November 11, 2008

Husqvarna's Solar-Powered Robot will Mow Your Lawn Without You!

husq.jpgIt is almost officially winter time, so most people living in the Northern Hemisphere are not mowing their lawns frequently if at all.  Even so, this new Husqvarna's Solar-Powered Robot is so cool I had to share it! Capable of mowing 3/4 acre, the 18 volt, 4 amp Auto Mower 230 runs 90 minutes on a single charge and cuts 1300 square feet per hour. The Auto Mower even returns to its own charging station when its power is running low!  That's one smart, eco-friendly lawn mower!

Via: CleanTechnica
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 4, 2008

Solar Tree Sculpture Charges Your Gadgets

solar-cell-tree-charger-vivien-muller.jpg I think this solar gadget is aesthetically pleasing and very cool, almost as cools as it iYo. Using 54 solar panels, this metal solar tree sculpture will charge your iPod, cell phone, and digital camera. Furthermore, the branches are movable, so you can create your own unique shape for the solar tree whenever you feel the whim.

Via: Reevoo

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

October 30, 2008

Cool Inventions: iYo Yo-Yo Charges Your iPod or iPhone

Using a yo-yo as an induction charger, Swedish designer Peter Thuvander has developed the iYo. Imagine spinning a yo-yo to charge your Apple iPod touch or iPhone:
The induction technology is based on this..

And of course there is a small onboard LI cell to store the electricity generated. So no need to charge as you yoyo. Yoyo and then charge.

The iYo is the coolest green gadget I've seen in awhile, and it makes me wonder what else we can power from simple toys, like PlayPumps International merry-go-round that uses kid energy to pump water.

Via: Green Upgrader

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

September 23, 2008

4th Generation iPod Nano is More Eco-Friendly

ipodnano_hero20080909.jpg Apple's 4th Generation iPod Nanos are the most eco-friendly version yet. The new Nano is made with arsenic-free glass and does not contain Brominated Flame Retardant (BFR) or polyvinylchloride (PVR). It is also made from a recyclable aluminum enclosure. If your old iPod no longer works, you can recycle it at an Apple store.  

Via:  CleanTechnica
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

September 16, 2008

H2GO Hydrogen-Powered Remote Control Cars: Be One of the First to Own One!

51647f421e7d9bb04b7a27c76d88ea9d.jpg If you have ever had a remote control car, you know that you go through batteries like crazy. Master Replicas is featuring a hydrogen-powered remote control car called the H2GO. If you are one of the first 100 people to purchase this toy, Master Replica will donate two additional H2GO models to the school of your choice! Here's how the hydrogen-powered toy works:
The compact kit comprises a refueling station, a solar panel, a hydrogen-powered RC car and a remote control. The refueling station splits water by electrolysis into its elements, oxygen and hydrogen. Oxygen is released and the hydrogen is pumped into the car, contained in a balloon in the car unit.

When the car is turned on, the hydrogen flows through another catalyst in the car causing a series of reactions that power the car. The reactions cause a flow of electrons that produce an electric current, which in turn powers the motors and back wheels.

The H2GO delivers the same performance as other R/C cars, according to their website. I have not tested this toy out, and I have not had much luck with hydrogen-powered toys. My family tried a hydrogen-powered rocket that broke after two days; however, the H2GO appears to be better constructed.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

September 11, 2008

Manure-Powered Carnival Ride at the California State Fair

1345801188_18a106cf06_m.jpg Moo poo power has been used to provide energy for farms, but this summer the world's first manure-powered carnival ride debuted at the California State Fair. "The Barnyard Animal Train" used California dairy cow manure to create renewable biogas to power the ride. Children learned about renewable energy on the ride.. I wonder how the ride smelled...
Via: CleanTechnica
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 28, 2008

ESL (Electron Stimulated Luminescence): Move Over CFLs and LEDs, There's a New Eco-friendly Lightbulb in Town

vic_butterfly.jpg Changing your light bulbs from incandescents to compact fluorescents (CFLs) has become the mantra of the green movement for what one individual can do to lessen their contribution to global warming; however, CFLs contain trace amounts of mercury making them hard to dispose. Vu1 has created a "light without compromise" with the ESL (Electron Stimulated Luminescence) bulb. According to CleanTechnica:
The technology works by using accelerated electrons to stimulate a phosphor coating on the inside of the glass bulb. In contrast, incandescent bulbs run a current through a filament inside the bulbs, and LEDs stimulate semiconductors to create light...Vu1 claims that their bulbs do not have the trace amounts of mercury that CFLs contain, and they do not require the manufacturing energy of LEDs.
ESL bulbs should be available next month and retail for about $12.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 5, 2008

Learning from Plants: Major MIT Solar Discovery to Turn Every Home into a Power Plant

Using the process of photosynthesis as a model, MIT scientists have discovered a way to store solar energy when the sun is not shining. Current off-the-grid solar systems rely on expensive batteries to store excess power produced during the day for nighttime and cloudy day use, and these batteries need to be replaced every eight to ten years. MIT's Daniel Nocera has discovered a new process that uses a catalyst to split oxygen from hydrogen in water, in order that later it can be recombined as a fuel cell.
The new catalyst consists of cobalt metal, phosphate and an electrode, placed in water. When electricity -- whether from a photovoltaic cell, a wind turbine or any other source -- runs through the electrode, the cobalt and phosphate form a thin film on the electrode, and oxygen gas is produced.

Combined with another catalyst, such as platinum, that can produce hydrogen gas from water, the system can duplicate the water splitting reaction that occurs during photosynthesis.

James Barber, the Ernst Chain Professor of Biochemistry at Imperial College London, explained the implications of this discovery:
This is a major discovery with enormous implications for the future prosperity of humankind. The importance of their discovery cannot be overstated since it opens up the door for developing new technologies for energy production thus reducing our dependence for fossil fuels and addressing the global climate change problem.
Nocera thinks within 10 years, this new solar technology will be available to home owners. Via: MIT
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

June 23, 2008

Solar and Wind Charging Power Tent for Music Festivals


Glastonbury Festival will have plenty of electricity thanks to U.K. mobile company Orange's green cellphone charging stations. The Gotwind REchargepod is the first mobile phone charging station powered solely by Wind and Solar Renewable Energy. The self sufficient pod provides a quick and secure place to charge multiple mobile phones whilst outdoors and away from traditional power sources. With a peak power of 1Kw, the pod can recharge 100 mobile phones per hour, and stores any unused energy in its battery bank.

And if that's not enough - a fully functional weather station and power generated and consumed readout is also viewable for all to see on an information panel within the pod.

Via Gizmodo at

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June 19, 2008

Green Plug Develops Single Universal Power Adapter for All Electronic Devices

top-pic-2nd-d.jpg I have a drawer full of cell phone power adapters, camera adapters, and of course, my laptop and modem have different power adapters too! Each time I get a new electronic device, I keep the old adapter thinking I might need it some day, but it never fits the new phone, camera, etc. Green Plug, a start-up company, proposes we use one universal power adapter for all our electronic needs, which would help the environment by eliminating the need to produce and ship a new power adapter with each device. Green Plug explains:
Billions of devices including laptops, printers, speakers, routers, modems, cell phones, entertainment devices, power tools, cameras and so many other portable electronic devices require a power source that converts between 90V and 254V wall power to device-specific DC power. That means that these devices require unique power converters, and that is very costly, is extremely inconvenient and contributes to wasted resources and pollution.
According to MacWorld, Green Plug's universal adapter will also eliminate phantom power draws:
Green Plug's technology allows each device to communicate its individual power requirements to the power adapter, allowing several devices to share one adapter...Each adapter will act like a hub that several devices can plug into... The adapters also will shut off the power supply when a device has finished charging or is turned off, giving further energy savings.
Westinghouse has already endorsed the idea.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

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