Month of January, 2009

Low Velocity Hydro Power By VIVACE (Vortex Induced Vibrations Aquatic Clean Energy)

January 02, 2009 - 08:32:56 PM

Harnessing the current: An artist's rendition of how a commercial VIVACE system might look. Passive bars, positioned horizontally, are boxed together in a single unit that could be placed at the bottom of a river or in the path of an ocean current. Dozens of 500-kilowatt units could be grouped together in different configurations to create multimegawatt systems.
Credit: Vortex Hydro Energy 

The world's river and ocean currents carry an enormous amount of kinetic energy, but most of this water flows slower than four miles per hour. Existing turbine and water-mill technologies can't generate enough electricity at such speeds to make their deployment economically viable.

Researchers at the University of Michigan say that they have overcome this limitation by taking advantage of energy-packed vortices that are formed when water flows past a cylindrical object, even at low speeds. Salmon and trout are known to leverage the force created by these naturally occurring water swirls so that they can swim upstream. A new mechanical device designed to economically harvest that energy and convert it into electricity could turn waterpower into a much larger part of the world's renewable-energy mix.

"Anywhere we have currents, we can use it," says Michael Bernitsas, a professor in the department of marine engineering at the University of Michigan. He says that the first test of the device will be in the Detroit River, likely in 2010. "If we make it work, and I believe it will, it's going to be a major development," he says.  READ MORE »


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Better Place --"Sustainable, Zero-Emission Transportation as a Service"

January 02, 2009 - 10:03:38 PM


It’s simple. The car has evolved. Gas guzzlers have gone the way of the dinosaur - there’s a reason they call it “fossil fuel.” In their place we have electric versions of our favorite makes and models being developed by established car companies.

And the evolution of the car means the evolution of the entire transportation model. When we eliminate the dependence on oil, we eliminate the environmental and economic damage that came with it.

The good news is we’re evolving into something very familiar. The Better Place business model is one most of us already experience every day - with our mobile phones.  READ MORE »


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Hudson River Science Barge: Hyrdoponic Urban Farming

January 06, 2009 - 08:03:44 PM

Via the website of New York Sun Works - Sustainable Engineering

See the Video 

What is the Science Barge?

The Science Barge is a prototype, sustainable urban farm and environmental education center. It is the only fully functioning demonstration of renewable energy supporting sustainable food production in New York City. The Science Barge grows tomatoes, cucumbers, and lettuce with zero net carbon emissions, zero chemical pesticides, and zero runoff. It is powered by solar, wind, and biofuels, and irrigated by rainwater and purified river water.  READ MORE »