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

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Osmotic Power: A new source of clean energy

Sustainability Problem

The impacts of climate change are clearly visible in this day and age. Rising temperatures as a result of CO2 emissions from fossil fuels such as oil, coal and natural gas will only add to this problem.

Sustainable Technology

Researchers have developed a system that generates electricity from osmosis with unparalleled efficiency using seawater, fresh water, and a new type of membrane just 3 atoms thick.  A 1 m² membrane with 30% of its surface covered by nanopores should be able to produce 1MW of electricity. This is enough to power 50,000 standard energy-saving light bulbs.

Stakeholders

  • Investors
  • NGO’s
  • Electricity generation companies
  • Government

Implementation

  1. The effectiveness of this clean energy method has only been implemented on a small scale. The next phase would be to identify potential investors by attending energy efficient conferences.
  2. Identify a electricity generation company that is transition towards the usage of clean energy. Conduct a 6 month trial period during which time staff go the electricity generation company are trained. Provide workshops to further educate the employees in the company.
  3. Once the effectiveness of osmotic power as a means of clean energy is more apparent to the general public, continue to seek out more investors to increase large-scale implementation.

Reference

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/07/160713143004.htm

Home battery for self consumption-sonnenBatterian

1. Sustainability Problem

Dependance on fossil fuel to generate electricity is a global issue that needs to be addressed, considering the high rate of depletion as well as the impact on climate change.

2. Technology

The German battery company Sonnet launched a home battery for self consumption at a 40% reduced cost. The battery is basically an “eco pack” that is designed to maximise on-site solar consumption in markets where net metering is being phased out. The sonnenBatterien can optimise the energy supply and demand to such a degree that an integration of 100% renewable energy within a community is possible – 24/7. This will reduce dependance on fossil fuels and improve air quality.

3. Stakeholders

  • Clean energy providers
  • Residents
  • Businesses
  • NGO
  • Government

4. Deployment

  • Extensive testing of the product in households. Additionally integrate into businesses to see how well it fits into large systems. Report on costs saved and amount of fossil fuel consumption reduction.
  • Once data on this has been publicised, continue increasing awareness of product by attending energy efficiency conferences.
  • Current pricing of installing is quite high, therefore partnering with another company  with similar interests may be in the best interest at the beginning phase of implementation. This will allow you to minimise risks as well as provide a temporary financial cushion when installation prices are reduced.

 

http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Sonnen-Launches-a-Home-Battery-for-Self-Consumption-at-a-40-Reduced

 

Clothing that wirelessly charges your phone

1.Sustainability Problem

Energy production through the usage of fossil fuels is an issue which needs to be addressed, especially with its remaining lifespan and consequent impacts on climate change. The clothing acts as a mobile charging station which is more energy efficient in terms of recharging a phone to full battery (takes on average 2 hours for full charge) and does not rely on fossil fuels.

2) The technology

The rechargeable clothing was founded by a startup in Seattle called Baubax. The clothing, which is machine washable, has copper wire built into it and a wireless charging pad that’s stitched inside a pocket. The power source is a battery bank, which is conveniently sized to fit in a wallet. Up to 3 charges can be made before the battery pack is to recharged. Additionally, once the phone has become fully charged, it will automatically stop distributing energy to the phone , ensuring energy efficiency. Additionally it can charge multiple electrical devices at the same time, including smartwatches.

3) Stakeholders

  • Customers
  • Investors
  • NGO’s
  • Businesses interested in energy efficiency

4) Implementation

  • Continue pilot testing of the product for 6-12 months. Garner support from health organisations showing there are no side effects to charging phones via this method.
  • Release data on energy saved annually through this method in relation to the customary plug-in to wall.
  • Partner with a leading clothing line interested in energy conservation. Provide discount incentives for installion of the product in the clothing for the first one year. If demand surpasses expectations, then create a contract whereby both parties benefit.
  • Attend energy conferences to increase awareness of the product and attract new potential investors.

5) Reference

http://money.cnn.com/2016/06/28/technology/baubax-wireless-charging-clothing-kickstarter/index.html

Cleanup technology rids oil from water

Sustainable Technology: Researchers of Perdue University have developed a  sponge material comprised of melamine sponges, a porous material, which repels water while allowing oil to be absorbed into the sponge. Additional to oil cleanup, the sponge can clean any pollutant that is immiscible with water and which has low surface tension.

1.Sustainablilty Problem

Water pollution is a global issue, both to human health and the environment. There is a global trend whereby as population increases there is usually a result in degradation of environment and its services. This method has the potential to assist in cleanup of oil spillages from industrial sources. The absorbent material with high selectivity of oils is effective in removing pollutants from contaminated water sources.

2. Stakeholders

  • NGO’s
  • Government agencies
  • Research Scientists
  • Industry managers i.e. oil companies
  • Citizens

3. Implementation

  • Partner with a relevant industry i.e. one which releases pollutants into waterways (possibly in a developing nation), a conduct a pilot study to gather data on effectiveness. Compare previous water quality assessments to after implementation.
  • Attend fairs and conferences relevant to clean water efficiency, to garner support and increase awareness.
  • Streamline production to create absorbent material in bulk and provide incentives to purchasing the product i.e. develop PPP with local city government such that businesses which incorporate this cleanup method into their daily operations can benefit from tax breaks or discounted government land purchases in future.

4. Reference

http://phys.org/news/2016-04-environmental-cleanup-technology-oil.html

 

 

 

Hybrid-Flywheel Energy Storage Plant

1. Technology

The hybrid-flywheel energy storage is the first grid-connected flywheel project in Europe, with its first operation in Ireland. SchwungradEnergie Limited is behind the project.  It is a 100% clean power source and has no direct fuel use or related emissions. It absorbs power, stores it and releases energy according to any grid requirements to rapidly inject energy, making it a flexible approach. Unlike a power plant, it operates as a shock absorber and dynamic energy support system.

2. Sustainability Problem

The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates on average 6% of the electricity  during  transmission and distribution is lost annually. In 2015, 67% of electricity generated was from fossil fuels. With the depletion of such non-renewable resources, energy efficiency is imperative in at least prolonging their longevity until an alternative approach is found. The hybrid-flywheel is essentially an energy storage system- which releases energy to the grid when required, thereby improving efficient in both distribution and transmission.

3. Stakeholders

-City government and energy department officials

-Private investors of clean energy

-Engineers, energy consultants

4. Implementation

  • Ireland can be thought of as the pilot testing site since it is the first of its kind. Collect data for a period of 6 months to 1 year and publish data, making it visible to foreign investors.
  • To further increase awareness of the product, attend regional and global energy efficiency fairs and events.
  • Develop partnership with government officials (PPP’s) of growing smart cities and provide incentives (free 1 year maintenance/ consulting/ installation) to integrate it into the smart city electricity grid.

5. Reference

First Hybrid-Flywheel Energy Storage Plant Announced For Europe

 

Energy Harvesting Tiles

Founded by Pavegen, it was initially introduced as a singular tile, which converts the energy of a footstep into electricity, and can be stored for later use or used directly by mobile devices and building management systems. However, the company has evolved from its singular tiles of generating electricity to including three multi-functional component parts (floor, data, and energy). This will serve two components in driving data-driven smart cities; (1) Reduce dependancy on depleting natural resources to generate electricity; and (2) The multi-functional component will allow footsteps and movements of crowds to be monitored, providing real-time data and assisting in optimising space and floor management.

Sustainability Issue

In 2015, the United States generated about 4 trillion kilowatthours of electricity.  About 67% of the electricity generated was from fossil fuels. By 2040,  U.S’s electricity power requirements will grow by 30%. Energy harvesting technologies from road infrastructure and sidewalks  serves as a promising technique to addressing the global energy problem without depleting natural resources.

By 2015, 54% of the world’s population live in cities and it’s expected to reach 66% by 2050.   As the world population becomes increasingly urbanised, city planners must plan accordingly to improve living standards of inhabitants by ensuring city infrastructures such as public transportation do not become saturated. Hence, a data-driven approach will be crucial in developing transportation schedules to accommodate individuals during peak hours. Pavegen’s multi-functional tiles provide real-time data movement analytics of crowd sizes, allowing the city transportation department to plan accordingly.

Issue: Energy, natural resource dependancy

Technology Stakeholders

-Urban Planners, Architects, Engineers

-Local Government

-City dwellers, Residents

-Investors

-Municipal, city department i.e transportation, electricity

Technology Implementation

-Initially, to create awareness of the product, Pavegen installed the tiles at the finish line of the Paris Marathon. The company must continue to create awareness by initiating a pilot test in a smaller city  to entice investors. If initially investment is lacking to conduct the pilot test, a possible solution would be to create some form of agreement with the local government, possibly price reduction or 1 year free consultation/maintenance. Conduct the pilot survey for a period of 6 months to 1 year, recording data on energy saved and fossil fuel consumption. Finally, publicise findings ( if supporting of course) over media and other social networks to increase awareness and interest investors.

-To fully integrate Pavegen’s multi-functional tiles and create a noticeable large-scale impact ( in terms of energy saved/annum, and fossil fuel consumption), it will require the collaboration various stakeholders including the transportation department, city-planners and private businesses. Hence, building Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) will be crucial in successfully executing this scheme. Creating transparency, especially during the preliminary decision-making phase in the allocation of tiles will be important, to ensure most, if not all, stakeholder interests are considered and satisfied.

-Once the tiles have been installed, provide training to city department workers for addressing maintenance issues. Alternatively, due to its relatively new entrance into the technology market, provide one-year free maintenance and training to city staff.

Sources

http://web.archive.org/web/20141226025807/http://www.scientificamerican.com:80/article/pavement-pounders-at-paris-marathon-generate-power/

http://www.pavegen.com/philosophy/

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/where-will-the-us-get-its-electricity-in-future/

https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=427&t=3