renewable energy Archives - Green Building Elements

Browsing the "renewable energy" Tag

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Human Impact vs. the Environment – What can we do about it?

Millions of people make decisions that will impact the environment for better or worse. For the past 20 years, the world’s leaders have been working towards implementing processes, laws, legislations and infrastructure that will help to protect the environment and improve sustainability. There are always ongoing threats to the environment. However, there have been some […]

April 20th

Can BE-Wind’s New Windmill Provide More Wind Power?

BE-Wind* is taking what you think you know about small wind technology and turning it on its head. It has improved performance and made its windmills quieter by blocking the wind! How does the company do that? The Science of Wind Power Generation Current vertical wind generation systems are inherently inefficient because the wind that […]

December 6th

First US Power-to-Gas Plants Open in California and Colorado

Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) is bringing science fiction to life, launching two demonstration projects to create and test a carbon-free, power-to-gas system for the first time ever in the U.S. The technology converts electricity into gaseous energy and could provide North America with a large-scale, cost-effective solution for storing excess energy produced from renewable […]

April 24th

LEED to Recognize Living Building Challenge Credits

The U.S. Green Building Council recently announced that it will recognize energy and water requirements from the Living Building Challenge (the Challenge) green building system within the LEED green building program. Projects achieving the energy and water requirements in Living Building Challenge will be considered as technically equivalent to LEED. “USGBC and the International Living […]

April 13th

Eiffel Tower Goes Green

An ambitious remodel project at the Eiffel Tower is making its operations greener.  The first floor of the landmark building was recently refurbished for a better visitor experience and to improve the environmental impact of the historic building. First floor glazing was changed to provide a 25% reduction in solar heat gain during the summer […]

March 15th

Wind Tree Provides Silent Wind Power Beautifully

A new French start-up, NewWind, is making wind power beautiful!  Their new Wind Tree offers almost a hundred mini-windmills on an apparatus designed to look like a tree. Due to the light construction of the “leaves,” the Wind Tree generates power at wind speeds as low as 4.4 miles per hour!  This translates into sustained […]

January 12th

Author John Perlin and The Solar Cell

In a discussion today about solar energy and the coming Year of Light, author John Perlin helped enlighten me about the importance of the solar cell (photovoltaic systems) as a source for renewable electricity. What is the biggest consideration in designing a PV system, as opposed to a solar thermal system that uses multiple heliostats? […]

December 18th

Soccer Field Lights Powered By Players’ Energy

In a Brazilian neighborhood plagued by blackouts, panels under the turf of a neighborhood soccer field, fueled by players running over them, provide electricity to light the field and the surrounding homes.  A typical soccer player can run up to seven miles during a football game.  Most of the players in this neighborhood are local […]

October 27th

Your Solar Panels Are Facing the Wrong Way

Conventional wisdom says that panels should be installed facing south to get the most solar exposure (in the northern hemisphere). South-facing panels create the most power in the morning and mid-day, but peak demand for electricity typically occurs in the late afternoon. Because of that, a number of solar experts have begun to say that […]

October 24th

This Solar Cell Stores Its Own Power Like a Battery

This solar cell you see magnified in these pictures is unlike any other that’s come before it- because it stores power. This patent-pending device, invented at The Ohio State University, is the world’s first solar battery. This intention has plenty of potential to be a disruptive factor for the renewable energy industry. In the October […]

October 6th

Passive House Recognizes Net Zero, Plus Homes

Passive House is an international building standard developed by the Passive House Institute (PHI), which is located in Darmstadt, Germany.  Building to the Passive House Standard recognizes buildings which have been optimized through passive measures and components such as insulation, air-tightness, heat recovery, solar heat gains, solar shading and incidental internal heat gains.  Buildings which […]

October 2nd

Net Zero Buildings = the Future of the Commercial Market

The future of the green building market rests on net zero buildings.  These projects promise innovative new design – like that seen in this net zero building proposal for a Mercedes-Benz office building in Armenia – integrate a number of advanced “green” materials to maximize efficiency with renewable energy sources that generate as much energy […]

September 30th