It rises 143 meters above central London, making it the district’s tallest residential structure. Its nickname is ‘The Razor” owing to its sharp angular design. It’s also the first skyscraper to have electricity-generating wind turbines built into its core design “fabric”.
In a city not as suited for solar power, as say Phoenix , AZ, London is now starting to take advantage of one of its more plentiful, renewable resources: wind.
While there are other, much taller buildings with turbines added on following the finish of their primary construction, the Strata has included them in the architectural plan from the get-go. The threesome of integrated wind turbines, at full capacity, will generate 8% of the building’s energy needs. This may not seem like very much, but it amounts to several dozen mega (million) watt hours annually–saving the owners and residents a great deal of money (and freeing up extra capacity from traditional utilities).
Its official name is Strata SE1, and it’s the first “skyscraper” to integrate wind turbines into its original facade.
The 42 story, energy-producing building is hopefully representative of a not-too-distant-future trend in large-scale, urban structure design and development that will seek ways to self-provide power through harnessing renewable energy sources--as opposed to relentlessly draining energy resources.
The Strata is tall enough to take advantage of the nearly constant 40 mile an hour winds found at that height. What’s more, this unique building was also engineered to take advantage of what is known as the ‘Venturi Effect’, caused by the change in air-flow from nearby buildings (as more are built).
Named after Italian Physicist (1746-1822) Giovanni Battista Venturi, the ‘Venturi effect’ describes the inverse relationship between fluid (or air) flow speed and its pressure (flow speed increases as pressure decreases) as it is forced, or compressed, by a surrounding structure (such as in a pipe, or between two buildings).
The resulting increase in kinetic energy forces more wind power through the structure’s turbines.
It is estimated that the building will generate 50 MW (million watts) hours per year. For more info on ‘ The Razor” and its design, or more info on wind turbine construction, check out the inhabitat.com article.
photo: inhabitat.com, article by Mike Chino