A NEW FRONTIER — Kean Stimm talked to Springville Area Chamber of Commerce members and Springville-Griffith Institute High School students about his new wind turbines. Photos by Jessie Owen.
SPRINGVILLE — Springville Area Chamber of Commerce members joined Springville-Griffith Institute high school juniors and seniors in listening to Kean Stimm of Kean Wind Turbines Inc. present what he called a “major engineering breakthrough” in the field of green energy.
S-GI High School Principal Vince Vanderlip spoke to the assembly before Stimm took the podium in conjunction with the SACC’s monthly meeting, on Oct. 25.
“This [event] is one of our key initiatives, to get you more involved in the community,” he said, to the students. “We want to let you know what’s going on and that there are jobs here. We want you to be able to live and work here and see the opportunities presented to Springville.”
Stimm, a scientist and the president of Kean Wind Turbines, said that he came to Springville with “an educational opportunity.
“I have nothing to sell. I’m here to inform you about what’s going on, in your community,” he said. “It’s amazing for Western New York and for all of us. I’ve developed a new wind turbine, new technology that is an engineering breakthrough.”
The company calls itself an American benefit corporation, which Stimm said means that it is publicly owned by its shareholders.
“It’s financed by 500 Western New York shareholders. No one investor can own more than 200 shares. This is very unusual,” Stimm said. “As founder, I have the controlling interest but, upon my demise, the shareholders will own the company. We do not want to be a burden on the community. We want to contribute to the community.”
LISTENING INTENTLY — Springville-Griffith Institute junior and senior students joined Springville Area Chamber of Commerce members in listening to Kean Stimm’s presentation.
Stimm called his wind turbine the “Newtonian wind turbine” because it operates on Sir Isaac Newton’s first law of linear motion, as opposed to the three-blade windmills that are the current producers of wind power, which operate using bernoulis theorem.
The wind turbines utilize 100 percent of the displaced air mass presented to the face of the turbine, as opposed to windmills, which use only 4 percent of that air mass. Stimm explained that his turbines convert 40 percent of the kinetic energy from the wind to useful electricity, while the current windmills utilize approximately 1 percent of that energy.
“With the wind turbines, the air is forced out of its path of motion,” Stimm said. “The blades slow down the air from the exterior by 30 percent, but the cowling outside expands the volume inside by 30 percent, so the air is the same speed in as it is out. There’s no turbulence.”
He added that his wind turbines present increased efficiency, over the current windmills, since the lack of turbulence means there can be five of them on a rotating pedestal and they will not interfere with one another.
“They can be mounted on commercial buildings with little structural modification,” he said. “That’s not possible with the three-blade windmills.”
The turbines are projected to be produced in three sizes, according to Stimm: 3 meters, 4 meters and 8 meters, producing 10 megawatt hours, 25 MWH and 100 MWH per year, respectively. According to Stimm, the turbines can be placed in the backyards of homes, agricultural farms, urban open spaces and industrial sites, in addition to roofs.
“It can operate in hurricane-force winds,” he said, explaining that turbines can utilize a wider swath of wind speeds than windmills can. The turbines can also produce power for less than 1 cent per kilowatt hour and, because the turbines can be perfected where the power is used, there are no transportation costs.
“It is truly the world’s most effective method of taking the power out of the wind,” Stimm said. “There is more energy in the river of air [that the turbines utilize] than going over Niagara Falls. There is energy blowing over our heads, all the time. Finally, we have the method to harness it at a low cost, with no noise and no bird kills.”
Stimm published the international patent for Kean wind turbines in December 2010. The inventor said that Western New York has more patents per capita than any other city in the world.
“This location is ideal for creative thinking,” he said. “We have all the opportunities here.”
Kean Wind Turbines Inc. will create a flagship plant to be permanently located in Western New York as a “demonstration showcase facility to potential, worldwide manufacturing licenses,” according to literature produced by the company. Stimm explained that licensed manufacturing plants located around the world would then pay royalties that would be directed back to Western New York.
“I want Western New York to be the capital of wind turbine production,” Stimm said. “By 2015, there will be 1,400,00 turbines, one for every 4,000 acres.” He said there would also be franchise opportunities for business owners who would like to contribute to the production of the product. In addition, Stimm said that his factories would be profitable enough to be able to pay good wages and allow employees to buy into the product.
“That’s why small businesses often can’t afford to operate in New York; the costs are too great,” he said. “We can be profitable. We are exhausting fossil fuels all over the world and fracking costs 10 times [what wind power costs]. The costs are so low, [tax abatements and] write-offs are unnecessary. I feel that the government can’t afford to keep supporting these programs.”
As for the current wind farms, Stimm said that he thought that they were too expensive, take up too much space and operate inefficiently.
“They will become dinosaurs,” he said. “We are the future of renewable energy.”
For more information, visit www.keanwindturbines.com.