Power From The Body

Power from the body

Obtaining power from the human body may sound like a crazy idea, but scientists have started to take this idea seriously. There are various ways one can obtain power from the body such as heat, body movement and vibrations metabolism. One obvious form of energy harvesting is using well known piezo-electricity technology, which means converting human movements and vibrations into electricity. Researchers from the University of Michigan have developed a prototype using piezoelectricty to charge pacemakers installed in human hearts. Generally, pacemakers are introduced to do the work of the heart which has become weak but patients face many and regular… read more

Top Young Scientist Award

Polluted water

Brilliant minds are not limited by age and neither is caring for others. The top young scientist has been crowned for 2012. The 14-year-old school student from New Hampshire, Deepika Kurup, was named “America’s Top Young Scientist” for inventing a solar-powered water jug that has the ability to change dirty water into a purified drinking water. Deepika Kurup did not only surpass 9 other finalists with her science and math skills to win $25,000 from Discovery Education and 3M. Kurup persuaded the judges with a fantastic five minute long, live presentation about the difficulty of a billion less fortunate people… read more

LifeStraw Saves Lives

LifeStraw purification method

The “LifeStraw” is an invention that could become one of the greatest life-savers in history. LifeStraw is a portable water purification instrument that cleanses surface water and makes it safe for human consumption.  It is a 25 cm long, 29 mm diameter, plastic pipe filter and costs just a few dollars. The original idea was created years ago by Torben Vestergaard Frandsen, but over the years in partnership with The Carter Center and others, the Lifestraw has made clean water a possibility to many. Millions of people die every year because they don’t have clean water to drink. Until now,… read more

Human Powered Taxis

velotaxi

Bicycling is a well established form of solitary transportation (excluding tandem bikes), but what if human powered vehicles became a mainstream form of public transportation? Whether that day will come to fruition within our lifetime or not, the vision has already been set in motion as, in 1997, the first Velotaxi was authorized to operate in Berlin. Velotaxis are human powered taxi cabs of aerodynamic design that allow passengers to travel anywhere within a city without the use of fuel. To companies, Velotaxis also function as mobile advertisements, as cabs are decked out to match the current product or campaign… read more

Auto-Tinting Windows

View W Hotel SF 5

A startup in Silicon Valley has unveiled a smart window which promises green and energy efficient building in the future. Soladigm (formally called “View”) officially introduced its flagship product auto-tinting window system, which will be displayed to the public at the Greenbuild conference in San Francisco. Previously there have been many attempts to make windows that can change color just like a chameleon in order to adjust light and temperature indoors but these glass products are rarely manufactured and used. The product is basically an electro-chromatic glass which is highly durable and provides a reasonable payback on energy reductions and… read more

Refrigerator Recycling

refrigerator-recycle

Some important household appliances like refrigerators and air conditioners are now considered to be dangerous because they contain coolants that can contaminate almost everything from air to soil. These appliances are gods in the home but they become demons when they are thrown out. Disposal of these appliances is similar to nuclear disposal – which requires care and attention. Recycling these appliances is hard because one has to carefully remove the usable part of the appliance without releasing the harmful substance. Appliance Recycling Centers of America (ARCA) and GE has come up with a recycling technology which efficiently recycles these refrigerators…. read more

Social Media Saving Energy

Sharing bills on Facebook

Social media has changed the lifestyle of humans recently. The way people share and communicate has changed a lot since dark blue (I mean Facebook) and light blue (I mean Twitter) invaded our lives. Integration of life with these media outlets has become tighter than yesteryears and as a result a company has rightly taken a smart and productive initiative which makes use of this generation “sharing” technology. Opower, a U.S based company has created a platform where people can track their electricity use and share this information with their friends. This app can be logged in directly with a… read more

Eggshell Storage

Eggshells for energy

Mitlin, a professor of chemical and materials engineering at the University of Alberta, Canada is working on a way to turn waste eggshell membranes and egg whites into materials for high-performance supercapacitors. Supercapacitors are devices which offer many “need-of-the-hour” features like high power density, charging and discharging which are generally faster than regular rechargeable batteries. But unfortunately they store much less energy. Mitlin thinks the membranes inside eggshells could help crack this problem. “If you could keep the very nice power of a supercapcitor but extend the energy density even to be that of a mediocre lithium-ion battery, you’d really… read more

The Race into Space

Space travel

During the early 2000’s, unbeknownst to the general public, the next great space race was taking place. Companies such as Richard Branson’s ‘Virgin Galactic’, Jeff Bezos’ ‘Blue Origin’, and Elon Musk’s ‘Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) were all vying for a long-term contract with NASA. The United States space program had long decided to retire their fleet of Space Shuttles, and replace them with a yet-to-be-created transportation system in between 2010 and 2020. Thus competition between these private industry space moguls began. Virgin Galactic made its historic private flight into space in 2004, and the race was on. In 2012 SpaceX made… read more

Mission To Mars

Logo of the company Mars One

An ambitious project is currently underway that hopes to place a permanent colony on the Mars landscape by the year 2023. It’s called Mars One, and its purpose is to “establish the foundation of a permanent settlement from which we will prosper, learn, and grow.” The concept was first imagined in 2011 by Dutch entrepreneur, Bas Lansdorf. His dream of building a habitat on Mars is centered around the idea of the project becoming a reality show on the red planet, which would help fund the mission in its entirety through advertising revenue and sponsorship investments. In a promo video… read more