• Aug 10th 2011 at 6:01PM
  • 7
We doubt that charging your electric vehicles using solar will become passé any time soon, but when it does, at least we have options when comes to fossil fuel-free electrons. Urban Green Energy is teaming with General Electric to create charging stations that funnel power from the wind directly into your EV's batteries. They even have a clever name: the skypump.
The first Sanya Skypumps will be installed later this year in New York, Beijeng, and Barcelona, with an expansive rollout planned for 2012. The Skypump is based on the technology behind the Sanya Streetlamp wind power systems that are already deployed in several locations. Unlike the giant windmills used in most power production, these 13-meter (42-foot) structures are no taller than many light and power towers already dotting the suburban landscape. Each tower is topped by blades that drive a 4kW turbine as long as there is a minimum wind speed of 3.5 m/s (7 mph). Peak output comes at around 12 m/s (26 mph).

At the base of each Skypump is a GE WattStation Level 2 charging station. The combination of tower and station is designed to be easily assembled and to fit into both office and retail parking lots. The Sanya system is already used in some areas to provide wind-powered street lighting, and those towers can also be fitted with the WattStation to turn them into Skypumps.

If you're thinking that a Skypump might be a nice addition to your home, Urban Green Energy agrees. You can pair a wall-mounted GE WattStation with their UGE-4K wind turbine to make powering your vehicle a breeze. Sorry, there. Check out the full press release after the jump.
Show full PR text
Urban Green Energy and GE Energy Industrial Solutions Unveil the Sanya Skypump, an Electric-Vehicle Charging Station Equipped with Wind and Solar Power
Pilot installations to take place in New York, Beijing, and Barcelona this fall ahead of formal market launch in early 2012.

Urban Green Energy (UGE) and GE announced today the introduction of the Sanya Skypump, an Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station that will bring together the technology of GE's WattStation™ and UGE's Sanya hybrid wind/solar streetlamp. The Skypump will enable owners of electric vehicles to charge their cars from a renewable energy source, gaining certainty from the often-uncertain origin of grid power.

With the mainstreaming of electric vehicles, a major challenge to greater adoption has been the lack of an adequate charging infrastructure. The Skypump helps alleviate this concern by providing an easy-to-implement solution that can seamlessly fit alongside roads and in parking lots, including those already being fitted with Sanya street lights.

"Building upon the success of the GE WattStation™, GE continuously is seeking evolutionary EV solutions," said Michael Mahan, product general manager at GE Energy Industrial Solutions. "By marrying the elegant design of UGE's Sanya Streetlamp with the GE WattStation™, we have enabled the further adoption of electric vehicles by making access to renewable power easier."

"Our collaborative efforts with GE Energy have resulted in the breakthrough Sanya Skypump, which is powered by the energy available in both the wind and the sun," said Poul Heilmann, head of business development at UGE. "Consumers' concerns for a more environmentally friendly form of transportation include the source of power for the electric car. The Skypump uses a UGE-4K wind turbine along with solar panels to offset a significant amount of the usage of a commercial charging site," he continued. "We are thrilled to be partnering with GE Energy in bringing innovative and elegant design to enhance the adoption of renewable energy technology while minimizing the impact on the environment."

UGE will be installing the first units of the Sanya Skypump beginning this fall in New York, Beijing, and Barcelona with the planned worldwide roll-out in early 2012. The Skypump is designed with commercial users in mind, while residential users can use a combination of the UGE-4K wind turbine and the GE's wall mounted WattStation™ to ensure their electric vehicle is powered by green energy.

The wall mounted GE WattStation™ Electric Vehicle Charging Station is a fast-charging, easy-to-use solution for residential applications. It is designed for new home and garage construction and can be installed in the garage or outside, as well as retrofitted into existing homes. This Level 2 charger provides an end-to-end solution for consumer electric-vehicle users. It fully charges an electric vehicle in just four to eight hours, compared with standard overnight charging.

The UGE Sanya streetlamp, introduced in December 2010 and already installed around the world, enables municipalities and commercial customers to deliver needed lighting while disconnected from the grid. To complement Sanya, UGE recently introduced The Boardwalk, a lighting solution for parks and pathways. With the Sanya Skypump, UGE and GE have provided a product that allows for placement of charging stations in a variety of locations convenient to consumers' recharging needs.

About UGE
Urban Green Energy is a global leader in distributed wind energy systems, with installations spanning more than 50 countries. UGE designs, manufactures and markets cutting-edge vertical axis wind turbines as well as hybrid wind and solar street lamps with a track record of high performance, safety, and reliability. UGE-trained representatives can answers questions, supply UGE products, and provide post-sales support locally, no matter where our customers are located. Please visit http://www.urbangreenenergy.com to learn more about how Urban Green Energy can help you live a more sustainable life.

About GE
GE (NYSE: GE) is an advanced technology, services and finance company taking on the world's toughest challenges. Dedicated to innovation in energy, health, transportation and infrastructure, GE operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 300,000 people worldwide. For more information, visit the company's Web site at http://www.ge.com.

GE also serves the energy sector by providing technology and service solutions that are based on a commitment to quality and innovation. The company continues to invest in new technology solutions and grow through strategic acquisitions to strengthen its local presence and better serve customers around the world. The businesses that comprise GE Energy http://www.ge.com/energy - GE Power & Water, GE Energy Services and GE Oil & Gas - work together with more than 90,000 global employees and 2010 revenues of $38 billion, to provide integrated product and service solutions in all areas of the energy industry including coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear energy; renewable resources such as water, wind, solar and biogas; as well as other alternative fuels and new grid modernization technologies to meet 21st century energy needs.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Low noise VAWT tied to something as ubiquitous as the street lamp - a few of these in a residential community would be a good step towards reducing the neighbourhood's consumption. The idea of adding a charging station to the base is a nice touch - it could solve some problems for EV owners without garages that need a place to plug in where they park at home, be it streetside or in an apartment/condo complex's parking lot... places you'd ordinarily see a street lamp anyway.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm a fan of wind energy (bad pun intended) but I doubt these are worth the effort. Vertical axis turbines and small scale turbines are not very efficient . . . and this one has both strikes against it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Efficient compared to what? It is free energy minus manufacturing & maintenance cost. If energy amount is higher than those two combined it is good enough to be worth it. It really doesn't matter if the conversion ratio is weak, if the costs are low. Just like in solar panels where area doesn't cost much it is better to use cheap weak solar panels that require low maintenance than "more efficient" expensive ones that require high maintenance. This has several advantages over those ugly and noisy three-bladed ones, one huge one being that they are more silent than those three-bladed ones are, other than these are better for nature. And I like the look of those, they look more like artistic decorations than boring propellers.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I like the look of that wind turbine. It doesn't look as noisy as the usual three-bladed wind turbines and it doesn't look like it would spin very fast, which is good for birds. Though this is all just guesswork based on image. In here where I live that would be way better than solar, because for half a year when we would need the energy Sun would not be there to give it. However I really hate those big, ugly, noisy wind turbines every "green" person likes to see (as long as they are not build where they live). Smaller and quiet versions would be OK.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow! How cool is that?
      • 4 Years Ago
      The Sanya street lamp + 4 kW wind turbine + WattStation is a bit of a Frankenstein, and doesn't seem to exist except in photochops. Urban Green Energy's regular Sanya street lamp + 600W small wind turbine + small solar panel does exist. I guess UGE is hoping that by the time you've paid for the construction and disruption to install a charging station (or street lamp), you "might as well" add on a wind turbine despite the extra $$$$. The UGE-4K wind turbine is real, $17,461 to generate 4 kW in a 26 mph wind. If the wind in your area blew much of the time near that speed the cost seems comparable to a 4 kW solar PV array.
        Jim McL
        • 4 Years Ago
        I think you are right. 4kw (over 5 hp) seems like a lot, and could be problematic in urban areas if there are ice storms like we get in NC. Although I suppose it is easy enough to lock it down automatically when conditions are freezing. Still for the size and location your 600 watt unit (less than one hp) seems much more plausible. I will believe the wind turbine when I see it for sale, which I hope is soon. However the GE EVSE is out there now, I have used one at the GE factory near me in Mebane. They have several up now, but only available during business hours in the visitors lot just off I40. Only 32 amps, sigh. Enough for me but my neighbor has a Tesla that an drink at 75 amps. Thirsty little car, that one.
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