Wind turbines in buildings – Is venturi the answer?

I’m a big fan of treehugger for digging out new technologies, social movements and a general bit of tree hugging. And then working out how some of the ideas could be integrated into the built environment.

How about this one – Sheerwind  a new wind power start up from Minnesota have come up with a way of accelerating the background wind before it enters the turbine. The quadrupling of wind speed creates an 85% smaller turbine size for the same power generation.


The Invelox system funnels the air into venturi which then accelerates the wind into the turbine before it exits the funnel.

So the interesting bit is could this be applied to a building? Could the Invelox be on top of a high ride residential or office building, with the turbine at a low or mid point of the building with a reverse Invelox behind the turbine such that the air is sucked out by the wind pressures of the building itself?

Wind turbines on the top of buildings have been shown to not perform as intended, but could this be a better alternative? Could the Invelox generate more power in our already built up urban environments rather than putting wind turbines in our pristine natural habitats? Could the Invelox solve the problem of turbluence of wind which is bad for horizontal axis turbines?

One to keep an eye on I think.

6 Comments on “Wind turbines in buildings – Is venturi the answer?”

  1. Hi Simon
    This is the theory we applied on Richard Johnson square (unbuilt) where the shape of the openings in the blades focused and increased the velocity of the air before it hit the turbines. Worked in theory but we never got to see it work in reality.

    • Indeed mate. And the physical model we built at the time showed it would work. As you said it is a shame that the actual building didn’t get built. We need to try it again…

  2. Cool post! I did not know about this method of wind power harvesting. Seems like many existing buildings could be retrofitted with approximately the same devices for not a whole lot of investment.

    • Thanks for the comment. The down fall of wind turbines near buildings has been the turbulent nature of the wind as it flows around buildings. This alternative wind turbine could solve that. But it does need a large space at roof level or mid level. So retrofitting is possible but you would loose a lot of floor space.

      • Hello. For other viewpoints of this Invelox, please go to my own wind turbine website and see the About Invelox page. I believe that, unfortunately, you were just caught in a media scam by running the article about Sheerwind’s Invelox. In my opinion, this man offers nothing more than an ineffective wind tube, not anything resembling an entire wind turbine system. Where’s the beef? For example, my own recently patented design puts the funnels and generators where they belong, together, on top of buildings…not on or in the ground! Another look at Invelox’s outlandish claims would be nice, but I haven’t seen one yet by the many internet magazines which have in my opinion foolishly carried this man’s false claims. Where’s the indignity?

  3. Pingback: 10,000 hits and top 10 posts « SIMON WILD

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