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How tall buildings could generate wind energy

A proposal to allow super-tall buildings to generate energy from high winds has been recognised for its contribution to future engineering.

City University London engineering lecturer Agathoklis Giaralis won a Bright Ideas Award from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

His proposal uses an inerter device enabled to harvest energy from the vibrations of a lightweight tuned mass damper mounted on a structure.

Tuned mass dampers are generally used to keep buildings stable in extreme conditions, while inerter devices are normally found in the suspension systems of high performance vehicles.

Giaralis’s proposal aims to allow slimmer, taller, more aesthetically-pleasing tall buildings to be constructed in congested urban environments.

He hopes it will allow commercial skyscrapers to provide more comfort to workers in office hours – and generate wind energy overnight.

Giaralis said: “There are considerable new technological research and development and commercialisation opportunities for the UK and international manufacturers of vibration suppression and energy harvesting equipment for civil and mechanical/automotive applications.

“It is hoped that my research will catalyse this process and I am grateful to the EPSRC for accepting my proposal and permitting me to research this exciting area of structural dynamics.”

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