uTree could be the future of urban energy generation

The Urban Photovoltaic Tree also known as the uTree Concept by Xabier Perez de Arenaza is a spin-off of a previous design named as the Urban Tree from the same designer. The uTree concept is developed to be a modernistic urban sculptural installation that can also expand as a source of power for elements such as traffic lights and public lighting systems. The uTree is basically shaped like a tree and its broad flat leaves are fitted with solar panels that harvest solar power during the day.


The energy collected by the uTrees can either be fed into a grid or stored into a battery for use by public structures for lighting as well as use in public transport systems. Presented at an Energy Club conferences at the IE business school in Madrid earlier this month, the uTree concept is one of the most realistic concepts for urban energy generation since these “trees” can be installed virtually anywhere as they do not require more than a few inches of floor space for the supporting pole and take up a few square feet of overhead space. A rotation engine optimizes energy production by ensuring that the leaves are always facing the sun at the correct angle while easy screwed connections allow each uTree to be easily set up and dissembled.

There are 77 cells per leaf and each generates over 2.5w energy per day. Each tree can generate over 1732.5W in an 8 hour day, which equals 13.86 KWH/day per uTree, or 5058 KWH per tree per year. This kind of energy would be sufficient to feed 20 street lights every night. Given the minimum maintenance they need once they are installed, these uTrees can be easily installed along pavements and streets and even in parks and on rooftops and serve as an alternate method of energy generation that can help communities get their public spaces off the grid.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *