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Love Field Airport harnessing wind gusts from planes to make energy

 The JetWind Power pod at Love Field airport is a caged box with three small windmills that can power an electric vehicle using wind gusts from airplanes.
Courtesy
/
Love Field/JetWind Power
The JetWind Power pod at Love Field airport can power an electric vehicle using wind gusts from airplanes.

Love Field airport is at the forefront of a new technology that makes use of wind gusts from airplanes by converting them into energy.

The city-run airport is partnering with renewable tech startup JetWind Power Corporation to test out the program.

“It’s gratifying to see Dallas Love Field leading the aviation sector’s charge to decarbonize travel through our collaboration with JetWind Power Corporation," said Patrick Carreno, interim Director of Aviation at Love Field.

Carreno said Love Field is the only airport in the world that's testing the benefits of the technology, which supplements the airport's efforts to reduce its carbon footprint.

"Not only is this a win for the community and just to highlight what we're doing sustainably at the airport," said Isaac Ellison, interim environmental manager for the city of Dallas' airport system, "but it kind of also goes hand in hand with our efforts there."

The way the tech works is three wind turbines sit in a cage-like pod next to the control tower at the airport, explained T.O. Souryal, founder of JetWind Power.

"The aircraft creates wind, the pod is strategically located and within the pod are three wind turbines, and turbines generate electricity, which is stored in a battery trailer that is safely away from the pod," Souryal said.

He said a fully charged battery can power one electric car — and the airport's air traffic controllers have been making good use of that. People with electric vehicles can charge their cars with the energy generated by the pod.

So far the tech is still in its early prototype phase, but the airport said in a news release that it's seeing positive results since the current program began a few months ago. Souryal said the purpose of the test program is to see how the pod holds up to to weather conditions like hail and rain.

"The point is, we need to get more efficient and we need to see exactly how it's going to respond to the elements for long term use," he said.

Souryal said once its past the prototype phase, his goal is to bring the technology to other airports.

"I'm hoping that in the future as our turbines become more efficient and as we are able to capture a little bit more electricity that this this concept could be adopted in every airport and the world," Souryal said.

Got a tip? Email Pablo Arauz Peña at parauzpena@kera.org

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Pablo Arauz Peña is the Growth and Infrastructure Reporter for KERA News.