Southwest Windpower, maker of the small-wind turbine Skystream, just announced a refreshed Whisper line of turbines for battery-charging applications including off-grid residential homes. The Whisper 100 (7′ diameter) has the potential to generate up to 100 kWh per month at 12 mph; the Whisper 200 (9′ diameter) has the potential to generate up to 200 kWh per month at 12 mph; and the Whisper 500 (15′ diameter) has the potential to generate up to 538 kWh per month at 12 mph.
This is yet another “Must-See” product and the People’s Choice winner at KBIS 2012. Called U-Socket, the AC wall outlet has two USB 3.0-compatible power ports and can be installed on a 16 cubic inch or larger single gang electrical box, according to Fastmac, the manufacturer. The listed product meets UL and NEC specifications and carries a 5-star energy-efficient design. The USA-made outlet has a smart sensor that recognizes when a device is charged and shuts down, cutting back on vampire energy.
California-based Sunrun and Harris Interactive recently announced the results of a survey of 2,211 adults (1,475 homeowners) about the cost and desirability of installing a home solar system. The main sound bite is the one-liner that “97% of Americans overestimate the cost of going solar,” as well as the stat that “nearly 8 out of 10 of those who do not already have solar panels say they would install solar if cost were not a factor.”