Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Flag Generator

I had this idea as a way to generate some AC electricity. Basically as a flag ripples in the wind it is connected to a framework of springs that will tend to oscillate at their resonant frequency. This oscillation is converted to electricity by moving a magnet through a coil. The picture might help:
If you've ever held a flag in the wind you'll know that even a moderate breeze can get it jerking your arms pretty hard. Ideally you'd want to construct the flag so it ripples at the same frequency to a given wind speed that the spring's vibrate when you press and release one. In the picture above the magnet is connected to the bar that the flag is on I wasn't sure how to make that clearer. 

This is the first prototype. I'm ordering the wire for the electrical part and it's a little tough to see in the video because it was nighttime, but basically I've got a plastic streamer inducing a vibration in the springs that I'll try and capture the electricity from. The second part of the video I'm just showing how the springs thread onto the screws. 


  1. Ben,

    Great idea.

    I would also suggest to lay this on a disk that can spin the device in the direction of the wind (as the wind changes) with the help of a "wind rudder".


  2. Nice video. Really demonstrates the concept.