Tag Archives: power

Harvesting Energy from our Oceans

Energy harvesting from our surroundings has now taken on another leap forward from what is a limitless supply from our oceans. For all you sun worshippers out there living near the coast; in the not too distant future you may have your household electricity being supplied by clever power stations that extract the energy stored from your local sun bathed surf.

Hawaii’s new OTEC power plant harvests energy stored in warm ocean water;

The OTEC plant cost $5 million to build and is the world’s largest power plant using this renewable and clean energy source. The project was funded and developed through a jont venture between Hawaii’s Makai Ocean Engineering, the U.S. Navy’s Office of Naval Research, and the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) at the University of Hawaii.

It’s new technology enables  thermal energy using the temperature differential between warm surface water and deep sea cold water to turn a turbine that is used to generate electricity. As it relies on surface heating from sunlight, the supply of ocean thermal energy is practically limitless, especially in sub tropical areas where the ocean’s sea water warms up rapidly. Similar to a fossil fuel plant, the OTEC system provides this energy in a steady supply that can be notched up or scaled back quickly in response to grid demand.

 

Whilst the inital investment to get this  innovation off the ground seems small in comparison to traditional grid stations Makai still face financial hurdles. They plan to develop a site in Japan and then hopefully the collective interest will enable further expansion on what is poised to be the next must have technology for clean renewable energy.

A fantastic business which could significantly reduce our fossil fuel emissions around the globe. And one topic I’d like to discuss in our forum.

 

To the next

 

Steve

Smartphones become Solar Panels

Transparent Batteries That Charge in the Sun Could Replace Smartphone Screens –

A group of smart Japanese techies  have managed to improve the design of a transparent lithium-ion battery so that it’s now able to recharge itself when exposed to sunlight without the need for a separate solar cell.

The transparent battery was first developed by the researchers, led by Kogakuin University president and professor Mitsunobu Sato, back in 2013. The electrolyte used for the battery’s positive electrode is made mostly from lithium iron phosphate, while the electrolytes used for the negative electrode include lithium titanate, and lithium hexafluorophosphate a stronger chemical bond at subatomic level.

Those are all common ingredients used in Li-ion rechargeable batteries, but the thickness of these electrodes are just 80 to 90 nanometers, which allows a lot of light to pass through and makes these batteries almost completely transparent. Imagine that! Where else could this technological discovery be applied.

But by changing the chemical makeup of the negative electrode, the Japanese researchers have found a way to make these transparent batteries now recharge themselves in the presence of sunlight, or other bright sources of illumination, say a lamp or street light.

This is important because future iterations of this battery could become smart mirrors for buildings and vehicles that can auto-dim when it’s bright outside during the heat of the day, but also store power as they’re recharged by the sun. And as an extension of that idea, one day your smartphone’s display might even serve as an additional battery, using sunlight to charge the device whenever you’re outside.

Harvesting energy is becoming more and more portable. Have any ideas to join in the discussion?

Whats the next disruptive vision that will enter the solar market place?

To the next

 

Steve

 

 

A Dutchman’s Daily commute …… Powered by the Wind

The Dutch Railway Could Run Solely on Wind Power By 2018 if Eneco gets their way

The Netherlands has a fantastic inspirational energy goal: The country wants its entire electric rail system to run on 100% wind power within three years.

Railway Technology reports that Dutch energy company Eneco and the VIVENS rail companies signed a deal to make Dutch electric trains within Netherlands Railways run entirely on energy produced by wind farms. Wind farms already supply half of the 1,800-mile, 1.5kV DC network’s energy—a network that carries over a million passengers a day.

The wind power will come from gusts blowing off the plains of the land of the Tulip, as well as their surrounding neighbours like  Belgium and some Scandinavian nations; part of the strategy is to promote increased renewable energy  in other European countries as well.

In the last few years, wind power has seen rapid growth worldwide. According to the IEC; International Energy Council, the land-based wind power installation rate has gone up around 24+% annually every year since 2000. The council predicts that if world governments stick to plan, wind power could account for 18% of all energy production globally.

Back in the Netherlands, Eneco says it also entered a 10-year deal with Google to make its data center in the northern part of the country totally powered by wind farm energy as well.

The reason this is important is because by proactively sticking your country’s head above the paraphet as they have done hopefully other countries will follow suit and join the programme.

In the UK they are planning for the first time a matrix of offshore  Wind Power networks Round 3, released in 2010 is the biggest so far and features nine zones across the UK. The largest, Dogger Bank, has the potential to generate up to 13GW of power and is one of the largest energy projects anywhere in the world. Round 3 is set to enter construction from this year onwards and has a total of more than 24GW already leased to developers.

Do you have ideas for harvesting wind power?

Lets discuss …come and sign up.

To your success

Steve