Solar Powered Clothing

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Back to the Future II is one of those movies that continue to influence our imagination even though it was released way back in 1989. It foretold a bunch of advancements that we would have by the year 2015, some of which came very close to coming true, some not so much. The movie also inspired a nanotechnology scientist at the University of Central Florida’s NanoScience Technology Center, Associate Professor Jayan Thomas, to try and create solar powered textiles. And he has now succeeded, so something like self-lacing shoes as worn by Marty McFly in the movie could well be available soon.

Thomas has successfully developed solar-powered filaments, which are able to harvest energy from the sun and store it. They can also be woven into textiles to create smart textiles, which would basically be a type of wearable solar-powered batteries. These batteries could then be used to charge our gadgets, while they’d also be able to perform various other functions. (more…)

By |April 14th, 2017|Green Tech|0 Comments

Tiny House Made of Cork

Ecobubo, a Portuguese startup, has recently completed a tiny dwelling of the same name that’s made of cork. The primary function of this tiny house is to serve as a nature escape for two, since the home is located in the woods and lacks the space and amenities, which would make it suitable as a full-time home. (more…)

By |April 13th, 2017|Modern design|0 Comments

Tiny Home That Can Withstand a Hurricane

Tiny homes aren’t exactly known for being weather-resilient but the so-called Amsterdam 24, made by Transcend Tiny Homes of Tennessee, is an exception. This home offers plenty of storage, is lightweight and towable, and can withstand high winds.

The Amsterdam 24 rests atop a 24 ft (7.3 m)-long double-axle trailer, which is where it gets its name from. The interior measures 292 sq ft (27 sq m), and since its walls are made of fiberglass composite it only weighs 8,340 lbs (3,782 kg), which is about one third the weight of a typical wood frame tiny home. The composite walls were made by a special technique, which involves laminating two high strength phenolic resin based fiberglass skins onto a foam core. This means that a standard 8 x 10 ft (2.4 x 3 m) wall section takes 115,000 lbs (52,163 kg) of pressure. They fuse the layers into the wall panel using a foaming gorilla type glue and in this way the fiberglass skin acts as a sort of exoskeleton of the shell. (more…)

By |April 4th, 2017|Modern design|0 Comments

Vacation Home That Changes Shape According to the Weather

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Architect Michael Jantzen has come up with a concept for a vacation home, which would allow the residents to change it’s shape according to what is best in any type of weather condition. The so-called Malleable Autonomous Retreat House would also function completely independent of the grid, and it certainly embodies a very novel and futuristic idea when it comes to home design. (more…)

By |March 27th, 2017|Modern design|0 Comments

Bus Converted Into a Cozy Full-Time Mobile Home

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While the idea of living mortgage-free and downsizing might not quite be mainstream yet, it has been getting more and more recognition and acceptance as a way of living. Will Hitchcock and Alyssa Pelletier of Outside Found represent a great example of two brave people who not only made it work, but did so in style.

Both Will and Alyssa were once employed by start-ups in Silicon Valley, which was a very stressful time for them. Being lovers of the outdoors, they soon found themselves feeling cramped and unhappy. They solved the problem by leaving their respective jobs, moving to Boulder, Colorado, and starting their own tech consulting company. They also wanted to work remotely while travelling, and to realize that dream, they turned a 2001 GMC Bluebird bus into a home on wheels. They bought the 38-foot-long (11.6 m) bus off Craigslist and did most of the renovation themselves, despite not having any previous construction experience. The process took four months, and according to Alyssa, each day offered a new challenge to overcome. (more…)

By |March 22nd, 2017|Modern design|0 Comments

London Will Get Europe’s Largest Floating Solar Array

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Following the example of Japan, which has already begun constructing numerous floating solar arrays to meet it’s renewable energy goals, UK’s Thames Water has now announced plans to do the same. They are already building what will be the largest floating solar array in Europe, and they plan to install it on a reservoir in London. This project is part of Thames Water’s goal of finding solutions to generate one third of its own energy from renewable sources by 2020. (more…)

By |March 20th, 2017|Green Tech|0 Comments