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Project Description


Problem Statement:

Southwest Windpower needs a reliable, marketable, and cost effective method of transferring power from the AIR-X wind turbine to an electric water pump.

High Level System Diagram:

Requirements and Specifications:

  1. Mechanical
  • Size: The new circuitry should fit in the pre-existing space in the AIR-X turbine where the current circuitry is located.
    • Specification: .5” x 2” x 3” in size
  • Weight: The weight of the new circuitry is not of much concern.
    • Specification: 1 pound
  • Organization: The organization of the board should be optimized to allow for adequate testing and troubleshooting.
  • Package: The new circuitry will be enclosed in the body of the AIR-X turbine, no other packaging will be necessary.
  • Protection: The circuitry will be protected from the elements within the body of the AIR-X turbine, and must resist 20kHz vibrations.


  1. Electrical
  • Power: The turbine has an alternator that outputs three-phase power.  The requirement is to rectify the output of the alternator to drive the water pump directly.
  • Accuracy:  Signal level values will need to be held to tight tolerances. The power circuitry will not need to be held to such tight tolerances for the system to function properly.  The power circuitry will need to be optimized to increase the system’s efficiency.
  • Values: The AIR-X turbine is rated for 400 watts.  Along with rectifying the three-phase power to drive the pump, we will rectify a 5 volt VCC to power any components requiring 5 volts DC.
    • Specification:  Max 150 watts DC delivered to water pump
  • Interconnect: The input to the board will be the three-phase output of the turbine’s alternator, and the output of the board will connect to a positive placement, DC water pump.
  • Reliability: The water pumping system should require no maintenance for extended periods of time, and should be completely self-sufficient.
  • Aging: We will need to choose components for this circuitry as to optimize its expected life usage.