Thanks partly to its success using biofuels to power cars instead of oil, Brazil has become known as something of a sustainable business leader. The country deserves credit for taking some initiative on renewable energy, and at last year’s climate summit in Copenhagen President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was one of the most outspoken proponents for an ambitious (more…)
With all the talk about lithium ion batteries, and the unprecedented investment occurring in this area, it is easy to forget the most prevalent utility-scale energy storage technology, pumped hydro. Pumped hydro is the most mature and largest storage technology available. Worldwide, there are over 150 pumped hydro facilities with a total capacity of over 100 GW. In the United States, there are 38 pumped hydro facilities (more…)
The news that the world’s largest tidal turbine – 1 MW in size – will be installed off the coast of Scotland near Orkney should come as no surprise.
Primitive tidal mills operated in the England date back to the 11th century. During the 18th century, several tidal mills popped up in Western Europe. The first modern tidal plants borrowed from conventional (more…)
Recently, CleanTechies had the pleasure to speak with Phillip Ridings, CEO of Dragonfly Industries, Inc. We talked about the the company, its products, and what its products may mean for the clean tech sector. If Dragonfly lives up to it’s reputation it could easily revolutionize the wind industry.
CleanTechies: Phillip, can you tell us a little about the designs for the Dragonfly Turbine and MantaRay Power stations and what kind of plans you have for their future?
Whenever you suggest that renewables could one day supply a large proportion of our electricity, scores of people jump up to denounce it as a pipedream, a fantasy, a dangerous delusion. They insist that the energy resources don’t exist; that the technologies are inefficient; that they can’t be accommodated on the grid; that the variability of supply will cause constant blackouts.
I suspect that no amount of evidence will sway some of these people. There’s a large contingent which seems to hate renewables come what may. (more…)
Often when going to the beach the common complaint is that the ocean is too cold. They appear to be warming up a bit. The upper layer of Earth’s ocean has warmed since 1993, indicating a strong climate change signal, according to a new international study co-authored by oceanographer Josh Willis of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The energy stored is enough to power nearly 500 100-watt light bulbs for each of the roughly 6.7 billion people on the planet.
“We are seeing the global ocean store more heat than it gives off,” said John Lyman, an oceanographer at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Joint Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Research, who led the study that analyzed nine different estimates of heat content in the upper ocean from 1993 to 2008.
To date not a single offshore wind turbine been built in the United States. Meanwhile Europe, China and Japan are far along in developing a water-based wind power industry. All one needs is a strong and steady wind as well as a relatively easy way to connect o the power grid so as to transmit the power gained from the wind. Most people think of wind power from various land based operations. However, it can be done by basing the wind turbine in the sea.
A wind farm is a group of wind turbines in the same location used for production of electric power. Individual turbines are interconnected with a medium voltage power collection system and communications network. At a substation, this medium voltage electrical current is increased in voltage with a transformer for connection to the high voltage transmission system.
Near shore turbine installations are on land within 5 miles of a shoreline or on water within ten miles. These areas are good sites for turbine installation, because of wind produced by convection due to differential heating of land and sea each day. Wind speeds in these zones share the characteristics of both onshore and offshore wind, depending on the prevailing wind direction. (more…)
NASA, U.S. Navy and university researchers have successfully demonstrated the first robotic underwater vehicle to be powered entirely by natural, renewable, ocean thermal energy. Though not quite a perpetual motion machine it is close to that.
The Sounding Oceanographic Lagrangrian Observer Thermal RECharging (SOLO-TREC) autonomous underwater vehicle uses a novel thermal recharging engine powered by the natural temperature differences found at different ocean depths.