As e-commerce becomes interestingly popular among the younger population, receiving packages in an easier and safer way also becomes a concern. The traditional delivery method of leaving packages on doorsteps for single-family homes or handing them to the doorman at apartment buildings are not only vulnerable to theft but also time-consuming to process – an unreliable delivery method during predominate e-commerce era when a household receives multiple packages a day. A smart package locker system that could be configured to adapt the setting of residential/ commercial areas is expected to significantly improve package- receiving experiences. This technology has been implemented by Amazon in some neighborhoods and areas (Amazon Locker) but could be expanded to more residential/ commercial buildings potentially.
Technology: Smart Locker System
Install smart locker system in apartment/commercial buildings, residential areas based on estimated service population size and grant delivery carriers (UPS, USPS, FedEx, HDL) access to the locker.
Instead of going door-by-door to leave packages on the doorsteps or handing them to the doorman, delivery staff place packages inside the smart locker and input the recipient’s information in the locker by scanning the shipping label.
Once a package has been placed in a locker, an automated text message will be sent by the locker system to the package’s intended recipient with a barcode or PIN number.
To retrieve the package, the recipient simply scan the barcode he or she received earlier or input the PIN number at the smart locker
The smart locker system could also be utilized to drop-off out-going packages.
Postal carriers (UPS, USPS, FedEx, HDL, etc.)
Property owners of residential/commercial buildings
Smart locker system provider
Property owners/managers conduct a survey of building users and residents to estimate to estimate size of locker needed
Contact locker provider to configure and install smart locker system in the building
Grant delivery carriers access to the smart locker and provide them with proper training
The demand for global energy is projected to keep increasing at a compound annual growth rate of 21% per year until 2021. In this worldwide quest for more renewable energy, offshore wind power stands as the future of the sector by producing 40% higher output than its onshore counterpart due to the abundance of space and greater, consistent wind resources. As the pioneer in offshore wind power, the EU has experienced huge offshore wind power expansion in recent years. 3,230 turbines are now installed and grid-connected in 11 countries, for a cumulative total of 11,027 MW. Currently, the US came onboard with its first offshore wind farm off Rhode Island in 2016.
Technology: Offshore Wind Turbine
Offshore wind speeds tend to be faster than on land. Small increases in wind speed yield large increases in energy production: a turbine in a 15-mph wind can generate twice as much energy as a turbine in a 12-mph wind. Faster wind speeds offshore mean much more energy can be generated.
Many coastal areas have very high energy needs. 53% of the United States’ population lives in coastal areas, with concentrations in major coastal cities. Building offshore wind farms in these areas can help to meet those energy needs from nearby sources.
Offshore wind farms have significantly smaller negative impact on aesthetics of the landscape compared to wind farms on land because most offshore wind farms are not visible from shore.
However, offshore wind farm remains very expensive to construct, maintain, and deliver energy back onshore
Department of Energy
Regional Utility Companies
Conduct a comprehensive study of offshore wind energy, select offshore locations with greatest wind potential and lowest environmental impact possible
Review existing regulation with regard to offshore project
Planning and Design
Form public-private-partnership between utility company and the local government
Gun-related violence has become a pressing issue in many communities and resulted in a high level of healthcare cost and productivity loss for society. While the gun violence issue has many underlying causes, mobilizing law enforcement to act effectively and efficiently after the occurrence of shooting incidents is critical in preventing further shootings from happening. However, 8 out of 10 gun violence incidents are never reported to law enforcement for many reasons. Therefore, reporting shooting incidents to police in a timely manner becomes the critical first step since they cannot respond effectively if unaware of the incident. “ShotSpotter” is designed to solve this issue and reduce gun-violence by detecting gunshots and notifying law enforcement for the location of the shooting incident.
Acoustic sensors (high-sensitivity microphones) are installed in communities and buildings to detect gunshots in large and complex geographies
Once acoustic sensors identify and time-stamp impulsive noises (gunshot, the system then triangulates the location of the sound source to within 25 meters and runs features of the sound through machine classification
The Incident Review Center (IRC) human experts confirm the machine classification and publish an alert to law enforcement within 30-45 seconds
Notify law enforcement and first responders via a push notification, including precise location of the incident
Department of Transportation
Law enforcement identify “hotspots” of gun-violence incidents and engage citizens for employing the technology
Local government launch a pilot program to install Shotspotters in the neighborhood
Monitor performance of the detection system and provide feedback to provider
Install Shotspotters on citywide scale, including street, university campus, and park
As the 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution grants people the right to keep and bear Arms, 40% of the American households own at least one gun for protection. However, these legally obtained firearms are often used by unauthorized users to commit crimes after they are stolen and lost. Statistically, people who kill other people with guns in America acquire only 3% of their guns at gun stores while the other 97% are obtained through other means. Thus, preventing unauthorized use of firearms become critically important to protect not just our families but other innocent people from gun violence.
Technology: Biometric Gun Lock
Sentinl, a Detroit-based startup is designing a biometric gun lock called Identilock. Attaching to a gun’s trigger, it unlocks only when the owner applies a fingerprint.
The size, weight and functionality of IDENTILOCK won’t inhibit common storage and staging methods of firearms.
IDENTILOCK provides quick access to working firearms in a crisis scenario when the authorized user put his or her fingertips to the biometric sensor, just like unlocking your phone.
IDENTILOCK prevents the use and discharge of the firearm by unintended and unauthorized users.
National Rifle Association (NRA)
Firearm manufacturers and dealers
Legislative bodies at federal and state level
Identify compatibility and feasibility of installing the biometric gun to majority of handguns in the U.S.
Launched a pilot program with local law enforcement to test the prototype
Gain legislative support from federal and state level for gun lock related products
Sell them at firearm dealers as a optional but recommended part
A well-functioning transit system is a essential component of any major city. However, in cities with narrow streets and high level of traffic volume like NYC, buses or other transit vehicles often trapped in busy intersections, resulting in traffic congestion and excessive air pollution emitted by standstill vehicles. According to a mobility report issued by NYC government, in n central business districts like Midtown Manhattan, Downtown Brooklyn, and Jamaica Queens average travel speed for buses are often 4 mph or less. Prioritizing traffic signal at busy intersection for buses could lead to higher travel speed of buses and therefore improve overall efficiency and service quality of the transit system.
Technology: Transit Signal Priority
Transit Signal Priority (TSP) is a set of operational improvements for traffic lights that use technology to reduce dwell time at traffic signals for transit vehicles
Such a technology includes a detection system and a priority request generator aboard transit vehicles (or in centralized location)
As TSP equipped transit vehicles approach corridors, a signal will be sent by the priority request generator wirelessly to the traffic light control system
As the system receives the priority signal from transit vehicles, a set of pre-set strategies will be utilized to either hold green lights longer or shorten red lights until the transit vehicle pass the intersection
The same system could also be utilized to prioritize traffic signal for emergency vehicles like ambulances and fire trucks
Department of Transportation
Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Traffic signal providers
Identify intersections and corridors with highest traffic volume
Launched a pilot program to upgrade traffic signal system and install priority request generator in some transit vehicles (especially BRTs)
Evaluate effectiveness of the system and improve shortcomings
Employ the system in all transit vehicles and corridors to improve transit efficiency
Every day we inhale particulate matter which swirl around the our homes and offcies. Just because these fine particles are invisible to the naked eye doesn’t make them any less dangerous. According to research conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) high concentrations of fine particles increase the risk of asthma and allergic reactions. Furthermore, they are an important cause of respiratory problems in young children.
Technology: DESSO AirMaster Carpet
DESSO AirMaster is a flooring concept that traps and contains dust particles until it is time to vacuum clean again, which resulted in fewer dust particles being breathed in and a healthier indoor climate.
Very fine particles are absorbed by the thin yarns of the DESSO Air-filters
The unique structure of DESSO AirMaster prevents dust getting back into the air.
Regularly vacuum cleaning DESSO AirMaster ensures that dust particles are removed more simply and easily than from other carpets
Households in area with poor air-quaility
Office buildings and public buildings
Commercial space like restaurants and retail stores
Forming a partnership between DESSO and municipal governments (with poor air-quality) for a subsidy program
Access air-quaility of in-door space with particular attention to particulate matter
Install subsided DESSO AirMaster in qualified homes, office buildings and other public space
Unlike farmers in developed countries who have full access to sophisticated technologies, framers in many poorer countries are facing many challenges such as unreliable rainfall, low crop yields – lacking access to modern farming technologies. Powered- efficient and cost effective method of irrigation system being one of the most largest challenges as farmers are far away from stable utility grid and results in low crop yields and income of farmers.
Technology: SunCulture AgroSolar Irrigation System
The Sun Culture AgroSolar Irrigation Kit combines cost-effective solar pumping technology with a high-efficiency drip irrigation system.
The solar panels provide the pump’s electricity directly without the need for expensive batteries or inverters.
Water is pumped from water source (lake, river, stream, well, etc.) into a raised water storage tank during the day.
When irrigation occurs during the evening, a valve on the water tank is opened and water flows down (gravity) through a filtration system and onto crop root zones through irrigation tape.
Farmers in developing countries that lack access to modern irrigation system
Department of Agirculture
Governmental entities that oversights agriculture practices
Investors of agriculture in developing countries
Farmers with potential demand of such system contact Sun Culture to determine feasibility of installation
Contact department of agriculture or municipal government for potential subsidies and funding options
Install and deploy the irrigation system in large scale
Providing stable and clean energy in urban environment has been a great challenge for energy experts. This issue amplified by magnitudes during hot summers and cold winters when cities demand energy the most for cooling and heating. Due to highly uniformed life pattern of urban populations, energy demand usually peaks during noon when electricity-depend devices at office space are fully operating. During peak hours, fully-loaded grid also works less efficiently in delivering electricity. In order to alleviate burden of the grid during peak hours, utility companies have been imposing a surcharge per kWh but the issue remains far from resolved.
IceBank by CALMAC is a Thermal Energy Storage (TES) works as a rechargeable battery for a building’s air-conditioning system.
During night time and off-peak hours when electricity is cheaper and cleaner, water that contains 25% ethylene or propylene glycol is cooled by a chiller.
The chilled solution then circulates inside the tank, which is essentially a water tank. to freeze 95% of the water uniformly. Fully charge the tank takes from 6 to 12 hours, depending on the size.
During the day-time peak hours, the glycol solution circulates through the storage tank deliver energy to the building, augmenting or offsetting electric chiller cooling.
A fan blows air over the coils to deliver cooling or heating to the occupant spaces just like traditional air-conditioning but without consuming expansive peak-hour electricity from the grid.
A similar process would also be accomplished during winter to provide heating.
Other types of Thermal Energy Storage(TES) also exist in by using phase change materials (PCMs) or chemical reactions to store thermal energy while water being the cheapest option.
Systematically access feasibility of installing thermal energy storage in different buildings by architects and engineers.
Form partnership with utility companies to provide financial incentives for buildings that equip with thermal energy storage.
Work with building owners to determine the best TES option and start installation.