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New Cree LED Downlights Are a No Brainer

In July 2012, Cree announced brighter LED downlights in the CR Series.  The CR4-575L fits a 4″ housing and delivers 575 lumens, 90 CRI, 2700 Kelvin, dimming up to 5%, and 50,000 hours while only using 9.5 watts of energy.  The CR6-800L fits a 6″ housing and delivers 800 lumens, 90 CRI, 2700 Kelvin, dimming up to 5%, and 50,000 hours while only using 12 watts of energy.  Both are Energy Star qualified and they’re available in either the Edison or GU24-type bases.  The CR4 sells for about $53, and the CR6 sells for about $55 (both at EarthLED).

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Hulger Intros Baby Plumen CFL Lightbulb

Today Hulger announced the new Baby Plumen 001, a designer CFL light bulb that tracks the original Plumen 001.  It’s a smaller 9-watt bulb that’s meant to replace a 40-watt incandescent.  The 220-volt version is available today through Plumen.com, while the 120-volt version, which is compatible in North America, will be available later this year.  The Baby Plumen lasts about 8,000 hours and has a color temperature of 2700 Kelvin.

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The Greenest Home in the World [Video]

I was noodling some recent journalist potshots about headlines for “the greenest …” when I landed on this video piece from the Nightly News. NBC’s Kiko Itasaki wonders if this home in Unst, one of the northern Shetland Islands of Scotland, is the greenest in the world. Everyone knows the question has no answer, but I think Michael and Dorothy Rea have accomplished something worth noticing that’s for sure.

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SmartThings is a Universal Smart System

There’s an interesting Kickstarter campaign right now for an innovation called SmartThings.  SmartThings is a Minnesota-based company and an open platform to connect everyday things to the internet to monitor, control, and automate.  The company wants to add “intelligence to everyday things in your world, so that your life can be more awesome.”  It consists of a hub, “things,” maker tools, a cloud platform, and mobile app.

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Wood-Panel Passivhaus in British Columbia

Marken Projects is working on another Passive House in British Columbia.  This 3,500-square-foot home, made with a panelized prefab system like the Rainbow Duplex, will house two families and three generations under the same roof in Surrey, British Columbia.  The aim is an affordable structure that uses 90% less energy for heating and cooling than a standard home.  It’ll have triple-pane windows, an HRV, solar hot water, rainwater harvesting, no-VOC materials, and the ultra-efficient and airtight shell.   Construction will take about five months, and I’ll provide an update with more detail at that time.

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LEED Platinum Avant Garage in Fishtown

This is Avant Garage, a four-unit residential project by Postgreen Homes in Fishtown Proper.  Designed by Interface Studio Architects, these homes are targeting LEED Platinum and Postgreen’s President Chad Ludeman tells me he can see no reason why they won’t achieve that level of certification (just like the 100k House which also took home the USGBC’s 2010 LEED-H Project of the Year).  Here’s a little background on this stunning new development in Philadelphia:

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