Three students have created a microturbine able to harness the rainwater runoff from roofs to generate electricity.
The Pluvia system, as it is called, features a microturbine measuring about 2 inches wide by 10 inches high designed to be placed in half-inch pipe. As the turbine is spun by the flowing water from rooftop gutters, it generates enough energy to charge 12-volt batteries that can be used to power small household devices.
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As an added benefit, the water flowing through the turbine is also sent through a charcoal filter and into a storage tank, purifying the water to a level “equal to or cleaner than the water in the network supply system of Mexico City.” The team is currently working on ways to increase the energy output of the system.