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Posted on on May 18th, 2010
by Pincas Jawetz (

As said previously, we will write up a series of postings from what we saw in Idaho that has National and Global relevance to the reduction on dependence on the use of GHG emitting fossil fuels.

We start here with the added visit, to the added last day of the trip, in the spirit of last in – last out. In effect, we found the following as the most practical highlight among the technologies we saw that are being groomed with the help of the Idaho National Laboratory.

If we want change in our energy life why not start with these Blackhawk windmills?

In the case we describe here we are in plain policy agreement with the presenters of the technology, and hope to be able to get among our readers also some that will think of investing with the company that owns the patents to the technology.

What we are talking here about is the use of Blackhawk helicopter technology blades and tilt rotor technology, wind operated, in order to produce electricity with a device that could fit on a roof-top if that is what we desire. These windmills, operating close to horizontal, rather then the conventional vertical turns, do not need an outside starting engine – so they are quite independent of other inputs, and react faster to smaller wind speeds.

The beauty of these small non-conventional wind mills is that they can be as small as needed to supply electricity to a single home, or larger and connected to the grid – so they can replace the need of peaking plants or reduce the pressure on the grid in general.

Literally, the Blackhawk Project involves tilting windmills from a horizontal to a vertical axis, which will result in greater energy production and added durability.

“As the wind hits its airfoils, the VAWT/AR’s rotor articulates (tilts) in response to the wind. The tilt of the rotor controls the pitch of the airfoils, changing the angle of attack relative to the wind while the fixed cant of the airfoils produces a vertical thrust vector. With its three airfoils changing angles at the same time, it self-starts and rotates until it finds its sweet spot relative

to the wind and speeds up. Its tilt and fixed cant self-correct gyroscopic precession for maximum tip speed. Meanwhile, its generator maximizes energy output by changing load to enable highest efficiency rpm, leveraging increased wind speeds up to 100+ mph into higher energy production while its tilt design self-limits destructive runaway turbine speeds.”

A simple mechanical device that integrates motion in three dimensions, performing complex physical functions quietly and efficiently.

These researchers are not tilting at windmills, they are tilting  the turbines!
The researchers at The Center for Advanced Energy Studies (CAES) that was established under the leadership of the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) with participation from the three local universities, were not tilting at windmills, they are tilting just the turbines! See also –

the Blackhawk Project LLC used a new Blackhawk Tilt Rotor (TR-10) Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT)  installed at CAES. This wind system, developed by Blackhawk, represents what could be a significant evolution in wind energy technology.”

“Blackhawk’s unique design distinguishes it from traditional wind energy systems. The most obvious distinction is that its helicopter-like wings, known as airfoils, rotate parallel to the ground, unlike most commercial turbines.”

  • It can produce electricity in winds as light as 7 mph. Propeller-type windmills typically require speeds of 12 to 15 mph.
  • Energy generated is about 1.5 kilowatts (per windmill) – enough to supplement the needs of a single-family home, or power a workshop.
  • The entire turbine can fit in the back of a pickup.  Even better, it will take only about 3 hours to install – perfect for a DIY project!
  • The TR-10 has only a 10-foot diameter, which is perfectly sized for the small wind turbine market in rural and semi-rural areas
  • Engineering of the Blackhawk wind turbine allows “on-the-fly” automatic adjustment to wind speeds, allowing it to function in sustained winds of over 100 mph
  • Operation of the vertical windmill is virtually silent, addressing one of the often-stated concerns about small wind turbines
  • If it is so wished, the system can be increased in size or several windmills used in parallel.

The windmill was shown to us by Bruce Boatner, the Lead Electric Engineer and inventor of the device,,  BoatnerConsulting at, Ms. Dawn Marie Cardwell, the Project Manager – – dmarie@BlackhawkWind, and Mr. Pat Large  plarge at who was involved in the buildong of the patented unit.

Following our visit we received  from Mr. Russell Case  (RC business + Law) –  rc at the following: “At the request of Dawn Marie Cardwell, Project Manager, I am sending you the summary presentation describing the Blackhawk vertical axis wind turbine with articulating rotor.  You may find the first appendix particularly interesting, as it describes the reasons why Mr. Boatner invented the Blackhawk turbine and the history of its development.  The actual patent is included as a separate exhibit.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Mr. Boatner, Ms. Cardwell, Mr. Large or me.  We all thank you for spending time with us on Friday learning about this unique wind technology.”

Thus attached, in order to increase interest in the Blackhawk windmill, please find a link to the above file that includes the patent –

and my honest hope is to see these windmills used as front runners for changing this insanity that made us dependent on oil, and when trying to get away from this dependence pushed us to large centralized systems, rather then allowing for free style decentralization.  Decentralization can provide energy for the needed refrigeration system in the middle of nowhere, without telling the planners that they must pull wires to link to a grid. Blackhawk can provide answers even to such systems, while also be used to work with grids when there is opportunity to cut off peak needs, that in most cases just lead to extra capacity, that remains unused most of the time.

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One Response to “Blackhawk Small Tilted Windmills – a great product of the Idaho National Laboratory Ready for Commercialization. (this is our 3rd article from the Idaho series)”

  1. htomfields Says:

    Here’s a feature story from the lab with video about the project.….

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