FLAG Project History #10

A project log for Flexible circuit wind generator

A new way to generate wind energy using only polyester film based flexible circuits

Stuart MacKenzieStuart MacKenzie 10/14/2021 at 07:040 Comments

I have been discussing FLAGs with companies that may be able to produce them with improved manufacturing using conductive-inks and other flexible printed circuit technology.  I am looking forward to seeing FLAGs that have the somewhat natural appearance of leaves, or multi-cell, multi-layer designs, with higher oscillating frequency, and fully encapsulated designs to increase the power output.

One of the greatest advantages of the FLAG is that this type of design is extremely lightweight.  Even the converter circuits required do not use heavy coils and magnets. Time permitting, I would like to make the first flying FLAG kite...!  It will be interesting to see how far the idea can be pushed. 

I am also experimenting with circuits that will efficiently convert this type of high-voltage-low-current output, to more useful low-voltage-high-current output.  Traditional coil transformers do not work well in this application.  The type of circuit needed was recently invented and demonstrated at high efficiency (Fractal Switched Capacitor Converter), and an attempt to make a similar converter circuit for the FLAG is in progress:

I do not really have the right measurement equipment to properly size the components of this circuit, so I am using the highly advanced method of trial and error.  It is not immediately obvious from the Fractal Converter paper (which was developed for a different type of generator with similar output characteristics), but it requires a switch to trigger the circuit at the right moment of the FLAGs motion.  I have had some mild success but it is not yet working as well as I would like, and I would prefer to come up with a design that is entirely solid state.