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Dow Unveils Impressive New Powerhouse Solar Shingle System (with Photos)

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Yesterday, Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) unveiled its new line of DOW POWERHOUSE Solar Shingle. The Solar Shingle was designed to be integrated into rooftops with standard asphalt shingle materials. Dow expects the shingle systems to be available in limited quantities by mid-2010 and more widely available in 2011. And although the company says the system will provide a low-cost solar option for homeowners, we have not received any specific pricing details at this time (see below).

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Positive Energy Elithis Tower in France

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Green building certification is an interesting phenomenon.  It’s meant to convey a message about the building’s level of “green” or “sustainability,” but the message is only as strong as the system that creates it.  If you push beyond that message, you might ask: how many of these certified buildings are, say, positive energy?  That’s the goal of Elithis Tower recently opened in Dijon, France.  It has 1,600 sensors that examine energy and emissions.  This information is then displayed on a special public sign in full transparency for everyone to see.  The sign is both dynamic and clear.  

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A Positive Energy Landscape Hub

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Yes, it has a Wilson bi-fold garage door.  Yes, it has translucent photovoltaic panels that also illuminate the interior workspace.  Yes, it's heated and cooled by a geothermal system.  And yes, it's pretty much the most amazing landscape storage shed around.  Designed by Gray Organschi Architecture, this storage barn — more appropriately a storage rack that doubles as an 800 square-foot building — is the central hub for a landscape business in Washington, Connecticut. 

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How about the Simple Solar in a Box?

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The other day, Ready Solar announced the availability of this ground mount accessory for its modular Solar in a Box photovoltaic system.  The ground mount is just one more accessory that fits well with Ready Solar's line of dead simple solar products.  It bolts onto the integrated solar system and the tilt angle is established based on the distance between the front and back legs. 

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Austin’s Solar SunFlower Electric Garden

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Every now and then, you see something just knocks your socks off.  It’s either beautiful or creative or cutting-edge or all three.  And that’s what happened when I read about these solar SunFlowers created by Mags Harries and Lajos Héder for Catellus Development Company in Austin, Texas.  The permanent public art display was switched on in July and features 15 SunFlowers – photovoltaic solar collector panels on welded steel frames and stems. 

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Colorful Wavy Solar Transit Shelters

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This is a story about an interesting collaboration of five different organizations: San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), Clear Channel Outdoor, Inc., Lundberg Design, 3Form, and Konarka.  San Francisco needed to replace its existing transit locations, and the SFMTA selected Clear Channel for the contract based upon a transit shelter design by Lundberg Design.  So far, the first five of roughly 1,200 new, sustainably designed transit shelters have been installed, and ~400 of the total will be powered by roof integrated photovoltaics.  The shelters have wireless internet, NextMuni, and Push to Talk capabilities. 

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