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Posts Tagged "solar power"

Observations

Hard Road Ahead for Solar Freakin’ Roadways

solar-road-panels

Take a solar panel. Surround it with light-emitting diodes attached to a microprocessor and, in northern climes at least, some kind of heater. Sheath all of that with the 100-year-old technology known as tempered glass. Voila: the basic building block of what has been dubbed by its creators, electrical engineer Scott Brusaw and his wife [...]

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Observations

Fight over Solar Power Returns to White House Roof [Video]

obama-white-house-solar-panels-installed

The sunshine that warms Washington, D.C. is once again generating electricity for the White House. After an absence of nearly 30 years, the Obama administration has announced that a 6.3 kilowatt photovoltaic installation of the “typical size for an American house,” is back on the White House roof and generating power. The Obama administration had [...]

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Observations

Solar-Powered Ford Aims to Drive Off-Grid

Ford,solar,CES,auto

Solar-powered cars have been little more than a novelty to date, experimental vehicles resembling photovoltaic-laden surfboards designed mostly for racing across deserts. Expensive batteries, relatively inefficient PV energy conversion and the lack of intense sunlight in many places have made sun-powered passenger vehicles impractical. Ford is looking to change that with a version of its [...]

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Observations

SA Author Tells David Letterman How to Power the World on Renewables [Video]

How do you convince the American public that the entire country, and indeed the entire world, could generate all of its energy from the wind, the sun and water? Go on The Late Show with David Letterman, be earnest, present the plan you published in Scientific American and have Letterman smile at you. That’s what [...]

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Observations

More Solar Panels at the White House

white-house

The Washington Post‘s indefatigable Juliet Eilperin got an unnamed official at the White House to confirm that solar panels are being reinstalled at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue this week—fulfilling a promise made by the Obama administration three years ago. President Jimmy Carter famously put solar hot-water heating panels on the White House roof in the 1970s [...]

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Observations

How to Use the Bathroom on a 20-Hour Plus Solar Airplane Flight [Video]

In a bid to set the record for longest distance solar flight, Andre Borschberg will pilot the Solar Impulse airplane from Phoenix to Dallas. Total flying distance, barring route deviations due to weather or other factors, would be nearly 1,400 kilometers, or more than 200 kilometers farther than the previous longest flight set in 2012. [...]

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Observations

What Will Steven Chu’s Energy Legacy Be?

steven-chu

Steven Chu will step down as Secretary of Energy at the end of this month, though he “may stay beyond that time so that I can leave the Department in the hands of the new Secretary,” he wrote in a farewell letter to Department of Energy (DoE) staff, issued February 1. Regardless, when Chu leaves [...]

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Observations

Solar-Powered Catamaran Circumnavigates Earth

PlanetSolar catamaran

This Friday, May 4, a vessel named Tûranor PlanetSolar will become the first totally solar-powered boat to circumnavigate the Earth. The broad, V-shape catamaran left Monaco on September 27, 2010, traveled west on a mostly equatorial route, and will return to the Monaco Yacht Club 584 days later. Now crossing the northern Mediterranean Sea from [...]

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Observations

White House to get (more) solar panels

jimmy-carter-solar-thermal-panel

Following the lead of presidents from George W. Bush to Jimmy Carter, the Obama White House—or specifically the Obama family’s living quarters—will get solar panels. While Carter’s solar thermal panels are long gone (one of them is in China and the Obama White House last month rebuffed the return of another), photovoltaics installed by President [...]

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Observations

Jimmy Carter’s solar panel makes it back to Washington, but not back onto the White House

jimmy-carter-solar-panel-at-solar-one

In 1979, President Jimmy Carter had 32 panels installed atop the White House to capture the sun’s heat. Thirty-odd years later, at least one of the panels still works, warming up in the Northeastern sunlight of Boston and sending steam heat out of a spigot on September 8, en route down the east coast from [...]

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Plugged In

NYC Apartment – 420 square feet, eight rooms, with solar

LifeEdited-Living-Room

A New York City apartment – 420 square feet and eight “rooms.” Also equipped with a bit of solar power with battery energy storage to charge up your cell phone and power a light or two. This is the home of treehugger.com and lifeedited.com founder Graham Hill. One of the keys to Hill’s apartment is creating [...]

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Plugged In

Actively making a difference – 4th grade class goes off the grid

Screen Shot 2013-07-23 at 3.46.56 PM

After studying energy sources in their fourth grade classroom, Aaron Sebens — a teacher at Central Park School for Children — and his students decided to go off the grid. Or, at least part of the way off the grid. Using a Kickstarter fundraising campaign, they turned their idea to power their classroom with solar [...]

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Plugged In

Solar in Electricity’s Birthplace

NYCsolarmap

New York City has been called the birthplace of electricity itself. In 1882, Edison’s Pearl Street Station in lower Manhattan became the country’s first central power plant, bringing 800 incandescent light bulbs to life.  Today, New York City draws its power from a mix of far-flung fossil fuel, nuclear, and renewable (primarily hydroelectric) energy resources. [...]

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Plugged In

Light on Landfills: Solar energy covers turn maxed-out landfills into solar farms

Hickory Ridge landfill outside of Atlanta, GA, is full. Like most landfills that reach capacity, it was capped to contain its noxious mix of debris that will slowly degrade over the decades and centuries to come. But unlike most, Hickory Ridge glistens on a sunny day due its over 7,000 thin-film photovoltaic solar panels plastered [...]

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Plugged In

SunShot – Driving Toward the Dollar Watt

solarpanels

Since 1995, the U.S. has seen the price of solar systems drop by 60% thanks to investments by government and private organizations in research, development, and deployment activities. Over the last decade alone, the U.S. Department of Energy has invested more than $1 billion into solar energy research and development – with a focus on how to [...]

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Plugged In

Solyndra – Illuminating Energy Funding Flaws?

solyndra_ARRA

Solyndra, once viewed as a sure winner in the solar industry, has closed its doors. Their technology works and they appear to have reached their goals for cost reductions. But, just 16 months after President Obama visited their manufacturing site and only 2 years after the Department of Energy approved $535 million in federal loan [...]

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