SoftBank to Invest in Altaeros’ Airborne Wind Turbine Technology

Dec. 5 (Bloomberg) — SoftBank Corp., founded by
billionaire Masayoshi Son, will invest $7 million in Altaeros
Energies Inc., a U.S. company developing airborne wind turbines.

Altaeros is working to commercialize technology to lift
wind turbines into consistently high altitudes so they can
produce more power than tower-mounted turbines, the companies
said in a statement today.

Airborne turbines hold promise for remote islands and areas
in Japan and the Asia-Pacific region, Son said in the statement.
The technology also has potential to create new businesses by
combining it with communication and surveillance technologies,
he said.

Altaeros’ device, called Buoyant Airborne Turbine, adapts
existing technology for tethered aerostats, which have lifted
heavy communications and monitoring equipment into high
altitude, according to the company website. BAT uses a shell
filled with helium and a lightweight turbine and a portable
ground station.

Altaeros was founded in 2010 at the Massachusetts Institute
of Technology.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Chisaki Watanabe in Tokyo at
cwatanabe5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story:
Reed Landberg at
landberg@bloomberg.net
Keith Gosman, Jason Rogers

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