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Alumni Spotlight: Habib Bahari '80

Alumni Spotlight: Habib Bahari '80

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Photo of a Wind TowerGiven the impact of our ever-changing climate, the demand for new renewable energy sources is growing every day. You’ve got a smartphone, smart voice assistant, even a smart TV. Now, Habib Bahari ’80, is working to bring an updated energy source to your home via smart wind technology.

Habib Bahari ’80 is the founder and CEO of Bahari Energy and recently partnered with NASA Goddard to make smart wind tower technology a reality. The project compacts the power of wind turbines into a tower. It can scale to provide energy for buildings from the size of a single family home to an entire power plant.

“We are passionate about bringing wind energy into urban areas, where the most energy is being used,” says Bahari.

Bahari originally developed the idea as a student at UMD where he studied aerospace engineering. The design is based on an old technology called a “wind catcher” from central Iran.

“The wind catcher has been used for 3,000 years in the desert as ventilation,” he explains. “I used the same technology and expanded it to actually generate electricity.”

The “smart” technology will have sensors that tell the components to engage or disengage to achieve the ideal amount of energy based on usage. In other words, it can sense how much energy is needed based on your usage and store any extra for later.

“By bringing smart wind energy to the hands of businesses and consumers,” Bahari explains, “you can reduce energy usage, save on costs and avoid complications from transporting wind energy from conventional bladed turbines.”

Currently, Bahari is working to install a full-size smart wind tower using NASA’s gear-bearing technology in the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. This will be the first full-size commercial working unit.

Eventually, he sees potential for smart wind energy to make it into homes. “When the energy is in your hands, nobody can take it from you,” he says. “It's going to be your technology that's producing energy for you.”

To learn more about Bahari Energy and its work with smart wind technology, click here.



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