zooms into our laps.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

View all posts by Michael dEstries →
  • Frances

    I didn’t even know these things existed. Just like Jay Leno to use the latest new technology. I was very much taken by the cabinet he uses to clean dirty parts using nothing but water and vibration. No toxic compounds, very clean.

    Mr. Leno, I hope you get to enjoy your garage for decades to come!

    An automotive fan [although using somewhat more modest means to express my appreciation for cars]

  • http://thingsimgratefulfor.blogspot.com Solomon Broad

    Perhaps such high profile people as Jay Leno having this technology will inspire others to look into it.

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  • http://N/A Andy Allenberg

    I am so happy that people are taking advantage of what Nature offers to us. I have always advocated the use of natural materials, such as water and wind. I live on a mountain and if I wasn`t so poor, I could construct such a vertical wind turbine. I think that this is absolutely fantastic.

  • Keith A. Heikkinen

    Not so great, but a lot of hype. I made a special stop in to see the good PacWind folks in LA and inquired about buying a number of these for a LEED project my company is doing in San Francisco. Have e-mailed, left messages and never hear back from them since myself and the VP of our company visited. Seems all you hear about is the one Jay Leno VWT and that Ed Begley likes them. Otherwise, seems there is little beyond that and they don’t seem interested in selling any. Not sure I understand why.

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  • Windy

    Caution folks… 28 MPH winds… are they happening most of the time? some of the time? How much wind is at this site? Ask if they are certified to be grid tied? no brake? and how do you stop it, in the event of a problem or maintainance?

  • Uncle B

    The end of cheap oil is here, and the end of oil is near! Getting OPEC to come clean about honestly measured reserves is a hard task for sure. We can’t wait for them to tell us when they are down to the last few shipments, and the Obama boys best get on it before it is too late. Personal Windmills may soon be the only way to boil water for tea in the U.S. as we are far too slow in developing Wind and solar on big enough scale to compensate for the coming end of oil. We cannot afford to go nuclear, we need this limited supply resource for Strategic military uses first. We have already dipped deep into the world’s supply of fuel for reactors and must realize that it is finite and soon to end also. Solar, Wind, Wave, Tidal, Hydro and Geothermal are the infinite, perpertual, renewable sustainable power sources we have access to right now in practical useable form. We pray for fusio, Zero-point electric, and various perpetual motion devices but we don’t have them in our hands, and must concentrate on developing current day realities, or we can turn Iraq and Iran into glassy, radioactive parking lots for Hummers, and steal the oil there, and live with the guilt for a while? Like Hiroshema, it passes and is covered with the lies of historians, and is not of great consequence to a truly capitalist mind, just one more option we have in our hands.I like Wind better myself

  • http://www.verticalturbines.net/ David

    Interesting article. Actually, the first time I ever heard of vertical turbines was from Jay Leno. Good stuff!

  • Horizontal Wind Mill

    The reason you never heard of vertical wind mills is because they have lower efficiency than the horizontal ones. There is a lot of companies trying to get people to invest in crappy vertical wind mills. Stay away from them!