Tesla’s CTO Just Backed A Startup That Makes An Ice Battery

Source: http://fortune.com/2016/08/03/tesla-cto-ice-battery/

Sustainability Problem

One of the biggest problem in electricity is the peak load. The grid has to meet all the demand every time and needs to be ready for that. So the difference between peak demand and normal time there are lots of power plants that are resting. Besides If  you shave even a small amount from peak demand and add it other times of the day it would same millions of dollars to government as the highest bidder who is helping to meeting highest demand on a certain time is the one who determines the cost of electricity to all of the power generators. This emphasizes the importance of storage.

Technology Article Summary

 

In this article a startup called Axiom Energy claims to find a solution for Supermarkets for the peak hour. Company sells technology that plugs into super market refrigeration units and uses tanks of frozen salt water as a way to store energy and lower supermarket energy bills.

During peak times this supermarkets shift to use this technology, frozen salt water tanks, to keep cool the refrigerators and at nigh when the demand and electricity prices are low they can freeze the tanks with electricity. They called it as Refrigeration Battery. It is basically using thermal energy.

Stakeholders

First supermarkets later it can be various places like data centers, cold storage units etc.

But on the big picture as it supports shaving on peak demand every tax payer would benefit.

Deployment

 

Right now although this is a new startup they are just getting their first commercial systems installed. (https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Axiom-Exergy-Raises-2.5M-For-Thermal-Energy-Storage). Besides they have got attention of celebrities of tech world thus i think the future is bright for them

 

A More Accessible Waste Water Treatment Plant

S200-plant-layout

Sustainability Problem

Many developing countries don’t have proper sewage systems, which contaminates rivers, bays, oceans, etc. and gets into drinking water, causing sickness.

Technology

Raw sewage contains many pathogens that are harmful to humans. Fortunately, there is enough energy in the biomass to boil the water and make it bio-safe. Janicki Bioenergy has designed a small plant which costs roughly $1.5-million and can process sewage for a community of about 100,000 people.

The technology is very different than a traditional waste water treatment system because, instead of taking electricity from the grid, releasing water vapor into the atmosphere, and using natural gas for operations, the OmniProcessor recaptures used energy and uses it again. This process makes it a lot cheaper and more environmentally-friendly.

Stakeholders

  • Citizens of developing countries
  • Governments of developing countries
  • Water treatment companies
  • Medical practitioners

Steps to implementation

  • Propose as water crisis solution to UN, other agencies, getting developing countries interested.
  • Find external sources of funding for several projects.
  • Start several pilot programs in different countries.
  • Assess whether it is a scalable technology.

Sources

http://www.wired.com/2015/01/omniprocessor/

http://janickibioenergy.com/s200.html

Implantable sand-sized sensors to monitor internal goings-on​ in real time

In their current form, the researchers say the sensors could be used not just for monitoring, ...In their current form, the researchers say the sensors could be used not just for monitoring, ...In their current form, the researchers say the sensors could be used not just for monitoring, ...In their current form, the researchers say the sensors could be used not just for monitoring, ...

Sustainability Problem

Global Health

Technology:

Scientists have developed tiny wireless sensors they call “neural dust”, which track nerve signals and muscles in real time, opening up a wide array of potential applications that range from checking internal organs to wirelessly controlling prosthetics with your mind.

http://newatlas.com/neural-dust-wellbeing-inside/44738/

  • University of California, Berkeley, have managed to squish sensors into 1 mm cubes around the size of a large grain of sand and implanted them into the muscles and peripheral nerves of rats.
  • These cubes house piezoelectric crystals that turn ultrasound vibrations (applied from outside the body) into electricity.
  • This provides a power source for a miniature onboard transistor that rests in contact with the nerve to measure electrical activity.
  • In their current form, the researchers say the sensors could be used outside the brain not just for monitoring, but also stimulating nerves and muscles to treat things like epilepsy, inflammation or fire up the immune system.
  • Eventually, they hope to develop tinier versions that can be packed into the brain, an advance that could mean big, big things.

 

Stakeholders:

  • Human Beings
  • Medical Community
  • Patients
  • Pharmaceutical Companies
  • Doctors
  • Electronics Industry

Implementation:

  • Test and clinical trial
  • Pilot program
  • Doctor education and socialization
  • Hospital implementation
  • Scale

Solar Ivy: Photovoltaic Leaves

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Energy:  Buildings are responsible for an enormous amount of global energy use, but solar energy is a readily accessible source of electricity generation. Solar panels, depending on the design and context of a structure, may not always be an option for curbing energy consumption from fossil fuels.

Technology Summary

Article – ‘Solar Ivy’ Photovoltaic Leaves Climb to New Heights http://inhabitat.com/solar-ivy-photovoltaic-leaves-climb-to-new-heights/

  • Designed by Brooklyn based SMIT (Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology)
  • Thin-film material on top of polyethylene with a piezoelectric generator attached to each leaf.
  • Wind and solar power generating photovoltaic leaves can be easily integrated on the side of a building to produce energy
  • When the sun is shining or the wind is blowing, energy is being generated via Solar Ivy.
  • Easily mounted on a vertical wall due to its light weight.

Light-sourcing leaves move around and catch the sun from many directions

Render

Organizational Stakeholders

Potential Stakeholders include:

  • Architect/Designers
  • Product Manufacturers
  • Building Operators/Owners
  • Energy Industry

LEAVES_2

Deployment

The next three stages in deploying this technology could be:

  • Coordinate installations displaying viability of technology to investors/shareholders.
  • Forge partnerships with institutions, agencies, and building companies to secure funding
  • Expand scope and application of technology to maximize relevancy in marketplace.

LEAVES.jpg

See also:

http://www.usgbc.org/articles/green-building-facts Building Energy Consumption

http://inhabitat.com/smits-grow2-project-new-solar-and-wind-solutions/ Photovoltaic Leaves

 

 

Dow Chemical: Influencing Sustainability at the Rio Olympics

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Sustainability Problem

The 2016 Rio Olympics which officially begin tomorrow are not without controversy with concerns over air quality and pollution in the waterways where athletes will compete in aquatic events such as rowing. The Dow Chemical Company is partnering with the Olympic Games for a series of projects in an effort to offset the carbon footprint of the games.

Technology:

One of the carbon mitigation projects that Dow Chemical has introduced for the Rio Olympics is microfoam packaging technology that will be implemented with Latin American based manufacturers. The microfoam packaging is geared for the food industry but could also be applied in other areas such as cosmetics and cleaning products. The microfoam process allows for reduction in weight for plastic films and allows for more packaging material to be produced from the same inputs and a more sustainable profile overall.

Stakeholders:

  • Dow Chemical
  • Olympic officials
  • Food manufacturers
  • Packaging industry

Implementation:

  • Incorporated into the Rio 2016 carbon mitigation strategy
  • Local manufacturers in Latin America will partner with Dow to produce the packaging
  • External partners will quantify and verify the carbon emissions offset by this process

Sources:

http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/packaging/sustainable_brands/dows_new_microfoam_packaging_technology_help_lessen_impa

https://www.rio2016.com/en/news/rio-2016-leave-a-legacy-of-low-carbon-emissions

http://cen.acs.org/articles/94/i32/Rio-Olympics-teams-Dow-leave.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+cen_latestnews+(Chemical+%26+Engineering+News%3A+Latest+News)

Plastic Pouches & Coffee Cups Ready for Recycling

nextek-simplycups-ashortwalk_coffee-cup-tray_635

1: New Resin made out of paper coffee cups Technology

  • Manufactured by  AShortWalk a new resin which is 40% stronger than conventional practice and made out of non-recyclable paper cups
  • Resin can be molded into other products at high speeds
  • Resin aims for a 50:50 ratio of paper to plastic
  • by products such as plastic lids and straws can be added to the mix to create the resin

2. Problem Technology is Solving

  • 7 million single use coffee cups are thrown out each day in the UK alone
  • challenging to recycle because the cup is made out of a paper and plastic mix
  • Cannot be recycled by ordinary paper waste process
  • Most recycling facilities are not equipped to do this

3. Technology Stakeholders

  • AShortWalk
  • Nextek
  • Imperial College London
  • Companies such as Starbucks, Costa, and McDonalds
  • Consumers of to-go hot beverages
  • Simply Cups

4.  Implementing Technology

  • Small scale role out with one of the companies that would be a seller of these hot beverages (i.e. Starbucks)
  • Develop and build a recycling plant that would exclusively focus on this type of product re-purposing (plastic+paper to make resin)
  • Full country role out in the UK with all major companies in the industry
  • Potential for legislation to get involved upon successful implementation of the technology to the mass market

Article: http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/packaging/hannah_furlong/trending_flexible_plastic_pouches_coffee_cups_are_ready_recy

 

Organic mega flow battery

Sustainability Problem

Depleting fossil fuels and its consequent  environmental impacts on climate change means alternative sources of energy need to be found, and soon.

Technology

The organic mega flow battery is an economically feasible option for storing  energy. This is particularly useful for renewable technologies such as solar power and wind power which rely on sunlight and wind power. Essentially, the flow battery stores the excess energy generated from these technologies and is available when either sunlight or wind is unavailable. They are much more efficient than the traditional batteries used to store energy from wind and solar power.

Stakeholders

  • Energy companies and consultants
  • Energy consumers
  • Investors
  • Government

Implementation

  1. Conduct a pilot test and use it to complement one of the ongoing solar projects in a region- possibly Africa (Tanzania) which has abundant solar projects.
  2. Collect data analytics and present data in energy conferences to attract investors
  3. Collaborate with city governments and implement with an upcoming Smart City project.

Reference

http://www.seas.harvard.edu/news/2014/01/organic-mega-flow-battery-promises-breakthrough-for-renewable-energy