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Solar Tower of Power to Spain and Abu Dhabi

Torresol Tower

I just noticed fresh news of this newly formed company called Torresol that’s developing a Solar Tower of Power for both  Spain and Abu Dhabi.  It’s cool news and interesting technology, but it strikes me: Does anyone want to use their celebrity or political influence to bring more of these to the U.S.?  Hillary?  Obama?  Gore?  Buffett?  Pickens?  There’s a ton a raw land in Arizona, Utah, Nevada, Texas, etc., and any given state could take a stab at a plan with transmission lines, right?  I know we talked about an EnviroMission tower before, but I haven’t seen any movement on that front.  It might take a green blogger coalition to get more of these built, but if we can’t figure it out, we’re going to see a new generation of dollars going to the same group of people.  If you know what I mean …

A concentrating solar concentrating power plant like the one pictured above could generate power for something like 30,000 homes (17 mw).

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Anti-Smog Design with Solar Drop + Wind Tower [S2]

Antismogparis

Anti-Smog is a prototype project envisioned for a post-industrial area of Paris that aims to invent a new architecture — auto-sufficient, depolluting architecture, reactive to its environment.  The Vincent Callebaut Architectures prototype relies heavily on building-integrated, green innovation such as vertical axis wind turbines, rooftop solar panels, and living walls and greenery.  The result is a design that not only borders on positive energy as a self-sufficient structure, but one that moves into a refreshing realm of natural architecture that can clean and replenish the surrounding air.

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SMIT GROW Solar and Wind Facades

Grow .1

Green start-up companies are doing some crazy things, and this company, SMIT, is certainly one to watch.  SMIT, an acronym for Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology, spent the last two years in R&D with this interesting approach to solar and wind power.  SMIT's GROW product has two iterations, GROW.1 and GROW.2, pictured above and below. 

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Hawaii Gateway Energy Center, a Fascinating Display of Solar Potential

HGEC

The Hawaii Gateway Energy Center (HGEC) is a 3,600 sf, $3.4 million facility situated on the south coast of Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii.  The new building serves both the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii and the Hawaii Ocean Sciences and Technology Park.  And as you may be able to gather from the images and models below, HGEC is a fascinating display of the future potential for synergies of solar power and building efficiencies.  The entire building is designed as a thermal chimney that captures heat and creates air movement using the structural form and thermodynamic principles.  Also, with the help of glazing, the building orientation and design pretty much eliminates the need for electric lighting during the day.  Notably, HGEC consumes about 20% of the energy that’s required by a comparable building. 

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Independence Station, #1 Highest Scoring LEED Building

Independence Station

This is going to be a cool development when it’s complete.  Slated to be the #1 highest scoring LEED building in the world by a fair margin (meaning: Platinum Certification at 64-66 points), Independence Station is 35% complete and should beat Oregon’s strict energy code by about 74%.  Steven Ribeiro, developer and principal at Aldeia Development, energetically remarks on his project: "This retro-futuristic, mixed-use building will run on 100% renewable energy, primarily vegetable oil and the sun."  Sounds good to me. 

Here’s a list of some of the green features planned for Independence Station:

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Seagull Streetlamp, Micro Green Tech That Inspires

This is just another example of micro-green technology in an entirely necessary and functional setting.  The video shows a streetlight running on both wind and solar in front of Panasonic Center in Tokyo.  In addition to the helix turbine and butterfly solar panels, there’s a high-efficiency light bulb and battery for capturing energy during the day (to be used at night).  Someone tell me why we don’t see more any of this in the U.S.?  Via EcoGeek.

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