Air Breeze: A Teeny Tiny Turbine for Off-Grid Power

airbreeze mini wind turbine photo
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Southwest Windpower has rolled out a new, small wind turbine to help out generating renewable energy on a small, more personal scale. The Air Breeze, successor to Air-X, is for off-grid locations such as ships, rural cabins and even RVs.

It sounds like a great invention, but with most small-scale wind turbines, we have to wonder where's the catch. Two of the issues with small scale wind power are noise and efficiency at lower air speeds. Several companies have been working on this issue, from The Energy Ball to noise-negating devices for turbines.

The Air Breeze is touted as quieter than comparable turbines, and can provide power at speeds as low as 6 mph. When the wind kicks up, the Air Breeze can generate 200 watts at 28 mph wind speeds. Not too bad for energy generation.

Stick it up on a pole while on land, or mount on a boat while at sea. Easy, right?

Here’s where the problem comes in: at $599-$699 for a model, it isn’t going to send generator-toting folks running to renewable energy in a heartbeat. However, with high gas prices on the one hand and the eventually free resource of wind available on the other, it is definitely an appealing option for vacationers.

The Air Breeze has another appealing element - it can link up with solar PV arrays to supplement renewable energy.

So it could be a very nice back-up for someone who already uses alternative power sources.