The case for office buildings with windows that open

May 18, 2017 by  
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Naturally ventilated facilities not only help cut air-conditioning usage, they are directly linked to improved employee productivity.

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The case for office buildings with windows that open

Can we master the pot industry’s energy appetite?

December 23, 2016 by  
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How utilities can smartly managing legal marijuana’s energy demand, and how it could help integrate more renewables.

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Can we master the pot industry’s energy appetite?

Climate change is coming for your Christmas favorites

December 23, 2016 by  
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Like the Grinch who stole Christmas, the changing climate is putting cloves, cinnamon, cocoa, champagne, perfume and other festive treats at risk.

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Climate change is coming for your Christmas favorites

Efficient "ice battery" provides 24/7 cooling for your home

July 28, 2016 by  
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The eco-friendly and cost-effective “ice battery” method of residential indoor climate control has been around for more than a decade, but one company still believes it is the answer to inefficient air conditioning units. California-based Ice Energy is the company that makes Ice Bears for both residential and commercial installations. The cooling units promise to save home and building owners a ton of money, while providing reliable cool air with a smaller environmental impact than traditional air conditioning. The system is based on a simple concept—ice is cold and can make air cold, too—but the sophisticated system is both smart and flexible to respond to the demands of a modern world. The company has lofty claims for its ice-based cooling units, saying the Ice Bear system “reduces peak cooling electricity by 95 percent for up to 6 hours a day” resulting in energy savings up to 40 percent overall. The efficient unit essentially makes ice, a low energy task, and then uses it to cool your home’s air. Ice Bear can reportedly get four hours of cool air from its ice with the compressor shut off, which means it uses a lot less energy than a traditional air conditioner. Related: BeCool HVAC system generates energy while keeping buildings cool The Ice Bear, which is installed outside just like traditional central air conditioning units, can integrate with a home’s duct system or use a ductless mini-split system for homes lacking ductwork. It’s a smart system, too, designed with remote monitoring and control capabilities, as well as a host of reporting features that allow homeowners to see graphical representations of their energy usage. Via Treehugger Images via Ice Energy

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Efficient "ice battery" provides 24/7 cooling for your home

BeCool HVAC system generates clean energy while keeping your house cool

July 20, 2016 by  
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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

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BeCool HVAC system generates clean energy while keeping your house cool

New 3D solar cells capture sunlight from every angle

July 20, 2016 by  
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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

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New 3D solar cells capture sunlight from every angle

Phasing out refrigerants doesn’t have to mean using more energy

July 11, 2016 by  
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HVAC giants such as Ingersoll Rand are prioritizing innovation that considers both.

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Phasing out refrigerants doesn’t have to mean using more energy

How Cool Is Your AC Unit?

September 7, 2015 by  
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As temperatures soar higher, so does your air conditioning bill. Does it have to, though? The founders of Mistbox have developed a revolutionary technology that is cost effective, easy to install, and can make your air conditioning unit up to 40%…

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How Cool Is Your AC Unit?

Atkins’ H2 low carbon building is an “ecological sandwich” in China

December 5, 2014 by  
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The newly opened TEDA H2 Building in China is the world-first low-carbon building that has been accredited with four green building certificates: the US LEED (Gold), Chinese 3-Star, Japanese CASBEE (S Class) and the British BREEAM (Very Good). Designed by Atkins , the building incorporates a variety of green building initiatives, including simple techniques such as rainwater harvesting to relatively complex photovoltaic systems for solar energy. Read the rest of Atkins’ H2 low carbon building is an “ecological sandwich” in China Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: atkins , BREEAM , carbon footprint , CASBEE , china , green certificates , hvac , LEED certificate , Low Carbon Building , rainwater harvesting , renewable energy , smart facade , solar panels , Solar Power , Sustainable Building , TEDA H2 Building

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Atkins’ H2 low carbon building is an “ecological sandwich” in China

SCADpad North America Lets Tiny House Lovers Live Large in a Parking Spot

April 14, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of SCADpad North America Lets Tiny House Lovers Live Large in a Parking Spot Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: adaptive reuse , Atlanta , christian sottile , hvac , jose mallabo , marcus kenney , micro housing , nubox , Parans , parans daylighting system , parking garage , parking garage adaptive reuse , paula wallace , philps hue , Savannah school of art and design , SCAD , SCADPad , scadpad community , scadpad micro housing , smart glass , tiny homes , tiny house movement , Trish Andersen , will penny

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SCADpad North America Lets Tiny House Lovers Live Large in a Parking Spot

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