Extraordinary ‘British Pompeii’ settlement was preserved in water for 3,000 years

July 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on Extraordinary ‘British Pompeii’ settlement was preserved in water for 3,000 years

The Cambridge Archaeological Unit is excavating Must Farm , a well-preserved British site that has provided a glimpse into daily life during the Bronze Age. Described as ‘ British Pompeii ,’ Must Farm was destroyed quickly and its buildings sank into water, where the settlement was preserved for the next 3,000 years or so. Now archaeologists are finding everything from textiles to food to a wheel, and describe the site as home to ” an extraordinarily rich range of good and objects .” The excavation at Must Farm is funded by Forterra and Historic England and supported by the University of Cambridge . Like Pompeii, the story of the Must Farm inhabitants ends in tragedy. Because the site is so well-preserved, archaeologists have many clues to piece together what likely happened. Related: UK resident accidentally discovers ancient Anglo-Saxon settlement The Must Farm locals built round homes on stilts above a river. There were about 10 of these wooden homes, and about 30 people lived there. Archaeologists can tell that the oak trees utilized in the homes were cut down in the winter, and the next summer, the entire settlement burned down rapidly in an inferno. Forensic research appears to indicate the fire may have been set on purpose before the residents were able to truly establish their settlement. The remains of the houses and the possessions that fell into the river and river silt were preserved in the fens. It appears any survivors may have had to flee given how many possessions were left behind. Archaeologists have found axes, spears, 60 beads (that could have come from Turkey or Syria), linen fragments, and even footprints. There were no skeletons other than a skull that had likely been hung as a trophy on one of the homes. Site manager Mark Knight told CNN, “I think I’ve found a landscape that has a story; a landscape that hasn’t been described before, hasn’t been visited before. We are the first people to explore it.” Via CNN Images via Must Farm Archaeology Facebook

Read the rest here: 
Extraordinary ‘British Pompeii’ settlement was preserved in water for 3,000 years

A tiny beach shack in Essex wrapped in "magic" cork panels

July 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on A tiny beach shack in Essex wrapped in "magic" cork panels

The artist couple who commissioned the design, which replaces a “dilapidated timber framed 1920s beach house”, wanted a weekend home that would “surpass planning requirements in terms of flood risk mitigation, building control requirements in terms of part L, and expectations in terms of design innovation,” Lisa Shell told Inhabitat. She designed the home to resemble a “hide” that provides the residents with “privacy, peace, and a sense of isolation and distance.” But it also had to overcome a few site challenges – including floods that recently swathed the area in a meter of water, according to The Guardian . Related: Amazing hairdryer made with glass and cork Elevated on red steel stilts like a Redshank wader, the home is constructed in CLT with a 180mm thick expanded cork agglomerate overcoat. The cork panels are created from the by-product of wine cork production in Portugal, according to Shell, using only heat and compression to form a chemical bond between cork chips. Unusually, the designers decided not to apply a polyurethane coating to the panels, resulting in a bleached grey color facade with black flecks. An airtight enclosure, Redshank is heated with a small wood burning stove – reducing the energy required to keep the space warm. The new house increases the amount of land available to fauna and flora within the Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). “Within two months of completion, sparrows have already taken up residence in one of the integrated nesting boxes,” writes Shell. “It was also important that support was won for the unconventional design from the community of both permanent and occasional residents in the small hamlet.” + Lisa Shell Architects

See more here: 
A tiny beach shack in Essex wrapped in "magic" cork panels

BeCool HVAC system generates clean energy while keeping your house cool

July 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

Comments Off on BeCool HVAC system generates clean energy while keeping your house cool

Most air conditioning units are energy hogs that can send an electric bill sky high, often leading people to limit their use. A new device called BeCool cools (or heats) the air while charging up a fuel cell at the same time , could transform the whole approach to indoor climate control by generating electricity rather than just sucking it up. The invention comes from Be Power Tech , a startup based in Florida, where air conditioning is not just a luxury, but also a lifesaver. https://vimeo.com/165074817 Instead of plugging into the grid for its power source, Be Power Tech’s BeCool commercial HVAC unit runs on natural gas . Where the individual unit is considered, the result is a more energy efficient air conditioning system. If more people relied on natural gas-based air conditioners, some of the strain on the power grid would be alleviated during peak times of usage, such as during a heat wave or simply at that point in mid-afternoon when the day’s heat reaches its apex. Related: Infographic shows surprising trends in summer energy usage across the United States The BeCool system is a roof-mounted unit that directly replaces standard 10-ton air conditioning systems, and the company will begin field trials on commercial units in 2017, expecting to hit the market the following year. The system relies on evaporative cooling technology developed at National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and licensed by the Florida company exclusively. The system promises to reduce energy costs by 67 percent or more, with a 70 percent reduction in peak time usage. BeCool, which is also capable of functioning as a heating unit, is also an environmentally friendly system. Its inventors claim installing one of their HVAC units is the equivalent of removing five cars from the road, due to the reduction in emissions gained both by fueling the unit with natural gas and by its clean energy generation. Via Scientific American Images via Be Power Tech

Read the original post: 
BeCool HVAC system generates clean energy while keeping your house cool

New 3D solar cells capture sunlight from every angle

July 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

Comments Off on New 3D solar cells capture sunlight from every angle

Georgia Tech scientists developed three-dimensional solar cells which just hitched a ride to space this week on a SpaceX rocket. At the International Space Station , the solar cells will be tested to see how well they function and how they respond to space conditions. The solar cells have been designed to capture the sun’s rays from every angle, which could enable spacecraft to gain more power from a limited surface area. The experimental module blasted into space includes four different types of solar cells. One type is a “traditional planar” solar cell, and a second is a planar cell based on a formulation of low-cost materials: copper-zinc-tin-sulfide (CZTS). These materials cost about ” a thousand times less than the rare-earth elements ” like selenium and indium used in some solar cells. There are also two types of 3-D solar cells: one “based on CZTS” and the other “based on conventional cadmium telluride.” There are 18 solar cells total, and they will be tested in space for six months. Related: 2,500 orbiting solar “flying carpets” could power the planet 3-D solar cells could forever alter the way spacecrafts receive power. The Georgia Tech solar cells are described as miniature “towers” coated with a “photo-absorber.” Instead of requiring the sun to be right above them to work, the innovative 3-D solar cells can capture sunlight over longer periods of time. Georgia Tech Research Institute principal research engineer Jud Ready said in a press release , “We want to see both the light-trapping performance of our 3-D solar cells and how they are going to respond to the harshness of space.” After six months, the solar cells will return to Earth so scientists can study how they held up in space. According to Ready, “If it can survive in space, which is the harshest of environments from the standpoint of wide temperature swings, radiation, and numerous other factors, then we can be confident it will work well down on Earth.” Via Phys.org Images via Gary Meek, Georgia Tech

Go here to see the original: 
New 3D solar cells capture sunlight from every angle

Giant gold spot draped over this building will catch the eye of anyone flying into Seoul

July 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on Giant gold spot draped over this building will catch the eye of anyone flying into Seoul

Created in partnership with Gansam Architects , Paradise City will comprise two buildings: the 3,600-square-meter Sandbox retail complex and the 6,200-square-meter Nightclub. The project will serve as the centerpiece of a new tourist hub for the Korean capital. Rather than insert two conventionally styled buildings, the architects designed two concrete monolithic forms that are distorted and manipulated to respond to the surrounding environment and take on a more fluid, rippled form. Related: South Korea Unveils Plans for Sustainable Mini-City in World’s Best Airport “The project takes two simple volumes, which create a new urban space. These masses then take an imprint of the facades around the site, stretching over the two buildings. Thus adapting themselves to the given environment, accepting these conditions as a sine qua non,” says MVRDV co-founder Winy Maas . “The buildings are opened by lifting them like a curtain, unravelling their interior. Then, to top it off is the golden spot, marking the entrance like a sunbeam, making its presence known even from the air and the landing planes at Incheon airport.” The project is expected to be completed in time for the 2018 winter Olympic games and will have a direct mono-rail connection to Incheon airport. + MVRDV Images via MVRDV

See original here: 
Giant gold spot draped over this building will catch the eye of anyone flying into Seoul

Flame-colored NOAA map paints a picture of this week’s toasty heat wave

July 20, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on Flame-colored NOAA map paints a picture of this week’s toasty heat wave

Nobody needs a news report to know that summer is hot, but we’re in the midst of a particular scorcher. Scientists like to create visualizations to convey the full impact of natural phenomenon, such as heat waves, and this one from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reveals—in bright, flaming hues—what may be in store for the continental United States this week. The heat map was created using predicted high temperatures across the country , painting one toasty picture for the days ahead. Data from NOAA’s HRRR Model was compiled to create a map that shows the predicted high temperatures on July 18, 2016 at 5 p.m. EDT. The map is essentially a snapshot of the dawn of the  heat wave that is expected to last through the week. The heat wave is expected to be severe, as a “heat dome” created by a high pressure ridge and extreme temperatures will trap and intensify heat in several places across the U.S. Related: Lethal extreme heat and wildfires scorch the American Southwest The forecast calls for heat index values to reach 110 degrees or higher in some areas of the country. The National Weather Service issued heat alerts for more than a dozen cities in light of the soaring temps . A quick glance at this brightly colored heat map is slightly terrifying, but a slightly longer gaze will allow enough time for the realization that this is only the beginning, and there is a great deal of summer left to endure before temperatures will ease back to more comfortable levels. Via Gizmodo Images via NOAA and Shutterstock

See the rest here:
Flame-colored NOAA map paints a picture of this week’s toasty heat wave

Bad Behavior has blocked 1144 access attempts in the last 7 days.