With hurricanes threatening Florida and typhoons lashing Japan, a startup company working on the island of Okinawa is testing a wind turbine that could withstand winds that blow the blades off traditional machines.

Backed by government grants and loans, Challenergy Inc., run by Atsushi Shimizu, is working to bring to market a machine that looks like an old-fashioned egg-beater, using rotating cylinders to generate electricity from the wind. His turbine, installed on Okinawa Island, is intended to be more resilient than traditional machines that are essentially large propellers.

His work taps into a need for wind turbines to cope with extreme conditions that scientists say could become more commonplace with global warming. Though typhoons regularly strike eastern China, the Korean Peninsula, Taiwan and Japan, the risk is that they may get stronger as ocean temperatures rise, researchers Wei Mei and Shang-Ping Xie wrote in Nature Geoscience in September. They found storms in Northern Asia have intensified as much as 15 percent in the last 37 years.