Yellow is the new green: researchers investigate ‘peecycling’

May 5, 2015 by  
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Click here to view the embedded video. Pee is powerful stuff. It has been used to make false teeth , drinking water , brain cells , electricity , and yes, even whiskey and beer . Talk about a closed system! Urine is also great for growing plants, due to its rich nitrogen and phosphorus content. Researchers at University of Michigan are investigating best practices for application of urine as fertilizer on a large scale. In order for urine to be applied to crops safely, the team aims to identify pathogens and determine ways in which they may be eliminated. “A few questions we have are: What contaminants are applied onto the fields with the fertilizer, where do they go, and how can we get rid of the concerning contaminants before they are applied?” says Rebecca Lahr, one of the researchers in the Environmental and Civil Engineering Department at University of Michigan. The mass disposal of liquid waste down the drain is not only a missed opportunity for sustainable agriculture, it is damaging to the environment. Algae also love nitrogen and phosphorus and the resulting algal blooms often cause mass marine mortality events and shellfish poisoning. By implementing peecycling on a large scale, we will gain a powerful agricultural tool while eliminating a major source of water pollution. Via Treehugger  and University of Michigan Engineering Image via Michigan Engineering Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: alternative uses for urine , collecting urine , human urine , Pee Power , Peecycling , University of Michigan Engineering , urine , urine agriculture , urine and plants , urine fertilizer

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Yellow is the new green: researchers investigate ‘peecycling’

Solar Impulse is gearing up for five-day solar-powered flight across the Pacific Ocean

May 5, 2015 by  
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Solar Impulse , the experimental solar-powered aircraft with just enough room for a pilot, is still on its way around the world, despite a number of delays due to poor weather conditions. The project has been grounded in Nanjing, China, since April 21 where they landed after a one-day flight following a three-week weather delay . The sun-powered plane was originally planned to embark on the five-day trans-Pacific journey on May 5, now delayed to at least May 9. André Borschberg , co-founder of Solar Impulse, will pilot the record-setting Pacific Ocean crossing as soon as conditions are favorable. Borschberg has been gearing up for the challenge by fine tuning his yoga and meditation techniques and become more comfortable in the cramped cockpit of the solar-powered aircraft. He’s also used his time on the ground to comb over the aircraft, making sure that everything is in tip-top condition for the five-day flight to Hawaii. Solar Impulse is traveling around the world, powered entirely by the sun, as an ambassador of the #FutureIsClean movement, a global effort to raise awareness for clean energy. + Solar Impulse Images via Solar Impulse Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “clean energy” , Andre Borschberg , around-the-world trips , bertrand piccard , china , flying across pacific , flying around the world , futureisclean , solar impulse , solar powered aircraft , solar powered airplane , solar powered flight across pacific ocean , solar powered plane , zero fuel plane , zero fuel vehicles

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Solar Impulse is gearing up for five-day solar-powered flight across the Pacific Ocean

Watch Oregon’s Lost Lake disappear down a bizarre hole

May 5, 2015 by  
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Click here to view the embedded video. Located in Oregon’s Mount Hood National Forest, the Lost Lake presents a highly unusual natural phenomenon; each winter the lake bed fills with water from nearby streams, and every spring it drains—rather like a bathtub—down a large hole. Jude McHugh, spokeswoman for the Willamette National Forest, told The Bulletin that the hole has been there for as long as anyone remembers, and that the mysterious phenomenon is most likely the result of the regions porous volcanic landscape —the hole itself is believed to be an open lava tube. As for exactly where the Lost Lake’s waters go each spring, no one is entirely sure, but it’s thought that it seeps into the subsurface where it recharges nearby aquifers. Via Treehugger Image screengrab via YouTube Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: central oregon park , groundwater aquifers , lost lake , Mount Hood National Forest , oregon national park , snowpack lake , volcanic landscape , water issues

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Watch Oregon’s Lost Lake disappear down a bizarre hole

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