The calculations are being made by a European team of researchers. They have taken a viaduct in the Canary Islands as a reference. With their data, they believe that it would be possible in heavy population areas or in natural areas with construction limits. The viaduct in Gran Canaria is a reference for both Spanish and British researchers. They want to verify that the wind that blows between the structure of the viaduct is the kind that can blow wind turbines to produce energy.
Oscar Soto of Kingston University in London, plus his colleagues, set up the models and computer simulations. The model’s wind turbines are porous disks. This helps to simulate air resistance and can make it so they can easily test different configurations.
Soto says, “As natural, the more surface is swiped by the rotor, the more power can be produced; however, it was seen that in small turbines the power rate per square meter is higher.” With this discovery, it helped him to find that the configurations with two identical turbines would be the best. They should also be medium sized.
The results came in and it confirmed that the viaducts have the wind energy possibilities that the team hoped. The viaduct they studied could help wind turbines produce up to 25 Megawatts per turbine. With two turbines, that would be 5 megawatts. This classifies the turbines as medium-power range.
This is equivalent to powering 450-500 homes with average consumption. As well, they would help to avoid 140 tons of Carbon Dioxide each year. The carbon dioxide avoided is the amount 7,000 trees would absorb.
The team has received help from the Canarian company, ZECSA. From the Vigo University in the Canary Islands, they have received help analyzing and making connections that are needed for this project. Researchers from the Las Palmas de Gran Canaria University were in charge of the integration of the scope of renewable energy.