LOCKPORT – A Williamsville engineer, who said he’s invented a new type of wind turbine that beats the usual three-blade windmill in every way, tried to drum up interest from the City of Lockport’s economic development agency Thursday.
Kean W. Stimm told the Greater Lockport Development Corp. that his “Newtonian wind turbine” is smaller, quieter and puts out more power than conventional windmills.
Stimm said he envisions a 75,000-square-foot plant employing 75 people to produce the turbines.
R. Charles Bell, city director of planning and development, said, “At this point, there’s no request [for assistance] to the GLDC. There may be something down the road.”
Stimm has visited other local municipalities to promote his idea in the past couple of years. He said his prototype has been tested in a wind tunnel at Calspan in Cheektowaga and performed well.
Stimm claimed that his aluminum turbine, 10 feet in diameter, is 50 times more efficient and turns out 60 percent more power than a three-blade windmill 80 feet in diameter.
He said one of his 10-foot turbines could produce 12.5 megawatts of electricity a year, enough to power an average home. A 12.5-foot model would be able to power and heat that home with its 14-megawatt output, and his 25-foot design could produce 100 megawatts of electricity, enough for industrial or commercial customers. “It’s very small. It’s very quiet,” Stimm said. “You can put it on the roofs of buildings.” He also said the design won’t kill birds, which sometimes happens in the spinning blades of windmills.