Vortex Horizon 2020


H2020 Research & Innovation

Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever, with nearly €80 billion of funding available over 7 years (2014 to 2020). It promises more breakthroughs, discoveries and world-firsts by taking great ideas from the lab to the market. Vortex Bladeless SL has received this funding from the EU’s Horizon 2020 under grant agreement No 726776.

// Description of the project

VORTEX has developed an innovative wind turbine that would represent a break-through in the wind energy sector. This aero-generator is a new paradigm of harnessing wind, with a disruptive technology to generate energy from the wind without blades.


VORTEX is able to capture the wind kinetic energy thanks to the vortex shedding effect, and eventually transforming it into electricity. The technology seeks to optimize aerogenerator´s specifications as maintenance and operational requirements, amortization costs, noise, logistics, environmental impact and design whilst producing energy in a secure, clean and efficient way, and cheaper than current small wind turbines (SWT).


VORTEX produces an affordable and cheaper renewable energy for our end-users: private individuals, general public, households, wind energy cooperatives, energy services companies (ESCOs), manufactures and distributors, businesses, utilities, etc.


VORTEX will deploy a technology suitable to provide a reliable energy, stand-alone or combined with other RES, at several scales (domestic, commercial and utility), with a great impact in those areas where solar energy does not perform well.


VORTEX has yielded excellent results and has captured the industrial and commercial interest. We built a 6-meters wind turbine pilot prototype in Spain, which generates up to 40% of energy solely from wind. The technology is being scaled up from small devices to medium. Our goal for the Phase 2-SMEInst is to scale-up and test a prototype up to 2,75 meters and 100W power.


VORTEX would be eventually commercialize and massively produced. VORTEX will provide customers with excellent return on investment. Our main goal is to become the designer, manufacturer and seller of the first-ever bladeless wind generator for the small wind market (SWM).


Our technology is backed by a family of patents and by the significantly optimised specifications of the equipment (noise, aesthetics, wildlife impact) when compared to conventional wind turbines. One of our main thrust is the great interest aroused by VORTEX in the general public, local authorities, environmentalists, private investors, wind energy stakeholders, etc. We truly aim to significantly contribute to address EU 2020 energy targets, whilst positioning us as leaders of the sector.

// Objectives of the project

The aim is to scale-up, test and certify a prototype up to 2,75 meters capable of providing 100W of power. The objectives of the project has been defined from the three points of view. The successful commercialization of VORTEX depends on the fulfillment of all of them:


  • Technical optimisation of the system and construction.
  • Performance of the complete system and certification.
  • VORTEX commercialisation strategy.


Objective 1 // Scale-Up and technical Optimisation
  • 1.1. To constitute accurate software models for the generator movement under controlled wind conditions.
  • 1.2. To extend the model including scalability effects and turbulence.
  • 1.3. To optimise the mast aerodynamics, generator structure and materials.
  • 1.4. To optimise the electric equipment for the 100W VORTEX wind generator.
  • 1.5. Build 5 units of the optimised design.


Objective 2 // Assessment of Performance and Certification
  • 2.1. Successfully install the 5 demonstrators in the demo field.
  • 2.2. Certificate 100W VORTEX device.
  • 2.3. Life Cycle Analysis and Carbon Footprint to demonstrate the eco-viability of the product.


Objective 3 // Commercialisation Strategy and Final Business Innovation Plan (BIP)
  • 3.1. Verify all figures of the Business Innovation Plan.


Objective 4 // Communication, dissemination Activities
  • 4.1. Effective dissemination.
  • 4.2. Identify more sectorial events, fairs and congresses to announce our product and obtain stand offers.
  • 4.3. Engage current clients to visit the show-room plant during DEMO and give us feedback.
  • 4.4. Introduce VORTEX in the Wind Energy sector.

// Methodology of the project

VORTEX had developed a feasibility analysis prior to starting the development of the marketable product. A summary of the activities are included bellow.


  • Market assessment. We identified and quantified end-users and thus the market potential, paying special attention to market segmentation, especially in the segment target of the SWT, the domestic use in isolated-remote houses, and EU renewable energy policies.
  • Technological feasibility. An overview of international competing research and innovation development has been addressed. A clear roadmap of mechanical redesign and scaling up have been defined to better identify and quantify the resources needed for each WP.
  • Risk assessment. Technical and business risks have been identified and ranked according to severity.
  • Intellectual Property (IP) assessment.
  • Detailed work plan for a Phase 2 application. The tasks, deadlines and resources necessary have been defined as an output of the technological assessment, and the analysis of the current status of our prototype.
  • Business plan and other assessment. Cost, pricing, key stakeholders, revenues streams, etc, have been studied and defined. A business plan has been defined, including a commercialization strategy, KPI, and criteria for success.

Addressing EU-wide challenges

All the current energy plans policies and actions for a low carbon economy, such as SET Plan, EERA, IIEs5… among others, recognize the relevance of the deployment of improved renewable energy sources.


Gender balance

Vortex is compromised with the gender equality. We are ruled under  the Strategic Plan for Equal Opportunities 2014-2016 of the Government of the Kingdom of Spain that includes effective equality of gender. Point 7. “Increase the participation of women in the fields of science, technological development and research”.


In our recruitment procedures we strictly comply with the principle of equal treatment and non-discrimination, governed by the principle of equal opportunities according to the Spanish Strategy for Science, Technology and Innovation and the Spanish Plan for Research Scientific and Innovation.


Measures to promote the gender equality:
  • Reconciling work, private and family life. Vortex is compromised with our workers private circumstances, since its foundation.
  • Vortex has hired a grant manager with experience in gender issues, equal opportunity plans and the promotion of female talent in  research-innovation activities.
  • We will collaborate with public institutions such as the CDTI, FECYT to request their assistance for the implementation of an Equal Opportunities Plan in innovative SME.
  • We will establish internal protocols to attract female talent through the agreements with Universities/ Vocational Education Schools.
  • We will promote our participation in other H2020 SWAFS to foster gender equality in Startups and  innovative enterprises.

// Impact of the project

As a backbone for renewable energy production in Europe wind energy, has a key role in meeting both the 2020 energy targets. (20% lower gases emissions, 20% renewable, 20% energy efficient) (SET Plan). The increasing demand for clean and affordable energy all over the world will lead to an increasing demand for small wind turbines (SWT). Although the utility industry has moved into multi-megawatt turbines platforms and wind farms to provide energy to large demands, the SWT sub-sector has emerged to reach a different segment of the market.

The SWT sector is growing fast, at 10-18% growth during the last 2 years, as a result of increased environmental awareness, financial incentives, and maturity of the technology leading to lower prices of the technology compared to the previous years. As shown in figure 10, the forecast for the next years is very promising -conservative assumptions forecast a steady compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20% until 2020- in which solar and wind energy are expected to increase their market share to reach European demands on renewable energy for 2020 (20%).

``In absolute numbers, today China leads the SWT market (570,000 units), followed by USA (155,000 units), and the UK (24,000 units)7, although reason for this tendency in each country are not the same. Within Europe, the countries with more SWTs installed entirely coincide with the feed-in tariff scheme``

European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) has also highlighted the “high wind resources of Africa, Southeast Asia and Latin America as ideally suited for small wind application”, all these locations SWT has not yet been established. This is a market opportunity and a growth area for VORTEX to internationalize and expand.


The following market trends are the key factors for VORTEX’ business potential and company growth:


  • Growth of SWT depends strongly on the promotion of the feed-in tariff schemes during the next few years, and on new installation of such schemes in countries that this is still not promoted. By 2020, it is foresee that the cumulative installed power will reach at least 3,000MW, more than 4.5 times the current figures.
  • It is expected that after 2020 (while reaching/approaching European goals for renewable energy), legal frameworks and support schemes for sustainable energy technologies will be reduced or completely stopped. Hence, only the most competitive products will survive in the future market.
  • The end users of VORTEX are the same for conventional SWT: Small businesses, installations and households in rural and isolated areas. Our market research and industrial contacts confirm the high willingness-to-pay for the product due to:
  • Savings in energy bills combined with environmental awareness.
  • Promotion of SWT by governments to establish SWT as a more common energy source. The added values of VORTEX in this sector are: its easy acquisition and installation, the low maintenance and operational costs and its attraction of investors.


SWT is also currently growing fast due to the needed of renewable energy sources, in particular in developing areas and countries as well as remote areas. SWT can easily contribute to the electrification of millions of people’s houses, companies and installations in less accessible areas.

Vortex Work Packages

WP1 // Project Management


Objectives: General management, quality assurance, reporting. To ensure the correct achievement of project objective through a fluid and effectively administrative coordination, providing timely and efficient organisational and financial deliveries and meeting all the contractual commitments.

WP2 // Computer modelling


Objectives: Obtain an accurate computer model of a Vortex aerogenerator. The computer model will incorporate scalability effects, be fast and require low computational resources to allow optimising multiple design parameters.

WP3 // Wind generator optimization


Objectives: Optimization of the Vortex’s components. Optimization of aerodynamics and structure, including the material selection.

WP4 // Electric systems optimization


Objectives: WP4 is for the optimisation of the electric circuits, made up of tuning system, electric generator, control system, and ancillary equipment.

WP5 // Certification & homologation


Objectives: 5 units of the 100W VORTEX Bladeless generator will be constructed, intended to obtain certifications and homologations and to be installed in field, for commercial and demonstration activities.

WP6 // Commercialization activities


Objectives: To develop a business plan incorporating a detailed commercialisation strategy (dissemination and exploitation) and a financing plan in view of market launch. It will also include technology and market watch, as well as, Intellectual Property Rights issues.

WP7 // Communication & dissemination


Objectives: To promote the outcomes of the project, contributing to the appropriate exploitation of Vortex initiative.



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