Southwest Windpower

This Flagstaff, AZ based Southwest Windpower has been producing small wind turbines for the residential market since 1987. In 2000 they acquired the operations of World Power Technologies. Elliot Bayly, the former owner of World Power is now running his more recent upstart Ventera Energy. Southwest dropped the World Power name but began to improve on the newly acquired turbine line. The results are seen in the current Whisper 100, 200 and 500 models.


Southwest windpower Skystream 3.7 wind turbine

The Skystream 3.7 is a radical departure from the stock line of Whisper and Air series turbines. It’s a downwind turbine that is aimed at the residential grid connect market. By having the rectifying and inverting electronics neatly nestled in the nacelle, it looks like a fully packaged machine that could be called plug-n-play. The power that flows out of the turbine is household quality electricity. When the Skystream is producing power, you are either offsetting your current energy demand or feeding surplus back into the grid.

The Skystream has no aerodynamic or passive braking system. It solely relies on dynamic braking as the means to keep the rotor operating at a safe speed.

A Skystream is most suitable in a grid connect environment. Their output is either 120 or 240 volt AC. For this to work in a battery based system, it can be done but it is not as easy as one of the many other machines that are designed for battery systems. If you want to make this type of connection there will be extra expenses involved over a typical grid connect Skystream system.

Air X – Air Breeze

southwest windpower air x air breeze wind turbine

Southwest Windpower has been making the Air series micro turbines since 1994. In 1998 the Air 403 was introduced then upgraded in 2002 to the presently available, Air X. The company boosts of having produced approximately 18,000 Air series turbines. The Air Breeze is the latest addition the the product line.

The energy output of the Air X is listed as 400 watts in a 28 mph wind while the Air Breeze is less than half the output at 160 watts. Interestingly the specs show them to have roughly the same monthly energy output.

The Air X and Air Breeze turbines have an on-board microprocessor-based regulator with peak power tracking. The Air Industrial is a similar product but requires an external charge controller.

The Air turbines make use of dynamic braking to limit rotor rpm. This is referred to as electronic torque control where the regulator loads the alternator to create an electromechanical braking effect much the same as the Skystream.

Whisper 100 / 200 / 500

Until recently the low-cost Whisper 100 and 200 turbines have only had serious competition from the Bergey XL.1. Though the African AWP 3.6 was close in price, it was considerably heavier and larger, requiring a more expensive tower than a Whisper. 

The Whisper 100/200/500 turbines are available in the standard 12 through 48 volt configuration. The standard voltage from the factory is typically set to 24 volts but a 12, 36 or 48 volt setting can be easily made by the end user (12 volt not available on the 500). The charge controller will also require a slight modification. A high voltage model is available for long distance transmission.

All 3 turbines are similar in design and operation. The have a radial flux PMA and rotor governing is controlled by side furling. While the 100/200 have a 3 blade rotor, the 500 is a 2 blade design. They are readily available and the 100 or 200 is easy to ship due to the light weight.

A 5 year warranty comes with all Whisper products.

Whisper 500

southwest windpower 500 wind turbine

Whisper 100/200

southwest windpower whisper 100 / 200 wind turbine

soutwest windpower wind turbine spec chart
photos Courtesy of DOE/NREL, Credit – Southwest Windpower

What Other Visitors Have Said

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page…

Dieter Hoefner Not rated yet
I have a whisper 500 for over 14 years.(I run it on 12 Volts DC) I really like it and it does a good job for me.I also have some solar panels. My problem …

Owner of a Whisper 500 Not rated yet
I have sent my Whisper 500 back to the manufacturer for warranty work. I live in Belize Central America on an island named Caye Caullker. After 4 years …

Two Skystream Installations Gone Wrong  Not rated yet
After having purchased two of Southwest Windpower’s Skystream 3.7 wind turbines at a cost of $30,000, we tell of our experience at out website: http://b-d.ranch.tripod.c …

Two Skystream Installations Gone Wrong  Not rated yet
After having purchased two of Southwest Windpower’s Skystream 3.7 wind turbines at a cost of $30,000, we tell of our experience at out website: http://b-d.ranch.tripod.c …

$15,000 Buzzard Roost Not rated yet
Visit this website to see a video about our $15,000 Buzzard Roost: Also, please visit …

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