All Thayer Events

MS Thesis Defense: Simon Oster



10:00am - 11:00am ET

Jackson Conference Rm / Zoom

For info on how to attend by videoconference, please email

"Generating Heat Directly from Wind in the High Arctic"


The current reliance on fossil fuels as the main source of heating for remote off-grid homes and cabins in the high Arctic is expensive and unsustainable, challenging ways of life for Indigenous peoples who have lived there for many centuries. The presence of wind in certain regions unlocks the possibility for a heater to be powered through harnessing the wind's kinetic energy. Prior investigations of generating heat from wind are unconstrained by the limitations that the harsh Arctic environment poses.

This research investigates the design, testing, and development of a robust, simple wind-powered heater that is suitable for implementation in remote cabins and homes in the high Arctic. Various methods for generating heat from the rotational motion captured by wind blades are mathematically modeled to determine the most appropriate method to pursue. A magnetic induction heater is found to be the most suitable method to implement, and the conceptual design of the heater is presented. The detailed design and testing of the prototype magnetic induction heater is conducted, its performance is evaluated, and considerations for further design decisions are described. The final heater design is affordable and will generate heat using only the natural resource of the wind, thus providing a sustainable means for augmenting cabin or off-grid home heating in the cold, sunless Arctic winters.

Thesis Committee

  • Mary Albert, PhD (Chair)
  • Mark Laser, PhD
  • Stephen Doig, PhD


For more information, contact Theresa Fuller at