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While we’ve seen considerable advancements in renewable energy over the last decade, the challenge of renewables is how to store the energy created from the sun or wind. As TreeHugger reports, MIT researchers have developed a how to combine the production of clean energy and its storage in offshore wind turbines. Other creative uses of renewable energy can be found in EarthTechling’s article on how lightweight solar blankets can help reduce the load carried by American soldiers. Read on to learn more about renewable energy innovations.
Today, on the 60th anniversary of the historic first ascent of Mount Everest, mountaineer and filmmaker David Breashears and his foundation GlacierWorks have teamed up with Internet Explorer to launch Everest: Rivers of Ice. This immersive, exploration platform allows visitors to travel the peaks and valleys of the Everest region through sweeping multi-touch HTML5 panoramas and interactive features that brings the area to life and, most importantly, highlights the dramatic changes to the area’s surrounding glaciers.
Innovative technology can influence business and the environment, while having a clear impact on society as well. For a technology company like Microsoft, that’s the promise of applying technology to address environmental challenges. The Guardian is introducing a new online hub that looks squarely at technology innovation and implementation from a social standpoint, while this week Forbes looked at how the smart grid is increasingly becoming a reality for U.S. utilities and consumers. Read on to learn more about how IT is reshaping how people are using energy and resources, ultimately reducing their footprint on the world.
The green building game is changing. A recent McGraw-Hill Construction SmartMarket Report characterized the green building movement as one that has shifted from ‘push’ to ‘pull,’ as companies around the world are recognizing both the environmental and the business value of sustainable, energy efficient buildings. Similar to fuel efficiency ratings for vehicles, rating and disclosing the energy performance of buildings is becoming increasingly common around the world. For that reason, predicting a future building’s energy consumption before breaking ground is important for optimizing building designs and developing these ratings. But predicting a building’s energy consumption requires energy-use simulation on a scale that most architecture firms can’t achieve without a research lab and enormous computing power. At Microsoft, we’re working to change that.
The experiments of today are the innovations of the future. Scientific American profiled the work of Mark Jacobson and Mark Delucchi, two scientists keen on discovering ways to power the world without fossil fuels who have pioneered plans that show how communities can get energy exclusively from renewable sources. Meanwhile, the Financial Times looks at how the MIT Media Lab is passionately developing projects that range from robo-cars to bionics. Read on to hear more about how today’s tinkerers are setting the stage for the sustainable society of tomorrow.