Pair the paint with related tech like infrared-reflecting windows, and the effects are amplified. When the DOE tested a Cadillac STS with infrared-reflective glass (offered by automakers including Mercedes, Volkswagen, and Volvo) and solar reflective paint, it found the car’s cooling demands dropped by 30 percent (from 5.7 to 4.0 kW).
Though city dwellers may not realize it, agriculture is a big source of carbon emissions. That’s because of livestock’s production of methane, how manure is handled, and soil management (something as simple as tilling the soil releases greenhouse gases). Dairy geniuses Mike and Sue McCloskey, partners in one of the country’s biggest dairy operations, have come up with an elegant approach to tackling several of these problems at once in the hopes of creating a zero-carbon footprint dairy farm. At the heart of the operation: a process that turns their dairies’ tons of cow manure into natural-gas fuel. Here’s how it works.
Subcultron is a swarm of at least 120 self-directing, underwater robots being developed by scientists in six countries to monitor Venice’s polluted waterways and transmit environmental data to government officials.
The 21-year-old Dutch is the founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup, an ambitious operation involving a massive static platform that passively corrals plastics with wind and ocean currents. The array features a floating V-shaped boom so that fish and other marine life can swim underneath.
Further trials will take place off the coasts of Japan and the Netherlands, and if all goes to plan, the project will officially launch in 2020 and be the longest floating structure ever deployed in the ocean.
Engineers with the BMI Corporation and SmartTruck Systems ran models on Jaguar and Titan, two of the fastest supercomputers in the world available for open science projects.Truck models were put through computational fluid dynamics simulations, which were verified to accurately predict airflow within a tenth of an inch on a real vehicle. They also applied a genetic algorithm that mimicked the process of natural selection to optimize their design.
The work resulted in a trailer undercarriage tray that reduced drag and brought fuel savings of 6 percent. With additional refinements and components behind the trailer tandems and on the trailer’s sides, the 300-pound SmartTruck system can achieve 10 percent fuel savings.
Dutch airline KLM and Delft University of Technology have released concept designs for an aircraft with a "blended wing body", which could transport passengers non stop from Europe to Australia.
The AHEAD aircraft, which stands for Advanced Hybrid Engine Aircraft Development, would carry 300 passengers over a range of 14,000 kilometres – approximately the distance from Amsterdam to Perth.
To improve aircraft efficiency and allow for longer flights, KLM's engineering and maintenance department worked with engineers and designers at Delft University of Technology (TU Delft). The result is a design that features two sets of wings – a small pair by the nose and a large set at the rear – that blend into the body.
China has been installing more renewable-power capacity than fossil fuels for several years, a gap that's growing. In 2015, China will install 15 gigawatts to 18 gw of solar power alone, double the solar deployment in the U.S., according to an analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).
The chart below shows how, in the next 15 years, China is on track to have more low-carbon electricity than the entire capacity of the U.S. power grid. "Think of what their grid will look like in 2030," Michael Liebreich, founder of BNEF, said at the organization's annual summit last week in New York. "A very competitive advantage."
I had posted earlier about Israel’s desalination and water conservation success. Now California is trying the same – from Fortune
California, now in its fourth year of a devastating drought, may follow a similar trajectory. In April, Gov. Jerry Brown made a Ben Gurion–like plea, ordering state agencies to accelerate the use of cutting-edge technologies to bolster the water supply. That call turned into a tacit blessing for efforts like the Carlsbad Desalination Project, just north of San Diego, the largest desalination facility in the Western Hemisphere. The plant has been in the works for nearly two decades, with construction costs of $1 billion so far. After years of permit purgatory and lawsuits, it will finally go live this fall. By 2020 it is expected to provide upwards of 50 million gallons of fresh water daily, meeting about 10% of San Diego County’s water demand.
“Powerwall is a home battery that charges using electricity generated from solar panels, or when utility rates are low, and powers your home in the evening. It also fortifies your home against power outages by providing a backup electricity supply. Automated, compact and simple to install, Powerwall offers independence from the utility grid and the security of an emergency backup.”
Measures to increase the supply and reduce the demand were accelerated, overseen by the Water Authority, a powerful interministerial agency established in 2007.
Desalination emerged as one focus of the government’s efforts, with four major plants going into operation over the past decade. A fifth one should be ready to operate within months. Together, they will produce a total of more than 130 billion gallons of potable water a year, with a goal of 200 billion gallons by 2020.(see video on massive Sorek reverse osmosis plant below)
Israel has, in the meantime, become the world leader in recycling and reusing wastewater for agriculture. It treats 86 percent of its domestic wastewater and recycles it for agricultural use — about 55 percent of the total water used for agriculture. Spain is second to Israel, recycling 17 percent of its effluent, while the United States recycles just 1 percent, according to Water Authority data.