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INNOVATION

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Footsteps Power Stadium Floodlights

The floodlights of a new soccer field in Brazil are the world’s first to be powered by footsteps.

Located in a hilly slum near the center of Rio de Janiero, the soccer field features an energy technology called Pavegen, which generates electricity from the player’s movement.

A total of 200 Pavegen panels are installed beneath the field to capture the players’ kinetic energy during games. The panels, which are complemented by a solar PV system, can power the floodlights for 10 hours on a full battery.

Read more: http://onforb.es/1oMGQb8

Supply- Demand Energy Gap

Natural gas can help bridge the supply demand energy gap in the country

Did you know that the natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel and  highly efficient form of energy?

It is quite useful in bridging the supply demand energy gap in the country and its advantages by far supercede any other natural energy source.

Natural gasʼs combustion results in lot less pollution and  has fewer impurities. According to American Gas Association, “  Technological progress allows cleaner energy production than ever for all fuels, although the inherent cleanliness of gas means that environmental controls on gas equipment, if required, tend to be far less expensive than those for other fuels.”

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Cellphones to be charged with sound

On a quest for optimum utilisation of abundant energy around us, a group of scientist have been successful in converting the sound of traffic, roar in stadium, music, or the conversation on phone itself into electricity.

Utilising zinc oxide nanorods, a team of Queen Mary’s University and Microsoft were successful to create a prototype device similar the size of Nokia Lumia 925 that generates 5 volt of electricity, sufficient enough to charge a mobile phone.

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Discharge to Recharge

Have you ever wondered if things we considered as waste actually generated something which is most needed in the world? Energy from human waste. Scientists from Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore have devised an unique toilet system that converts human waste into electricity. The ingenious system also creates fertilizer and reduces water wastage as well.

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The non mix vaccum toilet is mechanized with scientific brilliance. It comprises of separate chambers for liquid as well as solid wastes which uses vaccum suction technology, similar to the ones used in aircraft lavatories. This enables this system to flush out the waste in just 0.2 liters of water against to the conventional toilets which uses almost about to 4 to 6 liters of water per flush.

The system changes the course of the liquid waste to a processing unit where it is processed and elements like nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium are recovered which can be developed into fertilizers. Simultaneously the solid waste is diverged into a bio reactor where it is further processed to develop bio-gas containing methane. Methane can be used as an alternative to natural gas and could be further used in stoves, can be converted into electricity and may further be used to power fuel cells.

Replacement of the same in restaurants, airports, public toilets and other public places would bring in a lot of change and revolutionize the waste treatment process entirely.

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Back to the FUTURE

Are we on the brink of a new era of technology? At least the giant traffic robot with macho robotic voice and steel arms situated in capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo hints so.

The design was introduced by a local cooperative which believes that these robots may be a permanent solution to the traffic chaos in the busy cities across the world. The initial model measuring 2.5 metres was installed last june at the busy intersection in Lumumba Boulevard in the central Limete district. However, the traffic robot was upgraded to a more sophisticated version in October, and deployed to control the traffic flow at a junction in front of the parliament of Congo.

140224101946-kinshasa-robot-cops-traffic-night-horizontal-galleryThe upgraded version of the robot consisted of a solar panel stand providing energy to the torso of the traffic robot, a green light on the breast plate of the machine which turns red when the robot raises its arms to signal the traffic to stop.

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The first hand feedback of the project was positive from the public and the official side. With similar smart energy efficient projects from all over the world we may find an #EnergySecure

 

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Plastic derived diesel

The most abundant form of litter found on land and sea, plastics can now be transformed into diesel, natural gas and similar petroleum products. This was concluded after a research that was led by an Indian- origin scientist.

As per the research, the transformation produced remarkably more energy than what is required for the process of conversion itself. The conversion results in transportation fuels when blended with low sulphur and bio diesels.

According to the lead researcher Brajendra Kumar Sharma, there are other benefits to the process as well. “You can get only 50 to 55 per cent fuel from the distillation of petroleum crude oil. “But since this plastic is made from petroleum in the first place, we can recover almost 80 per cent fuel from it through distillation,” Sharma said. Mr Sharma, a research scientist at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Centre at University of Illinois.

There have been similar researches on the similar concept where plastic was heated in an oxygen free environment to produce crude oil. This time the research team took the process a step ahead, however, by fractioning the crude oil into various petroleum products and testing the diesel fractions. ‘A mixture of two distillate fractions, providing an equivalent of US diesel, met all of the specifications’ required of other diesel fuels in use today — after addition of an antioxidant, Sharma said. “This diesel mixture had an equivalent energy content, a higher cetane number (a measure of the combustion quality of diesel requiring compression ignition) and better lubricity than ultra-low-sulphur diesel,” he said.

The research team was successful in blending up to 30% of their plastic derived diesel in form of regular diesel and detected no compatibility issues with the bio diesel. This might giant leap in the path of #EnergySecurity.

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The Flower Power

Solar plants now have come up with a solution to boost their power efficiency;concentrated Solar Power (CSP) plants. These plants use arrays of mirrors known as heliostats, which focus a large area of sun’s rays onto a tiny area. There the concentrated light is converted into heat and then transformed into electricity.

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With CSP gaining popularity as the method is being adopted around the globe by various solar plants, researchers have now devised a design that does not require vast space as the giant plants. These efficient designs can be constituted in a smaller area.

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With such innovations in the solar industry we can soon expect an #EnergySecure future.

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A SOLEful Walk

With the earlier post we discovered how every step counts towards an energy secure future and its still not time to stop. With the idea of harvesting energy through the sole it’s time to keep walking. SolePower, an energy harvesting company brings an effortless solution to the problem of worldwide energy crisis.

WosyCCpA regular looking yet extraordinary shoe designed by Solepower lets you harvest energy by simply wearing it. Each time you walk, the insert optimizes the energy in the user’s step by producing power during both the impact and swing phases of a user’s step. The entire device is fit into the insole of the shoe and can’t be felt by the user. There are 2 parts to it – the power-generating insert you step on and the battery holster that stores the power while you walk.

power-generating-shoeTo utilize the stored power, you can remove the batteries and plug it to any charging port with a USB adaptor. This energy can be utilized to charge small electronic devices. This innovative idea is a great way to capitalize on the energy which is otherwise lost to the surroundings.

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The first prototype was developed at the Carnegie Mellon University, as part of a capstone mechanical engineering design project. SolePower was founded by Matthew Stanton and Hahna Alexander in September, 2012.

It’s time that with initiatives like these every single one of us do our bit for an #EnergySecureIndia. To know more visit https://www.facebook.com/GAILIndia/app_228031434045297

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One step that will take you miles

Energy can be created from various sources that nature has granted. Now with human technologies growing smarter it can be yielded from motion as well. Pedestrians across the globe would soon generate energy simply while walking to work or taking strolls. This is possible because of “kinetic pavements” that covert footsteps into electricity.

A London based company “Pavegen” has developed energy harvesting tiles, made from recycled tires. The tiles, when stepped on stretch by 5 mm. This action results in 8 watts of kinetic energy which is then captured by the tile. The tile just consumes 1% of the energy created in the process of transmission. With more of the tiles and steps over them, an adequate amount of energy can be generated to light up the street lamps or even for storage purposes.

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This masterpiece of innovation has been used in important events in the past. It appeared in the London Olympics 2012, where it produced 72 million joules of energy. Recently, it was also installed at the start point, in the audience platforms and other key locations of the Paris Marathon. The energy produced during the event amounted to 5 kilowatts. This amount of energy is enough to power a laptop for 52 hours, drive an electric car for more than 15 miles or even light up an entire village of a developing nation for a day.

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With such innovative equipments we may soon be able to draw energy from almost anything without degrading the natural resources and causing environmental hazards.

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Heat up your food Cool down your bills!

With soaring inflation rate in the nation, anything that saves a few bucks seems like an additional income source. What if you are told that you can save a whole lot of cost incurred on LPG and simultaneously enhance the life and efficiency of your refrigerator?

A student from Malwa Institute of Technology (MIT) has forged a device which channels the heat that is induced from a refrigerator in heating food and warming water. This ingenious technology was crafted by the 21 year old Adarsh Mohan Dixit while repairing a water cooler at his friend’s shop. “I thought that when the cooler’s compressor becomes hot, its heat is a waste and it can be used to warm water,” he said. The device can heat up the water at scorching temperature of 60 degrees Celsius. “The heat of refrigerator is directed into an insulated steel chamber with the help of Copper condenser coil (tube) for warming water,” Dixit further explained.

Introduction of the device may cool off the electricity and the gas bill that is used while heating water and food. Adarsh stated “around 4kg of LPG gas worth around Rs 197 is being used for warming water and food in these restaurants. An annual saving of Rs 71,905 that can be made by this device in every restaurant.” In case of domestic usage the savings amount to Rs 20 a day or Rs 7200 on an annual basis. The device also cools down the refrigerator swiftly, enhancing its life and efficiency.

The young mastermind plans to manufacture the device in bulk in the future for which he has already received grants from Madhya Pradesh State Electronic Development Corporation (MPSEDC) and Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Centre (IEDC) for the project.

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Clean energy from plastic

When it comes to environment, plastic always has been a matter of concern. Now the researchers have come up with a selcouth solution; a combustion system which transforms the waste into a fuel identical to natural gas.

The process was crafted by Yiannis Levendis, whose expertise lie in combustion and device design. He has already led many clean energy projects. Prof.Levendis is a distinguished professor of mechanical engineering at Northeastern University, Boston.

The patent pending process consists of a simple step while burning plastic; pyrolytic gasification which involves heating up the waste to a temperature of 800 degrees Celsius in a completely oxygen-free surrounding. This transmutes plastic into a gaseous state which is then mixed with air before burning as a clean fuel.

Everybody knows burning plastic creates toxic byproducts; but not everyone knows plastic contains the same amount of energy per pound as a premium fuel.

Identical results were derived from combustion of biomass as well. This game changing technique may soon turn out to be a key solution to our global energy demand.

In the year 2011, global plastic production corresponded to approximately 280 million tons and just a puny amount of the waste was recovered for recycling. The remaining was dumped in landfills or oceans; resulting in immeasurable deaths of seabirds and marine mammals.

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Winds of change

Tidal energy contributes a significant amount of energy to the total renewable energy production around the globe. In order to make the segment more efficient; scientists and engineers are continuously working on finding innovative solutions to the constraints faced by wind turbines.

As of now, there are two practical modifications that can help squeezing out the most efficient production. Firstly, the turbines can be physically forged into more efficient models. This includes expanding the size of the blades or reshaping them etc. The second option is to optimise the location of the turbines.

The second part seems to lack the scope of improvement, but as a matter of fact it’s much more complex than it sounds. Since wind turbines are not mobile and can operate for decades, it involves plenty of variables to take into account before setting it up. Considering these hassles, now supercomputers are introduced for the job.

These supercomputers not only pin point the best locations to setup the turbine but also informs the favourable time to do so. These computers and software analyze petabytes of both structured and unstructured data which includes weather reports, tidal phases, geospatial and sensor data, satellite images, deforestation maps, and weather modelling research to do the job. These computers and modelling software are not just used in the installation of turbines. They keep the analysis going while in the operational phase. This determines the appropriate duration of maintenance and analyses data to further refine the technology from the learning.