TRL 9 AWES
- DOE Tehnology Readiness Level 9 refers to- "Actual application of technology is in its final form - Technology proven through successful operations."Obviously all COTS is by definition TRL 9, so we can say that standard kites, lines, anchors, winches, generators, and so forth, as applied to AWES engineering, is TRL 9. Kite traction sports are TRL 9, in "final form" that has held for a decade or so. There are many interesting COTS niches; giant show kites, ropeways, hot gliders on tethers, etc. COTS content is a AWES TRL jumpstart, for example, one might tow an ordinary glider and pilot behind a stable vehicle, with a dynometered tether, and assess sweeping fight dynamics and measure power harvesting. Such experiments are very fast and cheap compared to custom prototyping.A sufficiently elegant all-COTS AWES starts as quasi TRL 9, and only needs to clearly show "successful operations". A new generation of tarpkites are close to TRL 9, as are AWES based on lifting conventional small HAWTs with a tarpsail multikite. Many small AWES are close to TRL 9. PierreB, Doug, DanT, me, and several others have shown simple successfully operating small-scale devices that are likely not quite "final form", but damn close. As a novelty device, the flipkite mated to a flea-market rip-cord charger (that Util is marketing) is TRL 9.2012 is thus the small beginnings of a flood of TRL 9 AWES, starting with small novelties, personal utility products, and ultimately megascale utility power. The Golden Age of Kite Power has in fact begun, if TRL 9 is defined as the starting line.