The Internet Could Heat Your Home

Problem: the need for connectivity and bigger servers is increasing, but they are hugely energy intensive.

Solution: Give the produced heat a purpose, to create energy savings somewhere else and prevent energy wastage.

  • Data centers require a large number of fans and cold water to keep them cool. The fans are really loud, and the heat produced is usually wasted.
  • Stockhold Data Parks runs in partnership with the city’s government, Fortum Värme (heating and cooling agency) to try to optimize the use of this heat.
  • Cold water feeds through pipes to the data centre, where it is heating through the data centre’s cooling process, and then runs back to Fortum’s plants where it is used for heating.
  • Stockholm Data Parks expects to generate enough heat to warm 2,500 residential apartments by 2018, but the long term goal is to meet 10% of the entire heating need of Stockholm by 2035.

Article: Link

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Stakeholders: 

  • Possible commercial customers (shopping malls etc)
  • Residential buildings – 10 MW of energy is needed to heat 20,000 modern residential apartments, whereas an average Facebook data centre uses 120 MW.
  • Companies with data centers
  • City governments and local utility providers

Deployment steps: 

  • List and contact stakeholders (listed above)
  • Model partnerships between heat producers and consumers which are geographically efficient.
  • Value the cost incentive – will it save money overall with the new infrastructure investment?

Comment on CyberRain:

This technology could have the potential to be expanded to cities that make use of rainwater for other uses, or monitor city-wide water management during unpredictable rainfall seasons and drought conditions. It could also be incorporated into water payment systems to create incentives for water savings on irrigation.

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Improving resiliency of concrete structures with recycled tires

Sustainability Problem:

Landfills and sewage plants produce methane, which is a greenhouse gas and a contributor to climate change. Moreover, durability of concrete structures is always questionable.

Technology:

University of British Columbia engineers have developed a more resilient type of concrete using recycled tires.

Recycled-rubber roads are not new. But using the polymer fibres from tires has the unique benefit of potentially improving the resilience of concrete and extending its lifespan by reducing crack formation by more than 90 per cent compared to regular concrete.

Adding the fibre to concrete could shrink the tire industry’s carbon footprint and also reduce the construction industry’s emissions, since cement is a major source of GHG. One recycled tire produces 1kg or fiber that can be used to make concrete stronger. Almost three billion tires are produced each year around the world that ultimately land up in landfills. Therefore, these tires can be recycled to generate close to three billion kilograms of fibre.

Stakeholders:

Landfill / waste plant operators, Waste management operators, Civil engineers, urban landscape developers, city government

Implementation:

  1. Since adding the fibre to the concrete leads to improved durability with better resistance to loads and cracking,  this technology could be used for concrete structures like buildings, roads, dams and bridges while reducing landfill waste and lowering the carbon footprint of the city. Introducing this new technology via smaller pilot projects in infrastructure development is suggested as the first step to implementation
  2. Expand scope and application of technology to bigger infrastructure and development projects
  3. Monitor the progress of this technology and record data on how it has reduced the environmental impact and lowered maintenance costs

Article: https://www.dsiac.org/resources/news/when-rubber-hits-road-recycled-tires-fibers-create-stronger-concrete-reduce-waste

uni: hps2120

Comments on other posts:

“Addressing the World with Three-word Phrases”- Interesting feed! It will be easier to get in touch with Refugees (Political/war/natural disasters) too
“Smart Recycling Bin”- This is a smart technology for a smart solution to trash management. Do we know the cost of implementing such a technology in one smart bin?

Highway of The Future

1: Area of sustainability category: Transportation

Every year, there are about 11,000 tire-related crashes and nearly 200 fatalities. Besides these disasters happened on human beings. Our ecosystem is being damaged because there are around 150 tons of carbon emitted daily just on our corridor, so we needed to transform the transport infrastructure quickly.

2: “5 tech-related inspirations from VERGE 17

  • Wattway developed solar panels that can be put on top of the existing surface of roads and have skid-resistant surface
  • “PV for EV,” a photovoltaic solar array for fast-charging electric vehicle charging stations that send excess energy back to the visitor center
  • WheelRight tire safety station: Cars drive slowly over the black-and-yellow striped pavement, where sensors take measurements. Drivers then stop at a touchscreen kiosk that spits out a printed sheet or sends a text message within 20 seconds showing tire pressure and tread depth.

3: Implementation

  • Communicate with more state governments like Georgia and convince them to apply this new highway.
  • Find smart city project principal and persuade them to use this high-tech road since The Ray can not only be applied in highway infrastructure, it can also be applied to local roads which may help to build a more sustainable and safe community.
  • Find international potential partners by Attending oversea events which aim to build connections between the realms of technology and corporate sustainability.

4: Stakeholder

  • State agencies who take charge of the highway infrastructure
  • Auto manufacturers which invest on autonomous driving and acknowledge the importance of better highway condition
  • Private companies which want to implement their related technologies on this innovative high-tech highway.

source:

http://www.raycandersonfoundation.org/assets/pdfs/AJCTheRay071717TextVersion.pdf

https://www.greenbiz.com/article/heres-what-sustainable-highway-looks

Comment on ” CO2 Inhaling Plants

This technology can also collect CO2 from the air and supply it to a nearby greenhouse to grow the plant, make low-carbon fuels, and be sequestered in the ocean or underground.

CO2 Inhaling Plants

Area of sustainability: Pollution and health

Sustainability issue:

Pollution from cars, trucks, ships et.c. is an ever-increasing problem, and heavily localized pollution is a health hazard for the population.

Technology:

  • A number of startup companies has designed a solution that will help with this issue. It is based on building plants that will suck in the polluted air, and convert the CO2 to usable products, such as diesel fuel. This way, the pollution will be recycled and reused instead of being released into the atmosphere where it can harm the environment.
  • This will also be beneficial in big cities like Shanghai where air pollution is a huge health hazard, and people are advised to stay indoors when it is at peak levels. This should not be necessary, and this technology can help aid this.
  • This technology will reduce the effect of CO2 emissions from cars, ships, plants, farm equipment et.c. and in turn roll back the atmospheric concentrations of CO2 by directly capturing CO2 from the air.

Stakeholders:

  • Government
  • Plant facility management
  • Construction companies
  • Engineers
  • Maintenance companies

 

Implementation:

  1. Find the areas in a city where a plant like this would have the greatest effect
  2. Get permission from the government to build one of these plants near the city
  3. Make sure all procedures in the plant are well thought out, and that the processes will go safely

 

Main article: https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/jul/14/carbon-direct-air-capture-startups-tech-climate

Other sources: http://www.healthandsafetyinshanghai.com/shanghai-air-quality.html

UNI: ms5584

My comment on another article:

https://makeasmartcity.com/2017/10/12/using-drones-to-monitor-air-pollution/#respond

“This will enable testing the air quality in areas that are not usually easily accessible. It is also a cost efficient way to analyze the air quality, so that more of the available funds can be spent on the research and development of solutions which will help improve the air and thus also the health of the population.”

Air Purification through Carpet

Sustainability Issues

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

Stakeholders 

  • Households in area with poor air-quaility
  • Office buildings and public buildings
  • Commercial space like restaurants and retail stores

Deployment 

  • 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

 

Source: http://www.desso-airmaster.com/en/home/consumer/desso-airmasterr-for-home/desso-airmasterr-for-home-ensures-a-healthier-indoor-climate/

MH3730

Geothermal Earth Tubes

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Geothermal Earth Tubes Shown on the Right

The Problem
A lot of energy is wasted in office buildings after hours to try to keep the temperature in the building at an optimum temperature especially just before workers enter in the morning. Using energy during the night is wasteful and cooling and heating units produce GHGs that are harmful to the climate.

Technology: Geothermal Earth Tubes
The technology takes advantage of the difference in temperature between the ground and air. In winter, the ground is typically warmer than the air and the opposite is true for the summer. Since these tubes are in contact with the ground, they acquire the same temperature. During a cold night, cold air is sucked into these tubes and it travels through the ground, it slowly absorbs heat from the tube and ground and finally, the tube delivers the air to the building and provides heat, as well as fresh air and circulation. This technology does require maintenance to remove dust accumulated from outside. Also, monitoring technology is needed to control temperature levels and flow.

rtd-earth-tubes-xl
Cooling Air in the Summer

Stakeholders
Residents and companies in areas where a constant need for heating or cooling is present. Manufacturers of sensors used, construction companies as well as concrete suppliers. Electricity provider who might see their revenues fall.

Next Steps
Market this new technology as futuristic and taking advantage of natural phenomenas that promote reduction of GHG emissions by humans. Promote use of earth tubes with construction companies to utilize time efficiency with installation process (These can easily be installed while construction in place). 

By: Ahmad Al Zubair (aa4098)

Resources used: