Recycled Batteries


In an effort to find a new use for and to preserve the batteries, obsolete military installations that dot the landscape, we have proposed installing wind turbines on them. In the United States, wind farms are typically constructed far from where the electrical energy will be used. Our small-scale approach will provide power very close to where it will be consumed, thereby reducing transmission loss.

An idiosyncratic suggestion such as this may be more symbolic than practical, but it serves to illustrate how new and old can be melded together in a mutually beneficial manner. The turbine receives a foundation at no energy cost, and the battery itself is recharged with a new function.


San Francisco Bay Area

The U.S. military built concrete bunkers along the Pacific and Atlantic Coasts from the late 1800s well into the twentieth century. Many of these historic structures were never called into service, but nonetheless were maintained until the late 1940s. Most of the batteries, as they are commonly called, have fallen into disrepair due to their proximity to the ocean and exposure to salt air. But because they were intentionally positioned with a clear trajectory to the sea, they enjoy steady winds, ones ideally suited for generation of wind

The now defunct cannon bases could serve as support for the turbine towers, and the interior of the batteries could house the electrical components for transforming the wind-generated direct current into alternating current to be used by neighboring buildings. This proposal is a kind of swords-to-plowshares approach for adaptive reuse of historic structures with little hope of being preserved by other means.

Other Research Projects

Copyright: Office of Charles F. Bloszies, 2024