The Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project is under construction near Tonopah, Nevada. Once completed it will power up to 75,000 homes during peak electricity periods. So how does it work? The project will use 17,500 heliostat mirrors to collect and focus the sun’s thermal energy to heat molten salt flowing through a 540-foot (160 m) tall solar power tower. The molten salt then circulates from the tower to a storage tank where it is used to produce steam and generate electricity.

Construction of the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project

Tonopah, Nevada, USA

38°14′N 117°22′W
World's Largest Solar Project Would Generate Electricity 24 Hours a Day, Power 1 Million U.S. Homes
The race to build the world's largest solar power plant is heating up.
By EcoWatch

The race to build the world’s largest solar power plant is heating up. California-based energy company SolarReserve announced plans for a massive concentrated solar power (CSP) plant in Nevada that claims to be the largest of its kind once built.

SolarReserve CEO Kevin Smith told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that the $5 billion endeavor would generate between 1,500 and 2,000 megawatts of power, enough to power about 1 million homes. That amount of power is as much as a nuclear power plant, or the 2,000-megawatt Hoover Dam and far bigger than any other existing solar facility on Earth, the Review-Journal pointed out.

“It’s a big project,” Smith told the publication. “It’s an ambitious project.”

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Scientists Develop World's First Cyber Plant
A team of scientists at Linköping University in Sweden have developed the first electrically augmented plant, creating both analog and digital circuits inside a living rose. This technology could allow scientists to regulate growth and chemical processes in plants, as well as harness photosynthesis to create new solar cells.

The team used a highly conductive polymer, called PEDOT-S, to form wires within the interior of the xylem, the tissue that carries water around the plant. The wires were assembled by exposing rose cuttings to a solution of the polymer, which spread evenly throughout the plant, coating the xylem and forming conductive structures longer than 5 centimeters (2 inches). Because the polymer did not completely fill the xylem, the ability of the plant to carry water and nutrients around was not limited.

Plant sap is full of ions (charged molecules) that are used by plants to regulate growth and transport energy. Using the wires and the sap, they were able to create an electrochemical transistor, turning the ionic signals to an electronic output. These transistors behaved almost exactly like the ones found in computers and phones…

Professor Magnus Berggren, leader of the group that developed this technology, believes that electronically enhanced plants could have a huge impact in nderstanding plants better as well as developing integrated technologies such as photosynthesis-based fuel cells, bio-sensors, growth regulators and devices that can control the inner functions of plants. 


“As she stood looking at it, wondering why there was a lamp-post in the middle of a wood and wondering what to do next,  she heard a pitter patter of feet coming towards her. And soon after that a very strange person stepped out from among the trees and into the light of the lamp-post…”

Somewhere in the forest on the Front Range of Colorado Redditor Gen4200 has recreated an iconic location of the magical realm of Narnia as a surprise for his girlfriend. Unbeknownst to her, he hiked out into the woods on a piece of land that they own and installed a lamp-post like the one first discovered by Lucy Pevensie after stepping through the secret portal in the wardrobe in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis.

There’s no word yet on whether or not this particular lamp-post has magical properties but it is solar-powered, so Gen4200 carefully chose a spot in the woods that receives plenty of sun. Next he plans to purchase this Pan Statue to install nearby so the secret location will have its own Mr. Tumnus the faun as well.

I also got an etched stone that I need to haul in with a quote from CS Lewis - “Most of us, I suppose, have a secret country but for most of us it is only an imaginary country.”

Gen4200 told his fellow Redditors that he and his girlfriend have plans to create a number of special locations such as this one on their property, but he undertook this awesome project in secret just for her. We hope he also shares photos of the lamp-post in the snow.

Click here for photos of Gen4200′s complete set-up process.

[via Reddit]

Sun Jars

These are the gifts we made for my loves family. As per the diagram, they charge in the light (not only sunlight, lamps and such work as well) and when it gets dark enough, they glow! A very fun and very rewarding project, a decent tutorial can be found here. We didn’t make ours quite the same way, though: we used different jars, frosted the inside so it wouldn’t chip off, and cut squares into the lids before affixing the lights to them. Also, this isn’t a great photo of the lids, but we painted them matte black and scuffed them up a bit with steel wool. We hope everyone enjoys these as much as we enjoyed making them!

5 hours // spray paint, hot glue, and caulking on mason jars // 10 jars total
Ontario to convert largest coal plant in North America to solar farm
Idled in 2013, and formerly the largest emitter in Canada, Nanticoke coal plant will be converted to a 44 MW solar installation

In an all-too-fitting sign of the times, the grounds of the idle Nanticoke Generating Station—once North America’s largest coal plant—will soon be lined with solar panels.

Ceasing energy production in 2013 as part of Ontario’s phase-out of coal energy, the enormous plant, which could produce almost 4,000 megawatts of power at full capacity, was officially shuttered for safety reasons last year. But the strip of land on the north shore of Lake Erie will soon begin churning out power once again—only this time, the electricity will be emissions-free.

As part of the Independent Electricity System Operator’s 455 MW power procurement announcement earlier this week, the Nanticoke, Ont. site will be repurposed to house a 44 MW solar farm.

“The Nanticoke project is a great opportunity for Ontario to take a former coal plant site and transform it into a clean and reliable solar power plant,” Michelle Chislett, SunEdison vice-president and country manager for Canada, said.

“This project is a great example of how countries are retiring coal plants and replacing them with clean, renewable power plants,” she added.

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OTIS: Optimized Traveling Independent Space

Green Mountain College

REED students in Prof. Lucas Brown’s design/build class unveil their semester project, OTIS, to the community.

“Good workmanship—that is, careful, considerate, and loving work—requires us to think considerately of the whole process, natural and cultural, involved in the making of wooden artifacts […]. The good worker loves the board before it becomes a table, loves the tree before it yields the board, loves the forest before it gives up the tree.”
-Wendell Berry “Preserving Wildness”
Hydro Projects and Renewable energy is the way to go

Hydro Projects and Renewable energy is the way to go

Amplify’d from

Hydro Projects and Renewable energy is the way to go


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Boston Is Getting Solar-Powered Park Benches That Charge Your Devices

No longer should we have to beg a block’s worth of bartenders to let us charge our dead phones. What if USB outlets were treated like public property instead?

Thanks to a trio of hardware designers and engineers who generated the idea at the MIT Media Lab, Boston is now turning to cute benches that can charge mobile devices. With 10 already installed in parks across the city in a pilot project, the solar-powered “Soofas” mark a new milestone in smart urban furniture.

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