Our world is now headed towards an energy crisis, if we’re not in one already, and discovering new ways to avert this disaster is what numerous scientists are working on. One promising creation that might be able to deliver clean energy to developing countries and to remote areas is the “artificial leaf.” The Air Force Office of Scientific Research, along with other agencies, has been a big supporter of this affordable, solar-powered device.
The concept of the artificial leaf is a brainchild of biochemist Daniel Nocera, who has been working on it for several years now. The device basically simplifies the process of photosynthesis. It’s is about as big as a medium-sized leaf or maybe a playing card and is made of a thin silicon wafer covered with enzymes that splits water molecules into its hydrogen and oxygen components. These gases can then be saved in tanks and utilized in hydrogen fuel compartments.
Nocera’s first output was an artificial leaf that was viable commercially but used purified water. If the water used was not purified, bacteria causes film to develop on the leaf and stop it from working. This makes the device useless as some countries don’t even have access to clean water. But the research group headed by Nocera was able to improve the device’s latest iteration. The latest design, which was recently revealed during the American Chemical Society convention, showed an artificial leaf that can work and develop energy even in dirty water. The group was able to adjust the enzymes so that it will break down and develop into a rough area that will stop any biofilm from developing. The catalysts will then self-heal and re-assemble and the process will repeat itself.
Admittedly, Nocera’s artificial leaf is not very efficient but it is simple and sturdy, making it ideal for giving inexpensive and renewable power to millions of people around the world who don’t have any reliable means to clean water and clean energy.
The population explosion has already devastated the Earth and led to climate change, so devices that can generate renewable energy and which are affordable will play a key role in how people’s quality of life will evolve.
Consumer electronics manufacturer Philips is revolutionizing traditional lightbulbs with its TLED lamp prototype, a new innovation in LED lighting technology.
Philips is one of the pioneers of LED bulbs that combine red, green and blue LEDs in order to create a white-colored light. The problem with this process is energy efficiency. The company presents a new product, that is by developing a tube lighting replacement bringing more quality white light at 200 lumens/watt compared to fluorescent lamps or light bulbs. The process involves combining 2 blue and one red LEDs to a green phosphor filter. One of the blue LEDs is converted to green, thereby producing white light similar to conventional LED lamps but with improved power efficiency.
The TLED has passed the requirements for a workable lighting condition which includes a color temperature of 3000-4000 Kelvin and Color Rendering Index (CRI) of at least 80. In comparison with traditional lightbulbs we use at home, a 7.5-watt TLED lamp is equivalent to a 100-watt bulb. CFLs might be the dominant choice for most households, office space and condo units that aim to conserve power but new LED lamp products seem to be a better option in the future.
The TLED lamp is certainly a step towards greener environment by conserving power without sacrificing lighting efficiency. Philips is aiming to release the final product by 2015 and expected to be priced heftier than conventional lights. Stay tuned.
Epiphany Labs has been known in the business for its main goal of creating positive changes for the development of the world. Most of their projects are famous for being solar-powered and environment friendly.
Many of the drink-lovers out there may find Epiphany’s new project very interesting. For those of you who love tinkering on your phones, whether it’s for texting, calling or checking in on your social media, you always have to worry about the battery life of your phone. This anxiety is much worse when you are out and about painting the town red.
Now, Epiphany’s new product called the One Puck may be the answer to all your woes. It is actually a coaster-sized device which charges up any mobile devices through the heat/cold emitted by cups which needs to be placed on top of the ‘puck’.
The One Puck basically makes use of centuries old concepts which result to thermo-electrics. Most of the devices making use of thermo-electrics are actually large, so the One Puck will be the first mobile charger using the age-old concept. It is able to provide up to one amp of juice in order to charge any device through the use of a USB cable. This means anyone can use the One Puck whether they tote an iPhone or an Android. Apparently, users may use either a hot object or a cold object on the device. The puck uses two sides for the different temperatures that can be used. The red side is used if you have a hot drink while the blue side is used if you have a cold drink.
As of the moment, the project’s Kickstarter page shows that it still needs about $ 65,000 for the project to reach production. The first prototype is being shown off through the video found on the page. If you are interested in helping Epiphany Labs release the product, then we suggest you head on to One Puck’s page and give your pledge. Pledges begin at $ 99 and goes up to $ 135 or more. Early birds get to have the device which is said to cost future retail buyers about $ 150. See demo below.
Definitely, game enthusiasts using iPhones will be happy with this new game controller case: the FlipSide case for iPhone! This is a concept initiated by Justice Frangipane, which is solar Bluetooth 4.0 game controller that is created as an iPhone case.
This iPhone-friendly gamepad is clipped on the back part of the iPhone case when not in use. To act as a game controller, it is also attached to the front part ready to be flipped if it is going to be used for gaming.
FlipSide controller utilizes Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), which use less power and has faster response time at 6 milliseconds compared to the 100 milliseconds of older Bluetooth connectivity. There is no need to have it plugged, docked, or electrically charged as it is solar powered. Additionally, it has built-in film rechargeable batteries , manufactured by Infinite Power Solutions, allowing the console to be used indoors.
The design is ultra-thin and light and has the ability to trickle charge through solar panels and mountable control pads. The size resembles that of the regular iPhone case and the electronics used are embedded in the case, which will not make it bulky.
This will work with iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and compatible with New iPad and iPad mini. This limited edition case is priced at $ 60 via Kickstarter and will be shipped internationally. There is no information yet on the release date.
Enter Energy Sistem i8 – a low cost and formidable entrant in the tablet market. This baby is packed with amazing features which will make the likes of Archos and Ainovo shiver. Let us lay out some of its specifications to whet your techy appetite.
The Energy Sistem i8 has an ultra-slim aluminum exterior and is a light-weight phone (weighing only 491 grams) which makes it very easy to carry. It also has 2 cameras, one at the rear with 2 Megapixel sensor and a VGA 640 x 480 front-facing shooter. In addition to that, it has HDMI (1080p) output to capture quality videos, pictures, and allow users play games on big screens!
Delving deeper, it has the latest Android OS version (Ice Cream Sandwich), and has an 8-inch multi-touch screen in HD. It features 1GB of RAM memory, 8 GB of internal memory, and still can be expanded up to 64 GB with microSD and XC cards and USB-OTG to provide easier access from the tablet’s memory through a Computer and a USB-Host to connect with other USB devices. Lastly, the i8 has Wi-Fi capabilities so you’ll never miss a minute to get the latest information.
The package includes high fidelity earphones and a handy carrying case allowing you to bring this baby anywhere you want to go. If you’re curious to get one, the Energy Sistem i8 tablet will be available by August 23rd and sets you back €185 (or roughly US$ 227).