Here is the dilemma:

  1. France announced that they had a car that would run off of compressed air and that they were going to have Taxis running off of compressed air at some future date.
  2. Every time someone talks about alternative fuel there is always a lot of batteries for storage involved, which I find somewhat of a drawback.
  3.  Gasoline, LPG or Diesel generators deliver direct current to a home without having to utilize batteries.

Taking 1, 2, and 3 into account…
Why can’t you use the windmill to generate the air for compressed air to utilize with a generator to provide electricity directly without the use of batteries.  If compressed air will operate a car then why wouldn’t it operate a generator for a home?

There are a lot of windmills in that corner of the state. It was an NSP show of force in the “alternative energy scene”. But their heart was not in it. I wrote them once and they never responded.

I believe they got a government grant for part of the funding, but I’m not absolutely sure about this. It is a very small installation compared to what could be, but it is at least there as an example. Northern States Power changed its name to Excel Energy recently.

You could check them out on the web under one of these names I suppose. I’ve never seen the windmills myself, but have seen pictures of them. I guess these are the windmills you are talking about anyhow.

Storage of energy as compressed air is possible, but inefficient. It might pay for some applications, especially cars where the energy storage density (kWh/kg) of a high pressure, filament-wound pressure vessel could be an order of magnitude higher than for the best storage batteries, at lower cost. Hydraulic storage has also been tried – the windmill driving a hydraulic pump that charges an “accumulator” consisting of a vertical cylinder and piston weighted with scrap iron or bricks.