Sunday, October 24, 2010

the "Electricitree"

The Electricitree: A manufactured tree that uses biomimic technology to generate electricity from the wind and sun.

Another interesting technology has entered the fray, Sway Power. Windstalks that sway in the wind and generate electricity. We have our sights set on combining biomimic technologies to produce an "Electricitree". We have reported on flutter technology with the "Nano Leaf", the photovoltaic Photo-leaf and now we have Sway Power with these new windstalks. Our electricitree concept is green energy power plants that look and behave like a tree, a tree that produces electricity.
The Electritree could generate electricity by mimicking the motions of a tree with leaves fluttering and soaking up sunlight in low wind conditions, connected to limbs that can sway to absorb and generate more power in higher a tree.

The article below reprinted from Discovery News, best describes this Sway Power concept.


By Alyssa Danigelis

Noise from wind turbine blades, inadvertent bat and bird kills and even the way wind turbines look have made installing them anything but a breeze. New York design firm Atelier DNA has an alternative concept that ditches blades in favor of stalks. Resembling thin cattails, the Windstalks generate electricity when the wind sets them waving. The designers came up with the idea for the planned city Masdar, a 2.3-square-mile, automobile-free area being built outside of Abu Dhabi. Atelier DNA’s “Windstalk” project came in second in the Land Art Generator competition a contest sponsored by Madsar to identify the best work of art that generates renewable energy from a pool of international submissions.

The proposed design calls for 1,203 “stalks,” each 180-feet high with concrete bases that are between about 33- and 66-feet wide. The carbon-fiber stalks, reinforced with resin, are about a foot wide at the base tapering to about 2 inches at the top. Each stalk will contain alternating layers of electrodes and ceramic discs made from piezoelectric material, which generates a current when put under pressure. In the case of the stalks, the discs will compress as they sway in the wind, creating a charge.

“The idea came from trying to find kinetic models in nature that could be tapped to produce energy,” explained Atelier DNA founding partner Darío Núñez-Ameni.

In the proposal for Masdar, the Windstalk wind farm spans 280,000 square feet. Based on rough estimates, said Núñez-Ameni the output would be comparable to that of a conventional wind farm covering the same area.

“Our system is very efficient in that there is no friction loss associated with more mechanical systems such as conventional wind turbines,” he said.

Each base is slightly different, and is sloped so that rain will funnel into the areas between the concrete to help plants grow wild. These bases form a sort of public park space and serve a technological purpose. Each one contains a torque generator that converts the kinetic energy from the stalk into energy using shock absorber cylinders similar to the kind being developed by Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Levant Power .

Wind isn’t constant, though, so Núñez-Ameni says two large chambers below the whole site will work like a battery to store energy. The idea is based on existing hydroelectric pumped storage systems. Water in the upper chamber will flow through turbines to the lower chamber, releasing stored energy until the wind starts up again.

The top of each tall stalk has an LED lamp that glows when the wind is blowing -- more intensely during strong winds and not all when the air is still. The firm anticipates that the stalks will behave naturally, vibrating and fluttering in the air.

“Windstalk is completely silent, and the image associated with them is something we're already used to seeing in a field of wheat or reeds in a marsh. Our hope is that people living close to them will like to walk through the field -- especially at night -- under their own, private sky of swarming stars,” said Núñez-Ameni.

After completion, a Windstalk should be able to produce as much electricity as a single wind turbine, with the advantage that output could be increased with a denser array of stalks. Density is not possible with conventional turbines, which need to be spaced about three times the rotor's diameter in order to avoid air turbulence. But Windstalks work on chaos and turbulence so they can be installed much closer together, said Núñez-Ameni.

Núñez-Ameni also reports that the firm is currently working on taking the Windstalk idea underwater. Called Wavestalk, the whole system would be inverted to harness energy from the flow of ocean currents and waves. The firm’s long-term goal is to build a large system in the United States, either on land or in the water.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Green Energy Innovations

Recently we attended the West Coast Green Innovation Convention in San Francisco. We had the pleasure of meeting many of you, the sincere providers of Green Energy Products and Services. We plead for and received your support in Green Energy Education, our Mobile Demonstration Exhibit for Rural Schools and Communities, our Mass Media Awareness Campaign and GRNNRG.ORG.
Things get done with public support.
Thank You

Innovations Abound
The technology is advancing very fast.
Today, the Noble Prize was given for the innovation called "Graphene" a transparent film that is 100 time stronger than steel.
The following article is from NPR and we think that this innovation will make a remarkable impact in a relatively short period of time.

Last Week, the University of North Carolina announce their plan to develop the "photo leaf", a gel filled leaf that collects solar energy much like photosynthesis.

This Last February, British researchers announced their research in "Biomimicry" (nature inspired technology design), with the "nano leaf", a leaf that uses "flutter" energy. When the leaf flutters in the breeze, it produces pico watts.
When thousands of Nanoleaves flap back and forth due to wind, millions and millions of Pico watts are generated, the stronger the wind, the more energy is generated.

The Inevitable!!?
Combine the Nanoleaf flutter system with the Photo-leaves and we have the "Electricitree"

The following article is reprinted from NPR and we think that this innovation will make a remarkable impact in a relatively short period of time. Kudos to NPR.

Nobel Awarded For Thin, Versatile Carbon Material
October 5, 2010
Two Russian-born scientists shared the Nobel Prize in physics on
Tuesday for "groundbreaking experiments'' with the thinnest, strongest
material known to mankind, a carbon vital for the creation of faster
computers and transparent touch screens.
Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov, professors at the University of
Manchester in Britain, in 2004 isolated graphene, a form of carbon only
one atom thick but more than 100 times stronger than steel, and showed
it has exceptional properties, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said.
Experiments with graphene could lead to the development of new superstrong materials to make
satellites, airplanes and cars, as well as innovative electronics, the academy said in announcing the
10 million kronor ($1.5 million) award.
Graphene transistors are predicted to be substantially faster than today's silicon transistors and
result in more efficient computers,'' the academy said in the citation. "Since it is practically
transparent and a good conductor, graphene is suitable for producing transparent touch screens,
light panels and maybe even solar cells.''
And researchers at the University of Southern California are using
graphene in organic photovoltaic solar cells as a highly transparent
material that's also good at conducting electricity. OPV cells are cheaper
and more flexible than silicon cells, and researchers say they could be
Jannik Meyer/Science via The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
Graphene is a one atom-thick layer of ordinary carbon atoms, organized in a flat sheet. It conducts both electricity and heat
extremely well.

and more flexible than silicon cells, and researchers say they could be
hung as curtains or even made into fabric and worn as power-generating
clothing, but they convert sunlight to electricity far less efficiently.
Geim, 51, is a Dutch national while Novoselov, 36, holds British and
Russian citizenship. Both are natives of Russia and started their careers
in physics there. They first worked together in the Netherlands before
moving to Britain.
Novoselov is among the youngest winners of a prize that normally goes to
scientists with decades of experience. The youngest Nobel laureate to
date is Lawrence Bragg, who was 25 when he shared the physics award
with his father William Bragg in 1915.
Geim told The Associated Press he didn't expect to win the prize this year
and had forgotten that it was Nobel time when the prize committee called
him from Stockholm.
The two scientists used simple Scotch tape as a crucial tool in their
experiments, peeling off thin flakes of graphene from a lager piece of
graphite, Geim said.
"It's a humble technique. But the hard work came later,'' he said,
comparing the material to plastics in its ability to revolutionize the world.
"It has all the potential to change your life in the same way that plastics
did,'' he said."It is really exciting.''
Geim last year won the prestigious Korber European Science Award for
the discovery, the University of Manchester said.
"This was a well-deserved award,'' said Phillip F. Schewe, spokesman for the American Institute of
Physics in College Park, Maryland.
"Graphene is the thinnest material in the world, it's one of the strongest, maybe the strongest
material in the world. It's an excellent conductor. Electrons move through it very quickly, which is
something you want to make circuits out of,'' Schewe said.
He said graphene may be a good material for making integrated circuits,
small chips with millions of transistors that are the backbone of all modern
telecommunications. Its properties could also lead to potential uses in
construction material, Schewe said, but added it would take a while
"before this sort of technology moves into mainstream application.''