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Articles tagged with: environmental

Dow Chemical Converts Sugar Into Cheap Plastic

For all of those who are concerned with global warming and renewable energy, it looks like we can now make cheap plastic from sugar cane. But at what cost? Well, surprisingly, it wouldn’t cost more than what we currently pay for petrochemical production.

Dow Chemical claims to be working on the world’s largest facility to make polymers from plants. The project will use 240 million liters of ethanol plant and the company will convert that product into hundreds of thousands of metric tons of polyethylene- the most commonly used plastic around the world.

MIT Prints Durable Solar Cells On Paper

Okay, so it might sound a bit counter intuitive to print solar cells on paper. After all, isn’t the whole purpose of solar technology so we can print less paper and save more trees from being destroyed?

Well maybe so, but that doesn’t mean we can’t find other applications for solar celled paper. MIT has been working on this project since last year, and the findings are quite incredible. The paper itself is an ordinary sheet of paper with a fine layer of colored rectangles, that, when connected to a few designated wires, generates solar electricity.

Cardboard Vacuum Cleaner Is One Green Machine!

If you were in doubt about certain appliances going ‘green’ you may be surprised by this article. We’ve recently caught a glimpse of a cardboard vacuum cleaner called the Vax. The concept was originally designed by Jake Tyler from Loughborough University.

The vaccum cleaner is supposedly a centerfold of sustainability, although I can’t speak volumes on whether it’s a machine that will last you through the years. After all, I can’t imagine holding up well to years of continuous humidity or heck, even a nearby leak.

SoloPower Raises $43.7M To Build Roll-Up Solar Panels

SoloPower, a manufacturer of flexible thin-film solar cells and modules has just raised another $43.7M in an equity round. This is on top of the $200 million the company had raised back in February from the US Department of Energy Loan Programs office.

The loan was made out to the company for them to build a full capacity facility, expected to produce 400MW of thin-film Photovoltaic modules annually. SoloPower is based in San Jose, the mecca of Silicon Valley and is in the works of building the largest manufacturing plant in Wilsonville, Oregon, as Tech Crunch reports.

Intel On The Forefront Of Green Technology

Thankfully, it doesn’t look like Google is the only one leading the pack on green technology. Intel is ramping up efforts to decrease its carbon footprint as well. Intel plans to focus on the monitoring the following areas and how its facilities affect them.

The areas of focus include energy, weather, climate, water, air quality, extreme events, agriculture, and transportation. Although it is unclear exactly what Intel plans to do in the aforementioned areas, the company will definitely focus on sustainability for its buildings.

Learn How A Hybrid Engine Works!

By now, you’ve definitely heard about hybrid vehicles, but do you know how they work? Well, a hybrid vehicle uses a mixture of gasoline and electricity. The electric part of the engine gets the vehicle started and the gas kicks in once the vehicle reaches a certain speed.

The concept is fairly easy to understand, but a graphic posted by AutoMD explains the procedure in depth. If you’re not in the mood for reading a colorful chart, I’ll summarize it for you.

Change Trains At High Speeds Via Boarding Dock

A man by the name of Paul Priestman used his Industrial design skills when he conceived of two trains, running continuously, that would allow passengers to switch trains even while moving at high speeds.

I am sure we have all seen this in some movie, where a character jumps between two moving cars, trains, buses, what have you–the only difference with this concept is that this would be safe and not trigger a ton of adrenaline while you switch trains.

Virgin Airlines Drops $1.4B On Fuel-Efficient Engines

Modern day aircrafts currently run on fossil fuels that both pollute the environment, and are a limited natural resource (AKA, it cannot be recreated or made). Thankfully, Virgin Airlines is stepping up to the plate by spending $1.4 billion on ultra fuel-efficient engines.

Rather than adopting biofuel technology, which is still at an infant age, Virgin Airlines is instead investing in ultra fuel-efficient aircraft. The engines are designed by CFM International and are touted to save $1.6 million in fuel costs each year, per plane.

Google Invests $280M On Solar Panels

Google has spent over $700 million so far this year on clean energy. The money will directly fun the installer, SolarCity to offer solar powered systems to homeowners for no down payment. In exchange, customers will have to pay a fixed price for the power produced by the panels.

Google will earn a return on investment by charging SolarCity interest to use its money, allowing Google to also take the benefits of federal and local renewable energy tax credits.

Airbus Demonstrates Concept Plane For Year 2050

Airbus has an awesome new concept plane that it hopes will be in wide-scale production and use by the year of 2050. While we can’t estimate ticket prices, we can give you a few clues on what we may see in the upcoming decades.

Following the form-factor of a bird’s flight, the new airplane will have a skeletal formation with many transparent windows (likely tinted) that will allow the plane to be much lighter, thus requiring much less fuel.