Wind Powered Rotating Skyscraper
Residents of Dubai may one day experience a unique and constantly changing skyline thanks to Dynamic Architecture‘s wind powered rotating skyscraper. The main idea behind their concept involves a central concrete core surrounded by 59 independently rotating levels. The skyscraper would generate its own electricity from the massive horizontal wind turbines that would be stacked in between each floor. This idea may seem outlandish or impossibly expensive, but the oil price boom in Dubai has already funded many other similarly massive and complex architectural projects. If oil prices continue to increase these rotating wonders may be seen on Dubai’s horizon within the next few years.
The rotating towers are the vision of Dr. David Fisher, an accomplished Italian Architect focused on designing “Dynamic Architecture” or “Designing buildings that can adjust themselves to the needs of its inhabitants.” Fisher has been involved in building restoration projects in New York and is currently working to develop revolutionary construction technologies. Fisher’s designs are built in the factory and assembled on site, significantly reducing the construction time and number of workers.
The first phase of construction will take about six months. A central concrete core is erected to house important static amenities like elevators, staircases, plumbing and other utilities. This is the only part of the project which must be built on site. The 12 individual units that make up each floor are prefabricated in a factory in order to ensure safety, cost effectiveness and quality control. Each unit is self-contained and includes all necessary electrical, plumbing and air-conditioning. Units are hooked on to the building and hoisted up to the top of the tower. It takes one week to rotate the entire floor into (watch the construction animation). The tower is effectively built from the top-down. The fact that each unit is independent and moves with the wind ensures a much higher resistance to earthquakes.
Self Powered Architecture
Neatly stacked in between each floor is a horizontal wind turbine (58 in total). Each turbine can produce 0.3 megawatt of electricity and is said to be able to produce enough energy for 50 families. The turbines are integrated in such a way that they are hardly visible from the outside. Their close proximity makes them easy to maintain. “Producing that much electric energy without any implication on the aesthetic aspect of the building is a revolutionary step in tapping alternative energy sources.” Dynamic Architecture’s website also claims that combined with solar panels they could generate up to $7million worth of surplus electricity every year.
Each turbine can produce 0.3 megawatt of electricity, compared to 1-1.5 megawatt generated by a normal vertical turbine (windmill). Considering that Dubai gets 4,000 wind hours annually, the turbines incorporated into the building can generate 1,200,000 kilowatt-hour of energy. As average annual power consumption of a family is estimated to be 24,000 kilowatt-hours, each turbine can supply energy for about 50 families. The Dynamic Architecture tower in Dubai will be having 200 apartments and hence four turbines can take care of their energy needs. The surplus clean energy produced by the remaining 44 turbines can light up the neighborhood of the building. However, taking into consideration that the average wind speed in Dubai is of only 16 km/h the architects may need to double the number of turbines to light up the building to eight. Still there will be 40 free turbines, good enough to supply power for five skyscrapers of the same size.
There is no construction date. We’ve listed a few links and forums topics here for further research.