If you'd like to know just how a fan the size of the one in the image above (yes, those are humans walking under it) helps move wind around a giant rectangle at the GM Aero Lab, Frank Meinert is the guy you want to listen to. You can do so here:
Wind-power is proving a popular choice for automakers in their quest to curb costs and present an environmentally-aware public face. Nissan has eight turbines at its Sunderland plant, Toyota has one planned for its Flintshire, Wales factory and even Chrysler is investing in a wind project at its Chelsea Proving Grounds in Michigan.
Chrysler may be slow to the party in introducing production hybrids and electric vehicles, but that doesn't mean they haven't been working on cleaner energy. The company has been cooperating with university researchers on growing biofuel feed stocks on brownfield sites, for example. They have also been growing potential biofuel crops at their Chelsea, MI proving ground as an alternative to grass. The company's latest effort is a wind power project, also at the Chelsea track.
Just in time for the launch of a test fleet of battery-powered Smart ForTwos in the UK, Mercedes-Benz is adding some wind power. The Mercedes facility in Milton-Keynes has added a new wind-turbine that is specially designed for urban applications where space is at a premium. The 20 m tall turbine rotates on a vertical axis and can pick up wind power from any direction. The helically twisted blades are made of carbon fiber for low weight and vibration. The new turbine can generate enough juice to