Rendering of the product in use at a campsite by a lake.
Exploded view of the system and its sub assemblies.
SIROKOS assembly process and phases.
Powerbank handling and usage.
SIROKOS is a portable vertical wind turbine, capable of exploiting light winds to allow hikers and campers to charge useful electronic devices by harvesting green energy instead of linking to the main power grid.
La tua ispirazione
Being a team of nature enjoyers and both campers and hikers we always found it really hypocritical having to rely on power coming from uncertain sources whilst doing outdoor activities. This, coupled with the advancements in green energy harvesting pushed us to develop a solution that could offer both good performances and be lightweight and portable as much as possible. Whilst many green energy companies veered away from applications such as this, preferring way larger applications, we strongly believe that even smaller solutions can make a difference.
SIROKOS is based on the vertical wind turbine concept, allowing for lighter winds to be harvested and lesser wind speed to start up and begin producing energy. Its small size, coupled with a lightweight frame of aluminum helps to carry the whole disassembled object around with ease, even while on trails or hiking, allowing the user to unpack and set it up in a short timespan. Coupled with this optimized functionality comes a simple but intuitive interface to help the user understand when the device is correctly working, by means of a light halo placed around the battery casing. This, when lit, signals the user that the blades are spinning fast enough to generate energy. After analyzing behaviors and needs of hikers and travelers the object allows for two different power banks to be recharged alternatively, so whilst the user carries the first one around to keep his devices charged, the other charges in his dock.
Processo di progettazione
We started our design project by analyzing each of the main parts we would have needed and optimizing them as we progressed. When every component reached the quality and efficiency level we wanted to achieve, they were fused together and optimized again to work as a whole and express a common and recognizable language. First was the blades, our first prototype had “Savonius” type blades, allowing for even a breeze to be caught, but unable to produce enough torque to drive the generator we needed. We then chose to modify the blades to “Darrieus type H” and increase their number, thus producing way more torque at the expense of a need for slightly higher wind speed (about 10 km/h). We also chose to make the blades by bending a plastic sheet, making them fully disassemblable, almost weightless and taking close to no space into the packaging whilst retaining mechanical performance. We also developed the main generator casing and the upper and lower rotor parts to be 3D printable, with the structural parts connecting them being aluminum, for maximum lightness. Every element was then connected together by bolts and screws, allowing for the object to be fully disassembled for maintenance, operation and end of life disposal.
In che modo è differente?
SIROKOS is not only a product that can be sold by itself but a platform for makers and creators to experiment and implement upon, every part is easily obtainable from the market or can be made by 3D printing, also very limited machining is needed to fit the parts together and build the whole system. This approach makes the object very accessible for everyone, with inexperienced or uninterested users buying the whole preassembled package for the full price and readily enjoying their objects and creators or makers just buying the instructions for a small price and being able to implement and modify as they see fit. Most of the products that already exist do not offer such transversality, instead focusing mostly on performance and appealing to more target users. Using less high performance materials SIROKOS is also cheaper than most competitors, whose huge reliance on carbon fiber also means a worse environmental impact at end of life.
Progetti per il futuro
We are currently working on a fully functional 1:1 prototype for the whole system, having only built the blades - generator assembly for testing. This will help us refine even further the concept, improve efficiency and optimize the positioning of internal electronic components. The full scale prototype will be then thoroughly tested by taking it to camp with us, trying it out in its future scenario and verifying eventual ergonomic issues of the packaging we designed for it. We are also thinking about patenting the product, to be able to propose it to several companies focusing on ethical and environmentally friendly lifestyle products.
This is the first contest this technology is presented to.