There are conflicting reports about the purported energy efficiency of these new bladeless fans. On the one hand, they save a ton of energy on the air intake, as the design allows the fans to take in air from behind and around the machine with little effort. On the other, there are a lot of bad customer reviews about this thing, many claiming that it’s fairly worthless as an air circulator or room cooler.
Consensus seems to be that it’s more energy-efficient (though not as good) than air conditioning, but that it’s less energy-efficient than a normal bladed fan because of quality of output.
Since it is stated that the air volume delivered by this fan is 15x the intake volume, I think the air pressure or its speed would be 1/15 of the intake, too. This would be the cause of some insatisfaction reported by some users.
It seems to me that some user perception tests should be done in order to compare this fan to a regular blade fan, with the same diameter and mounted with (exactly) the same brushless energy efficient electric motor. Maybe some experiment, like ‘How many time to evaporate 100 ml of water, using both machines, under the same conditions’.
This would allow classifying this product as a energy usage breakthrough, instead of as a mere novelty.
The question should have a trivial answer. You measure the amount of air that moves over a period of time and divide by the power consumed. This would be the obvious metric of efficiency. Having said that, I haven’t done the test and so far haven’t been able to find the results on the Web. However, my intuition is that it cannot be as efficient as a regular fan because of the turbulence in the flow of the air from the base to the discharge vents in the ring. However, it is possible that it could be better if the brushless motor is significantly more efficient, but I don’t see any reason you couldn’t design a conventional fan with the same kind of motor.
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