Tracking Tech Drives Dayton, Ohio’s Recycling Incentive Program

 Problem:

Garbage has a high economic and environmental cost and burdens local municipalities. Increasing recycling rates can ease both the environmental impact of “landfilling” and the cost borne by municipalities.

Opportunity:

  1. Dayton, Ohio, recently launched an incentive-based  recycling program for residents that is made possible by radio frequency identification (RFID) tags affixed onto recycling bins and asset tracking software.
  2. The program offers cash prices to encourage recycling.
  3. To select winners, the city randomly chooses four recycling bins each month that are tagged with RFID. The RFID tags placed on the recycling bins store the address of the resident using the bin as well as an identification number. The data are transmitted through a special antenna installed on each garbage truck. The RFID hardware and information are integrated into an “asset tracking platform” that helps Dayton officials plan recycling pickup routes, schedules, budgets and usage rates.
  4. Their goal is to double the amount of material recycled to 1,000 tons monthly. That would represent a $250,000 a year savings.
  5. To purchase the technology and 10,000 recycling bins, Dayton spent $500,000 in federal stimulus funds.
  6. Other cities, like Laurel, MD use RFID to identify residents who don’t recycle and work with them to comply through warnings and tickets.

RDFI RFID TAG ON BIN

Stakeholders:

  1. Elected officials
  2. Department of Public Works/Sanitation
  3. Residents

Implementation:

  1. Vision and leadership to implement
  2. Funding
  3. Communication to drive resident participation

http://www.govtech.com/technology/Tracking-Tech-Drives-Dayton-Ohio-Recycling-Incentive-Program.html

http://www.govtech.com/e-government/RFID-Tags-on-Recycle-Bins-Help.html

J Hamerman

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Distributed technique for power ‘scheduling’ advances smart grid concept

Problem

Power plants around the country use a centralized scheduling approach to forecast and distribute energy. This centralized approach does not support the integration of renewable energy systems and battery storage systems.  The rise of on-site energy storage technologies makes centralized scheduling calculations significantly more complex.

Opportunity:

  1. Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a new technique for scheduling energy in electric grids that moves away from centralized management by tapping into the distributed computing power of energy devices.
  2. By having each device communicate with its immediate neighbors, the device can calculate and schedule how much energy it will need to store, how much to contribute to the network, and how much to draw from the network. In this way, the program can determine the optimal schedule for the entire grid.
  3. Distributed computing seeks to replace the traditional control center with a decentralized approach. This approach advances the smart grid concept by coordinating the energy being produced and stored by both conventional and renewable sources.
  4. The technology has been validated in simulations, and the researchers are in the process of implementing it in an experimental smart grid system at the National Science Foundation FREEDM Systems Center on NC State’s campus. They expect to have results in 2016.

Stakeholders:

  1. Utilities
  2. Government and government regulators of utilities
  3. Alternative energy and battery storage companies

Implementation:

  1. Distribute paper for peer review
  2. Get data from multiple tests and report out results
  3. Pilot large-scale demonstrations
  4. Gain industry acceptance and scale usage

https://news.ncsu.edu/2015/06/chow-distributed-2015/

 

Wastewater Disinfection And Energy Generation Make ‘Hot’ Couple

Problem: Municipal wastewater treatment facilities are extremely energy-intensive and costly to operate and maintain. Traditional systems use UV or chorine chemicals to treat the wastewater.

 

Diagram-e1344625272782

Considerations:

1. The Pasteurization Technology Group (PTG) has developed a patented “two-for one” technology that  combines renewable energy generation with wastewater disinfection technologies.

2. Their system uses biogas, a natural byproduct of wastewater treatment to drive a turbine that generates renewable energy. About 30 percent of the energy created by the turbine generates electricity while the waste heat is passed through a waste heat recovery unit (CHP) to increase the temperature  of the wastewater to around 165 degrees to disinfect water.  Heat has always been an effective way to disinfect water, but the high expense of traditional heating methods prevented it from being an accepted alternative to UV or chorine.

3. This process has met the standards set by California for disinfection of water for reuse.

4.  The system’s software allows off-site control.

5. In addition to waste water treatment, this technology can be used in water- and energy-intensive commercial industries including agriculture, beer, and beverage and food processing.

6. The company claims significant cost and energy savings in addition to environmental benefits from reduced chemical treatment.

7. PTG has won numerous awards including the Water Environment Federation (WEF) Innovative Technology Award, the Katerva Award, the Artemis Top 50 Water Tech award.

Stakeholders:

1. Municipalities charged with waste water treatment.

2. Water and energy-intensive commercial companies.

3. Government regulators, policy makers, and planners.

Implementation:

1. Proof of concept through rigorous testing of the systems culminating in white papers and case studies.

2. Targeting of municipalities and commercial customers.

3.  Integration of other technologies to push down costs and chemical and energy use.

Http://www.wateronline.com/doc/wastewater-disinfection-and-energy-generation-make-hot-couple-0001 and website at http://www.pastechgroup.com/\

Jean Hamerman

New Vaccine Delivery Method Eliminates Need for Syringes, Needles

Problem:  The imperative of getting people life-saving vaccines faces daunting practical challenges including distribution, cold chain requirements and need for medical staff to administer the vaccines.  There are the secondary challenges of used medical needles including millions of infections like Hepatitis B and AIDS and the significant environmental waste from billions of syringes and needles.

bionaaldje-300x255

Main ideas:
1. A company based in the Netherlands, Bioneedle,  has invented a new vaccine delivery system that may ultimately provide a new and safe alternative vaccination system.
2. At its core, the Bioneedle technology is a hollow, polymer needle-shaped mini-implant.  When inserted, the polymer degrades, dissolves  beneath the skin and releases  the vaccine.
3.  It is inserted at  high speeds using a compressed air driven Bioneedle Applicator- pain-free and safely. There is NO waste.
4. The Bioneedle is “therm stable” thereby eliminating the onerous need to maintain vaccines at specific temperatures to keep stable.
5. The environmental benefits are enormous in both waste and energy savings.
6. As opposed to traditional vaccines, bioneedles can be given to more  than thousand people per hour by non-medical staff.
Although in the early stages of development, Bioneedle was the winner of the  2012 Katerva Award.

Organizational Stakeholders:
1.  World Health organizations/foundations. This would be a transformative technology that would extend vaccinations to millions of underserved people.
2. Doctors/clinics.  In addition to reaching more people, the health and environmental aspects of having no needle or syringe waste is a game-changer.
3. General public. Bioneedles is especially needed in third world countries /rural areas where doctors are not available and the “cold chain” to preserve vaccines may be comprised.

Implementation:
1. Prove out the technology through pilots and other mechanisms.
2.  Production of vaccines.
3. Distribution and training.   Scale the model to maximize benefits.

http://www.earth911.com/living-well-being/health/zero-waste-vaccine-bioneedles/ and website at http://www.bioneedle.com (I needed to get information from the website to more fully explore this breakthrough application).

Jean Hamerman

Wearable Devices to Prevent Sunburn

Health/Safety:  People know they should wear sunscreen to protect themselves from the sun, which burns, ages and wrinkles our skin and contributes to over 3.5 million cases of skin cancer each year.

Main Points:

  1. There are several new wearable devices- from Fitbit-style bracelets to other jewelry- that track your exposure to the sun and help with sun protection options.
  2. The first on the market, JUNE, can be worn as a bracelet or a brooch to monitor sun exposure throughout the day. Containing UV sensors and an iOS app, it reports on how much exposure you have gotten, the risk of UV radiation on a scale from 0 to 15 and lets you know to put on a hat or reapply sun screen.
  3. Lower tech or more affordable options include bands, stickers, and Smartphone apps with precautions and alarms.
  4. The challenge remains getting people to use sun protection – app or no app. Studies have shown electronic reminders to apply sunscreen as having mixed success.

JUNE bracelet

Stakeholders:

  1. Corporations designing and producing the devices.
  2. People exposed to the sun. This is a huge population and device makers will need to segment the market and target early adaptors and people at risk.
  3. Public health organizations and the medical profession. Due to the cost in treating skin cancer and related medical issues, the government and the medical profession have an interest in educating people about the risks of prolonged UV exposure and skin care.

Implementation:

  1. Technical developments/product enhancements and production of the devices.
  2. Market distribution for broad retail access.
  3. Marketing/education. Information about the devices, how they work, and the benefits to be widely distributed to promote sales and change behaviors.

Link to the article: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/06/16/wearable-devices-to-prevent-sunburn/?_r=0

Jean Hamerman