The Solar-Wind Downdraft Tower is a 2,250 ft beast, taller than the equivalent of two Shards (1017ft) stacked on top of each other, will generate clean and cost effective electricity with “virtually no carbon footprint, fuel consumption, or waste production.”
US energy developer, Solar Wind Energy, has received backing for a giant tower in Arizona which will combine dry air, heated by the sun, with H20 to create a fierce natural downdraft wind with speeds of up to 50 miles. The Tower is constructed in concrete with 20 large turbines at its base, and is capable of 24/7 operation. The project cost are estimated to be around $1.5 billion with a operational target date of sometime in 2018.
US Infrastructure fund National Standard Finance has agreed a conditional agreement with Solar Wind to provide funding for the renewable energy equipment, power station and development costs. National Standard will then lease the equipment to Solar Wind Energy Tower for a 20 year term. The developer is looking to partner with developers, utilities and power producers across the world and intends to take the tower to Chile, India, and the Middle East.
A remote location in the Arizona desert will keep the Nimbys at bay – but the Tower needs 2.6 billion gallons of water per year to run, which in Arizona might be a bit of an ask.