Eiffel Tower Installs Wind Turbines

PARIS — The Eiffel Tower in Paris is going green with new wind turbines that will help produce electricity.
New York-based UGE International installed two on-site wind turbines at the Eiffel Tower as part of a renovation and upgrade to the first floor of the monument. Located above the second level for its wind conditions, the turbines are now producing 10,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity annually, equal to the power the Eiffel Tower’s first floor would typically use.
UGE designed the wind energy system to provide a clean source of energy at the Eiffel Tower, which is undergoing its first major facelift in 30 years. The two UGE VisionAIR5 wind turbines were painted to match the tower, which is being transformed through other efficiency upgrades.
The tower’s vertical axis wind turbines operate silently and are designed to capture wind from any direction. The location for the wind turbines, 400 feet above ground level, was strategically chosen to maximize energy production. Mounting the turbines at this location was itself a challenge and required each component to be hoisted and suspended with ropes to the tower’s second level.
"The Eiffel Tower is arguably the most renowned architectural icon in the world, and we are proud that our advanced technology was chosen as the tower commits to a more sustainable future," said Nick Blitterswyk, CEO of UGE, in a statement. "When visitors from around the world see the wind turbines, we get one step closer to a world powered by clean and reliable renewable energy."
Although there is no high quality environmental benchmark for the Eiffel Tower, one of the major goals of the facelift was to achieve a significant reduction in its ecological footprint as part of the City of Paris Climate Plan, which was adopted in 2007.
In addition to wind energy, the renovation to the tower also includes LED lighting and roof-mounted solar panels on a visitor pavilion. The solar panels will produce enough energy to meet approximately 50 percent of the water heating needs of the two pavilions. High-performance heat pumps have also been installed so that the tower can have a constantly balanced temperature. The two pavilions also have gained a rainwater recovery system that provides flushing water to the toilet facilities.
In addition to the Eiffel Tower, UGE has designed wind, solar and microgrid systems in more than 90 countries around the world for global brands such as Whole Foods, Hilton, Dropbox and Verizon.