If your postal address reads UK, then you might stand a chance to welcome a free intelligent refrigerator into your dens. However it isn’t yet clear about how and when one can test his/her luck to chill out with this smart yet eco-friendly kitchen appliance. It is reported that 3000 “intelligent” refrigerators, which will adapt their power use to the ebb and flow of demands on the national electricity grid, are to be given away in a trial by the UK government next year. To attest its green trait, Department of Energy and Climate Change stated that based on such a dynamic demand technology, gadgets can help Britain to save about 2m tonnes of carbon dioxide a year and a further £222m in energy savings.
This one is for those people who are ignorant about their carbon footprints by means of relentless printing on papers. Just recently, a company named, Brother, has unleashed two new laser printers, the HL-4040CDN and the MFC-9450CDN. Sporting an automatic duplex printing feature, these printers print on both the sides of the page which helps to reduce the wastage of paper. This means lesser papers will see their way to landfills. The first one of the duo, the HL-4040CDN, along with the dual-sided printing feature also includes 21ppm print speeds for black and white and color pages as well as maximum print quality of 2400x600dpi.
China’s blue (though hazy) skyline will soon boast of a green tower rising high to cut through all the non-eco-friendly attention that the country has garnered over a period. Spiraling through the air, it looks like it is being drilled out of the earth to make a benchmark as a dominating green summit. Christened as the Shanghai Tower, the force behind this 632 meters tall skyscraper is Gensler. Located at Luijiazui Finance and Trade Zone, it is stands out with a set of nine cylindrical buildings stacked on top of each other. A triangular outer façade encloses the entire structure, giving rise to nine sky gardens, which serve as public spaces. The mixed-use structure will house businesses, restaurants, cafés, coffee shops and convenience stores.
Emergency service vehicles go Green! Last month I wrote about the solar powered ambulances from Mumbai, India. But today, I am back with solar powered fire trucks that are driving up and down the town of Shawnee in Pennsylvania, United States. Intending to cut down their carbon footprints, the Fire department worked on a trial project to gauge the effectiveness and efficiency of solar powered fire trucks. Solar panels fitted on the roof of these trucks are expected to power up the necessary equipment like firefighters’ battery-powered flashlights, portable radios, thermal imaging cameras and the Mobile Data Terminal, within the trucks when the ignition is turned off. Also these cool red beasts are left running to keep the hoses from freezing when the temperature drops.
Image for representational purpose only
Since living on alternative energy sources is deemed to be the latest trend, allow me to bring to your attention to the Axial Flux Wind Turbine. Harnessing the wind’s energy with its large 10 foot (diameter) fan blades, it is a complete kit for $1,750 from OtherPower. Though it doesn’t seem to fit the urban scenario, people living on farms, ranches or other wide open airy locations can find a place to fix this DIY wind turbine kit. Inspired by Hugh Piggotts designs, the kit contains the assembled alternator, blades, tail vane, and all necessary hardware to assemble the machine. More importantly, a users manual is also shipped along, without which it can be a daunting task. Custom designed to charge up the batteries of 12, 24 and 48V, this is 10 foot diameter turbine is conservatively rated at 800 Watts. However the alternator has proven to withstand sustained output of 1000 Watts in bench testing.
Since gasoline prices are chewing into our salaries and hybrid cars are far from being affordable for a common person (like me), Sanyo is out to help us move about the town on eneloop bike. Just unveiled, this electric hybrid two-wheeler is fitted with a “Power-up Mode” that helps to reduce the burden on the biker’s legs as well his/her carbon footprints. An ideal blend of a standard bicycle and a moped, this hybrid version augments the rider’s capacity to speed up the roads with ease. This extra power is equivalent to double the rider’s pedal force for going uphill too. Also a new “loop charge function” generates electricity and charges the battery while moving. Though the electric motor fitted on the front wheel renders motion to it, the energy generated by pedaling goes is directed to the rear wheel. And if you are concerned about the safety, then be assured as the two-wheel drive system provides a much stable ride. Even while braking, the system harnesses energy.
As we step into the last month of this year, it’s time to retrospect and pick out the few designs that left a lasting impression on Designlaunches, in the month of November. The pick ranges from everyday things to concepts that we wish were true.
For the best in design, stay tuned to Designlaunches.com
Lunar Baby Thermometer
Fold&Hold Bike is the best seat for your butt
Exotic mobile phone design
Nokia concept takes the shimmy route
Quick! Drown in the Step Bed
Drag your finger to turn off the lights
The countdown for the year 2009 has started and its time to bring your attention to the 2009 Green Car of the Year. Hunting for the most promising fuel efficient and eco-friendly vehicle for the next model year, Green Car Journal has crowned the 2009 Volkswagen Jetta TDI with the green honor at the 2008 Los Angeles Auto Show. Beating strong contenders like BMW 335d, Ford Fusion Hybrid, Saturn Vue 2 Mode Hybrid, and Smart ForTwo, the Jetta TDI uses a 2-liter, turbocharged, diesel, four-cylinder engine to achieve an EPA-rated 41mpg highway fuel economy and 30mpg city.
In line with our focus on recycling paper, take a look at 75 year olds’ take on it. An old fellow from Japan has cranked up a method to recycle his old newspapers to heat his home. Shigeru Ota has modified the fundamental method of recycling old newspapers into burnable bricks. Starting off by soaking newspapers in water, he uses a 2-inch wide steel pipe to remove water based on a mechanism similar to that of a ratcheting caulk gun. Once thoroughly dried, the plugs of newsprint resemble standard charcoal briquettes in shape and size. Though such a method may not be viable on a larger scale, at least underprivileged folks can utilize heaps of discarded newsprints to heat up their shelters in chilling times.
If you have some nifty, ingenuous or out-of-the-box green ideas to live an eco-firendly lifestyle, simply post on the eco-blogoshpere and the world will know about it. Just like this Instructable user has done. He realized the need to address to all about community recycling, but with minimum cost. Since high cost and less sponsors are the prime reason for failure of eco projects, this fellow has come up with an affordable recycling program. Focusing on the fact that everybody needs to start recycling and reusing, with the RecycleBus, he also wants to clear the myth that recycling is tough. Roll over to understand this green drive…..