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Students design mini-windmill to aid disaster victims

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Updated: 5/02 11:40 am
By Lin Sue Cooley
NBC News

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Imagine your home is destroyed by a tornado or hurricane. There's no electrical power for miles and the battery on your cell phone is dying.

That's the scenario a group of Northern Arizona University students were imagining as they set out to engineer a portable windmill that can generate enough energy to power small devices in cases of emergency.
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"After tornadoes and hurricanes, we want to be the first people out there to help people out," said senior Andrew Hoffman.

In instances like this, a cell phone may be your only source of communication.

While the battery won't last forever, senior Torey Schreiner noted, "Post hurricane, post tornado, there's still a lot of wind and we wanted to harness that."
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