Home Wind Power Simple As Plug And Play?

[Editor’s Note: A previous version of this story read this turbine design is capable of 400 kWh per month, when in fact it is 40 kilowatt hours per month. EarthTechling regrets the error.]

Plug and play wind power? That’s the idea behind SmartBox Wind Turbine, one of the many bright ideas seeking your support in the GE Ecomagination Challenge, which focuses this year on innovative ideas for powering the homes of the future.

This patent-pending technology comes to us via Clarion Power, which picked up the Consumer Innovation Award GE’s Ecomagination Challenge last year for its SmartBox Plug-In Solar system. The company’s SmartBox Wind Turbine is similar in its focus on “out of the box,” homescale renewable energy that does not require special skills to install, as it plugs directly into any existing outlet and provides power that can be used anywhere in your home

SmartBox Wind Turbine

image via Clarian Power

The SmartBox Wind Turbine kit comes with everything you need to get the system up and running, including a wind turbine with built-in micro-inverter, mounting hardware, the SmartBox Gateway, and all necessary power cables. It features built-in circuit protection, a maximum output of 3.2 amperes, and doesn’t require a dedicated electrical panel.

The system, which has a wind turbine output of 400W at 28 mph, is reportedly capable of producing 40 kilowatt hours per month at wind speeds averaging 12 miles per hour and retails for $699-$799. According to Clarian Power, the system will pay for itself in reduced electricity bills within 5-8 years, or less after rebates and tax credits.

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.


  • Reply February 16, 2011


    This is fantastic…I truly think there should be discounts on the price. Maybe add some solar panels to the top…awesome! Great job!

  • Reply February 16, 2011

    shawn skinner

    where can someone buy this in Canada?

  • Reply February 16, 2011


    400kwh per month is not possible: 3.2A * 120V = 384W * 24 hours/day * 31 days in a month only gets you to about 280kwh/month – factor in wind only blows 1/3 the time in most places and most of them do not have 12mph wind often and the payback is probably a factor of 5 or times times the 5-8 years mentioned – tax breaks would help…

    • Reply October 20, 2015


      I would like more information on this or a better way
      thank you,

  • Reply February 16, 2011


    checked the website just to make sure – output is only 40kwh/month not 400 – so payback is $4 month where I live or about 20 years – if I could get 12 mph wind which I cannot get often – so probably 50-100 year payback… but the concept is interesting –

  • Reply February 21, 2011


    when computing payback we must take into consideration the hyper inflation caused by peak oil. The payback will be much sooner than you think.

    we are getting oil out of the canadian tar sands the hard way. we wouldn’t do that if we were not almost out. we are using equally as much oil to get natural gas out of the ground as the amount of energy that poison hydro fracked natural gas provides.

    The long argument against green tech has always been efficiency and cost. Green tech is in an infancy like as in a Model T to a Ford Mustang. If we can put a man on the moon and build awesome weapons and nuclear power plants and drill a mile underwater, we can accelerate wind and solar beyond our wildest dreams.
    Fossil Fuels will surpass the cost of green tech sooner than later.

  • Reply February 27, 2015


    Sounds great for someone like me; we live in a VERY high wind area and I wonder if the more wind it receives to generate the more savings you have or if it bottoms out at only 40 kilowatt hours per month no matter how much wind you receive to the unit.

    • Reply June 14, 2015


      First of all, 40 kilowatts, is A LOT!! These units typically have ‘brakes’ on them to prevent over rotation, so as to prevent damage in really high winds. They are talking average, you may get more. Buy more than one if you need to. I have 2 wind turbines that keep my batteries topped off, while solar is my main charging device. I have been off grid for 15+ years now, and have never regretted it.

  • Reply October 25, 2015

    Mister Thomas

    Nice. I would like to see what you can get when you install 5 or 6 of them in a line.

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