Wind vs. Solar Panels for portable power

Solar Panels are great. They’re good for the environment, they’re compact and they have low maintenance costs. What’s more, all they need is sunlight! Or do they…

As everyone knows, there are many advantages to solar panels (especially if you wanted to power your home) but they also have lots of disadvantages, especially if you want a reliable source of portable power. This is where wind turbines come into their own. New developments in the production of wind turbines have made them more efficient and more transportable making them the closest contemporaries to portable solar panels and, in our opinion, far more effective.

SOLAR vs WIND

The Weather…

A common assumption is that all solar panels need to work is sunlight. And, this is a common misconception. They actually require direct sunlight to achieve peak efficiency, which occurs at an optimum angle. Easy, just put the solar panel at this angle, right? Not when this angle is constantly changing, even within the span of 15 minutes. This means that it is almost always impossible to achieve peak charging rates when out on a trip. Additionally, there is also a time where charging is almost impossible during the day due to atmospheric interference. In the summer, this period is only around 4-6 hours long during the ‘solar noon’ which is not a long time, especially at peak daylight hours are when most of us will want to be having adventures, not sitting around waiting for devices to charge.

So – there are only 4-6 hours when the solar panel can charge devices, what happens when it’s not sunny during this time? The solar panel is rendered useless. Wind turbines are the solution. The wind blows, pretty much all of the time, through all weather conditions, plus, if the turbine itself is in motion, the turbine blades will be spinning. This especially benefits boat owners who can charge while cruising on the water. Newer turbine designs are also able to turn into the wind, getting the full amount of power from the environment than solar panel materials.

Manufacturing…

Solar panels are great for the environment, that’s another tick, but, only once they’ve been made. The materials involved are rarely recyclable and often, toxic chemicals are created as a byproduct of the manufacturing process, including silicon tetrachloride. If this product comes into contact with the environment it can cause respiratory problems and can release hydrochloric acid in water. Most companies do handle these toxins responsibly but it stands to reason that solar panels are not as green as they’re made out to be.

Again, wind turbines offer a solution. Turbines usually use metals which are far more easily recyclable and can easily be sustainably sourced. Some turbines do use carbon fibre which is not as green as other materials but is still less harmful to the environment than solar panel materials.

Our Solution…

The GIGA turbines are the newest competitors to the renewable energy market and a revolutionary generator design makes them the most efficient turbine available. Coupled with this increased efficiency and the benefits of wind over solar power, the GIGA turbines is the best solution for all your charging needs.

Putting this into numbers, our 12V wind turbine, which generates 30W at 2.5A, will output the same amount of power over a whole year as an 80-100W solar panel. This is because the turbine will still generate electricity without sunlight, even during the night, as long as the wind is blowing. A GIGA turbine offers a better solution to many current wind turbines on the market and will always spin at a lower wind speed since the motor doesn’t have any resistance to overcome.

GIGA uses materials that are all recyclable and are also sourced sustainably using local companies (wherever possible). This makes the GIGA turbine a truly green solution to charging devices and batteries. We also use no glues or resins during production, relying on marine grade steel bolts which will neither rust nor corrode.

Whether you need the power to trickle charge your boat battery over the winter or power to charge your device, GIGA has you covered.

Conclusion

We believe renewable power is essential for humanity. Recent reports (and protests) on climate change have bought into sharp focus the need for us all to use renewable sources of energy, so, for that reason, we would never say chose wind over solar for every scenario, both have their merits. However, for individuals who want a reliable source of portable power, wind, will be best. What’s more the variety of uses for GIGA Turbines, might surprise you.