Makani's first offshore energy kite flight

Published:  18 October, 2019

Makani flew its energy kite from a floating platform in the North Sea. Once commercialized, Makani’s kites have the potential to bring power to hundreds of millions of people living along the world’s coastlines where the wind is strong and steady, but the water is too deep to fix wind turbines to the ocean floor. Makani energy kites produce electricity by harnessing energy efficiently from the wind. We're developing energy kites that use a wing tethered to a ground station to efficiently harness energy from the wind, generating electricity at utility-scale. As the kite flies autonomously in loops, rotors on the wing spin as the wind moves through them, generating electricity that is sent down the tether to the grid. Eight rotors are spun by the wind in energy-generating crosswind flight. Each rotor drives a permanent magnet motor/generator that generates electricity onboard and sends it down the tether—eventually we'll connect from the tether to the grid. Wind energy has the potential to power the world 100 times over, yet only 4% of the world’s electricity comes from wind. The Makani energy kite system integrates advances in aerospace engineering, materials science, and autonomous controls to create a lightweight design that is easy to transport and install. This test was filmed at sea by Andrea Dunlap, Betsy Pfeiffer, Andrew Koch, Johnny Heineken, Stein Hanssen and Viktor Andreas Olsen. Edited by Andrea Dunlap. Music by Sound of Picture. #airbornewindenergy #energykite #renewables #renewableenergy

Sign up for the OEE newsletter

Last issue

View the latest issue here.

View the past issue archive here.

Media pack

View the OEE - Offshore Engineering & Equipment Media Pack and find contacts here.