I just returned from the Green Expo in Palm Springs, California. I live in the area, so I had to check it out. It was the first annual Green Expo. I went in the afternoon and found that there was plenty of parking available. It seems that the attendance was less than expected, but I don’t know what the organizers expected. The exibitors were a mix of architects, green building material reps, and vehicle sales, and environmental activists, not to mention politicians. I have a lot of material to read up on, so I will be doing a spotlight on the companies and organizations that I visited during the show. For a preview here are the companies I will be reviewing:
- Pro-Active Green Technology Land Development
- iPower: Pure Energy
- Green World Construction
- Plug In America
I’m sure there will be others mentions as I do my research and let you know what I find.
This article in September 11th, 2006 edition of Business Week describes the greenest house on the planet as judged by the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED rating system. The owner of the house is Steve Glenn of PeopleLink. His design includes many aspects of PositivEnergyOutput. He uses multiple ways to reduce consumption and increase production.
Here is a list of technolgies included in his home design:
- Solar Powered Radiant Heating
- Recycled Rain Water
- Solar Electricity
- LED Lighting
Some technologies he could have included are:
- Wind Turbines
- Geothermal heating and cooling
- Human Power
Stephen Rees sent me a link to this article about engineers studying nature to come up with the next technological breakthroughs. It got me thinking that universities all over the world need to start teaching and starting programs on biomemetics. Nature is the source of all inspiration. Leonardo Da Vinci studied nature when designing his flying machine, and all his other inventions.
Think about this. We are made of the sun. The sun is 98.5% of the mass of the entire solar system. We are made from the sun. The sun is our progenitor. We are born from nature. We are sustained by the sun. Everything on earth has been provided to us by the sun. It is no wonder that people have worshiped the sun since the beginning of time. Now we are more knowledgeable about how the sun works, and how very dependent we are, we can make our lives easier by using what nature has designed, and appropriating the design. The great thing about nature’s design is that is has been tested under the harshest critic, nature. If you don’t pass muster with nature, you’re gone.
technorati tags: biomemetics, engineers, technology, breakthrough, nature, solar, system, mass, sun, sustainable
Here is an excertp from Wired Magazine.
Below are some examples of the MIT research projects the Energy Research Council will be sponsoring and developing:
- Spinach solar power: Tapping the secrets of photosynthesis — engineering proteins from spinach — to make organic solar cells whose efficiency could outstrip the best silicon photovoltaic arrays today.
- Silicon superstrings: A novel approach to manufacturing conventional silicon photovoltaic arrays by pulling the chips in stringy ribbons out of a molten stew like taffy rather than slicing them from silicon ingots.
- Laptop-powered hybrids: Using a new generation of lithium-based batteries (which power most portable electronics today) to cut the price and charge-time of hybrid and electric car batteries.
- Tubular battery tech: Using “supercapacitors” made from carbon nanotubes to store charge — rather than the chemical reactions that power most batteries — resulting in a lightweight, high-capacity battery that could someday give even the laptop battery a run for its money.
- Hold the A/C: Optimizing air and heat flow on a new computer-aided design system, before a building’s construction begins, allowing for the building’s air conditioning costs to be cut by as much as 50 percent.
- Hybrid without the hybrid: Turbocharging an automobile engine with plasma from a small ethanol tank (which would need to be refilled about as often as the oil needs changing), reportedly increasing fuel efficiency almost to the level of a hybrid — but only adding $500-$1,000 to the car’s sticker price.
- More light than heat: Generating a car’s electricity photoelectrically (using a gas-powered light and a small, specially designed solar panel) rather than mechanically (using an alternator), substantially increasing fuel efficiency.
- Coal-powered biofuels: Bubbling exhaust from a coal-fired power plant through a tank of algae that’s been bred to siphon off much of the exhaust’s carbon dioxide — in the process, fattening the algae that can then be harvested as biodiesel.