It’s easy enough to monitor home power consumption, but few people think about the energy impact of talking on cell phones for hours on end. After all, cell towers have to be powered by something, and in many cases that something is coal or other expensive on-the-grid sources. Enter Helix Wind Corporation, a wind turbine company that is aiming to both cut down on cell phone tower operating costs and lower the CO2 impact of cell phone use with wind-powered cell towers.
Helix’s vertical turbines are ideal for powering cell towers and are both elegant and unobtrusive. Not only are they quiet, but they generate enough juice to pay for themselves in six months. That means it isn’t too much of a stretch for telecom companies to invest in them.
Trials of Helix’s wind-powered cell towers will begin in the US and Africa by November, with initial turbine shipments expected to arrive in Nigeria for local telecom company Eltek NSG by the end of October. If all goes well, Helix hopes to expand to other operators in the area and collaborate on hundreds of tower sites in the next few years.
Helix isn’t the only wind company to experiment with cell phones. Ericsson is also working on a design that incorporates vertical turbines into a radio communications tower.
Via Design Boom