is a new see-through electricity generating coating technology
designed for glass windows for tall towers, skyscrapers and detached
homes in the US. The company claims the product has the potential to
offset 30 to 50 percent of the energy demand when installed on a
50-story building - with a calculated one-year financial payback.
SolarWindow has been developed to performance standards in order to
give real estate developers, engineers, architects, building designers,
and future customers plenty of financial incentive and it has been
rigorously tested for durability, degradation, and performance.
REM talked to SolarWindow President and CEO John Conklin to find out more.
Alongside innovative battery technology, another potential method for
charging electric vehicles (EVs) could be wireless energy transfer
strips installed on road surfaces. The potential for new electric
vehicles is quite exciting, particularly with regard to mass transit
vehicles such as buses and trams, but the technology could one day be
used for EVs also.
All around the world, the green vehicle revolution is starting to speed
up. At first, the main impetus focused on electric vehicles (EVs) and
other green cars powered by hydrogen or running as hybrids. However,
increasingly, clean vehicle technology is beginning to appear in mass
transit vehicles, particularly buses.
Modern buildings currently account for about 40 percent of the energy
consumed in developed countries, of which two-thirds can be attributed
to heating and cooling. However, over the years, a number of innovative
window designs have appeared as part of overall attempts by the energy
sector and research institutions to cut energy use and reduce costs.
Earlier this year, in late January, Manchester and Abu Dhabi
Universities announced their intention to collaborate on a project to
produce foam containing graphene, a material consisting of a single
layer of carbon atoms arranged in a honeycomb lattice which is 10 times
stronger than steel but 1000 times lighter than a sheet of paper per
A new paper from industry body Scottish Renewables
has found that UK government spending could deliver a world-leading
renewable energy system if £500 million of allocated funds are targeted
A solar tracker
is a device that orientates a PV system, particularly a large
installation such as a solar farm, towards the sun in order to enable it
to capture more solar energy than it would otherwise do without such a
device. In essence, tracking is about minimising the angle of incidence
between incoming sunlight and a solar panel array. Solar panels can
capture the diffuse part of the sun’s light, in the blue sky which also
increases proportionately when it’s cloudy, as well as direct sunlight
and solar trackers can increase the amount of solar energy captured. In
general, tracking systems can usually capture an additional 50 percent
of sunlight in summer and 20 percent in the winter, but this differs
according to latitude.
Net metering was first established in the US state of Idaho in 1980 and
in Arizona in 1981, although Minnesota is commonly acknowledged as the
first state to pass an actual net metering law in 1983. It is now
commonplace in certain countries, particularly the USA, but how does net
metering fare against Feed-in Tariffs (FiTS) with regard to its
effectiveness as an incentive for renewable energy installation? Closer
scrutiny of the two approaches provides an easy answer – FiTS wins
easily, being far more effective as a means of incentivizing and
promoting renewable energy development.
Last year, NV Energy, a utility covering the US state of Nevada,
found itself embroiled in a confrontation with its solar energy
customers over fees distributed energy generation (more simply
‘Distributed Generation’ or DG). In January
this year, the company offered them a compromise. The company, which is
owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Energy, has announced it
will submit a proposal to the state regulator that will allow customers
who already own solar panels to avoid new fees over the next 20 years.
These fees became effective earlier this year and are highly
controversial. They would still be levied against new solar energy
customers. Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval argued that people who don’t
own solar panels are paying more than they should for grid maintenance
and interconnections while solar panel owners enjoy the benefits. NV
Energy and the PUC take t…
The regularly repeated claim that nuclear is too expensive a technology
is supported by the ongoing Hinkley C debacle in the UK. A ridiculously
expensive project with a long history of delays and rising costs.
Most people in the world actively engaged in watching the news know
about the California drought, which has impacted the state particularly
badly, hitting its agriculture and causing the largest spate of
wildfires in their history. In April 2015, the conditions causing the
drought also broke California’s low snowpack record which, according to
the state’s Chief of Snow Surveys, Frank Gehrke, was ‘obliterated’,
shrinking to just 3 percent of its normal size.
Over recent years, the wind industry all over the world has had to
endure a spate of protest against the construction of onshore (and
offshore) wind farms. At first, the complaints were concerned with
visual impact, but more recently wind turbine noise
has also been a major source of complaints. Collectively, this level of
opposition has been enough, in many cases, to completely thwart the
development of wind farms in certain areas.
However, is there really any evidence to suggest noise, if indeed
wind turbines produce any of any real significance, is a major problem?
Survey after scientific survey on the matter has rejected the suggestion
after prolonged and careful analysis.
Earthships are green buildings constructed using a variety of recycled
materials and which also use natural processes, such as solar energy,
rainwater and plants, for the various utilities such as heating, power
and water. The concept has worked well in warmer regions such as New Mexico where it was originally developed, but is it really suited to colder climates such as Northern Europe?
A new set of standards and for the design and operation of tidal turbines has been published by DNV GL on the basis of outputs from a project in the Energy Technologies Institute’s (ETI) marine technology programme.
In a highly interesting conversation with
Renewable Energy Magazine, Phil Horton, Managing Director of Dulas Renewable Energy discusses the present situation
with regard to the UK renewable energy sector, including Labour’s
proposed amendments and the possible impact of present government policy
on UK renewable energy targets, particularly with regard to the UK’s
present reputation as a leader in the global renewable energy sector.