Idea Of Wind Power On Mars Could Work, A New Study Suggest

Wind Power On Mars

A new theory by researchers of Boston University’s Center for Space Physics suggests that having Wind Power On Mars could be feasible.

A few years ago, Researchers performed an experiment in which a small, lightweight wind turbine was simulated in Martian atmospheric conditions. They performed this experiment at the Aarhus Wind Tunnel Simulator II at Aarhus University in Denmark in fall 2010.

Last Week, the Whole team reported their follow-up research study in a paper presented at the Mars Workshop on Amazonian and Present Day Climate held at Lakewood, Colorado.

In the report, they wrote that “For now, we can say for the first time and with certainty, that, YES, you can use wind power on Mars!”.

Wind Power On Mars

Wind Power On Mars
The Aarhus Wind Tunnel Simulator II at Aarhus University in Denmark. Left: The wind turbine positioned in the wind tunnel, which is 6.5 feet (2 meters) wide. Right: Close-up of the wind turbine, with the wind tunnel fan visible in the background.
Credit: C. Holstein-Rathlou, P.E. Thomas, J. Merrison, J.J. Iversen

Researcher’s motive was to study that how much power a turbine can produce under realistic Martian atmospheric conditions.

Holstein-Rathlou and her colleagues noted that standard power sources like Solar Cells wouldn’t work in future in robotic missions on the polar regions of Mars. As solar cells would have limited or their will no sunlight for roughly half of the year on Mars. The heat expelled by radioisotope thermoelectric generator or similar devices will be harm to an experiment in a polar region of Mars.

Therefore, an alternative power source can be a wind turbine and battery for storing produced electricity. Researchers said it can be used in combination with solar cells.

How Far We Are From Producing Wind Power On Mars

Wind Power On Mars
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona

This concept of producing Wind Power on Mars has been explored theoretically in connection with a mission of human’s residence on Mars.  A 100 KW wind turbine was tested in Antarctica ( general analog to Mars site ) by the researchers

According to Holstein-Rathlou and her colleagues, these concepts were large and would require subsequent wind speeds for running perfectly.

In 2010 wind-tunnel experiments were run at six different wind speeds based. These wind speeds were based on the common wind speeds of the NASA’s Phoenix Mars lander’s landing site. Wind speeds on Mars are approx. 4.5 mph to 22mph or 7 to 35 km/h ) and for each wind speed output was measured for 30-120 seconds.

“The optimal locations for this type of power production are areas where the sun doesn’t always shine, but winds will blow, such as latitudes poleward of the polar circles,” the researchers wrote.

As seeing the current situations team is stressed as many studies are needed to be performed before launching turbine based power generator. However, designed and the system would more efficient than of 2010 experiments’.