Because it costs less, that's why. If you're the type of rugged individualist who builds computers from scratch (well, almost), then you know that shipping can be the difference between a bargain and a waste of time. So Aopen Asia is making tower cases that fold up and save space, resulting in lower packing and shipping costs, according to OhGizmo. This way, the company says it can fit twice as many cases in a standard shipping container. There are no guarantees, of course, that the savings will be passed along to the consumer. (We can be so cynical … Read more
Battery maker A123 Systems is off to a blistering 2007. Earlier in the year, General Motors said it would evaluate the company's lithium ion batteries for its coming Saturn Green Line Vue hybrid.
This week, the company announced it has received $40 million in venture funds from, among others, General Electric and Procter and Gamble.
So far, the company has raised $102 million.
Being a battery maker a few years ago was no bargain. Battery technology improves about six to seven percent a year, slow by Silicon Valley standards. And they are batteries for god's sakes. Mention that … Read more
Biodiesel manufacturer Imperium Renewables will open up a plant that can produce 100 million gallons of biodiesel a year, said Martin Tobias, CEO of Imperium in a meeting at the Clean Tech Investor Summit, which took place this week in Palm Desert, Calif.
That's going to nearly double the U.S. output of biodiesel, he said. Only about 150 million gallons got produced in the U.S. last year. Imperium itself only has the capacity right now to make 5 million gallons.
Overall, it's a drop in the bucket of the diesel market, he admitted. 62 billion gallons … Read more
Tesla Motors will sell batteries to a Scandinavian company, Th!nk Global, which makes an economy car, executives said today at the Clean-Tech Investor Summit in Palm Desert, Calif.
Martin Eberhard, CEO of Tesla Motors, said that Tesla has formed a group called Tesla Energy Now to sell battery packs to other companies.
"A certain unnamed Scandinavian electric car company has become a customer," he said.
Sitting two seats down on the panel was Jan-Olaf Willums, president of Th!nk Global, which bought an experimental electric car called the Think from Ford in 2006. His company will start … Read more
If you've ever ridden regularly on San Francisco's Muni system, you'd probably be willing to take your chances on a driverless bus. Safety is a relative thing.
A prototype of one such vehicle will soon be on display at the Science Museum in London, where it could be tested in the next few years. The bus, designed jointly by Capoco Design and the Royal College of Art, is an electric drive and bio-fuel hybrid that would be guided by satellite navigation, intelligent cruise control and magnets embedded in city streets, according to BornRich.
Best of all, passengers … Read more
If there's one thing everyone agrees on, it's that we all need a better way to charge the multiplying electronic devices that run our lives. One of the more anticipated technologies in this department, for example, has been the "WildCharger" wireless recharging pad. Herman Miller, the office furnishing designer extraordinaire that gave us the "Aeron" chair, has apparently a concept similar to the WildCharger's and plans to use it in future desks.
The good news is that the public likes the idea of ethanol and alternative fuels, according to a survey from Pavillion Technologies. The bad news is they can't find it and don't know they are using it.
The company, which develops software for making ethanol operations run more efficiency, recently conducted a consumer survey which found that 47 percent of Americans would pay a premium for biofuels like ethanol. 59 percent of Americans also consider dependence on foreign oil imports a big problem for the U.S.
Only five percent of Americans, however, think they actually consume ethanol. … Read more
Take, for example, the "Intelligent Oven" by TMIO: It can refrigerate and cook in the same space, which can be controlled over the Internet or cell phone. And lest you think all this is some cheap parlor trick, Gizmodo says the uber-oven employs "NASA-based command and control engineering," as well as "green" technologies developed by the space agency. If you'… Read more
When I first saw the pictures of this house on Make Magazine's blog, I thought they were straight off the sets of one of the Lord of the Rings movies. Seriously, doesn't it look like the kind of place where you could open the door and expect to see see Elijah Wood and Dominic Monaghan inside sporting prosthetic foot fur? But, no, it's actually a "low-impact woodland home" in Wales that was built at a total cost of 3,000 pounds (a little under $6,000) and 1,000-1,500 man-hours over a period of … Read more
The future of light is plastic, says Cyberlux.
The company, which specializes in light emitting diodes (LEDs, will come out with prototypes of a new type of white light LEDs in about four months that will cost substantially less to manufacture than conventional LEDs and provide more light at the same time.
In conventional white light LEDs, a semiconductor emits blue light. The blue light passes through the phosphor and becomes white light. The phosphor is thin film on a substrate; the substrate has to be placed in intricate proximity to the semiconductor. Positioning the phosphor is one of the … Read more