It’s become increasingly common to hear the term
“zero energy” or “zero carbon” used to describe buildings that achieve complete energy sustainability by generating as...
The first misconception about going solar is that it is expensive.
While the Western world forgets its waste with a flush, 2.6 billion people don’t even have toilets. Virginia Gardiner ventures to the World Toilet Summit in search of sanitation’s future.
Kiel Moe, assistant professor of architectural technology at Harvard University, specializes in architecture and energy issues. “As fuel prices fluctuate,” he says, “you’re...
Probably the most evocative term among the otherwise technocratic energy vocabulary, vampire power is the continuous current that appliances and electronics draw from an outlet even when turned off.
Sunlight transportation systems are the pinnacle of innovation in energy-efficient design.
Bees have always been admired for their industrious nature and intricate honeycomb architecture; Charles Darwin called the honeycomb “absolutely perfect” as a feat of engineering, symmetry, and...
Interested in running more than just your home on the sun’s rays? Here’s a handy introduction to some of the most innovative solar goods available.
When we think of alternative energy at home, our minds leap straight to solar panels, the most obvious symbol of a site-generated grid-free power source.
Every hour, enough sunlight hits the earth to power the entire planet for a year. But since they’re pricey—and, let’s face it, generally unattractive—solar cells are still woefully underutilized...
As more and more Americans are quickly discovering, the land beneath our feet is not quite as solid as we thought. Houses slip down hillsides, trees float down rivers, and whole cities disappear...
Taking advantage of Southern California’s sunny skies, architect David Hertz ingrained
passive solar features in almost every detail
of the Panel House for client Thomas Ennis.
We don’t keep a kettle boiling on the stove all day for the one moment when we want tea, so why do we keep water heated around the clock when all we need it for is a shower or a load of laundry?
Envious of the energy savings accrued by neighbors with solar panels on their roofs, but unsure how to go about putting up your own panels? Jennifer Roberts writes about the how, where, and why of...
Product design that takes cues from nature, known as biomimicry, has produced a num-
ber of ingenious and popular products we use every day.
Americans have always held a soft spot in their hearts for futuristic materials, from the amazing light-weight properties of titanium to the chance to conquer Superman with kryptonite.
The standard pear-shaped incandescent bulb thatmost of us have been using for ages has a bad reputation among environmentalists as an energy hog.
Hammers and nails are out, friends, and as the (patent) pending nanotech revolution shows, manufacturing is on the eve of the atom.
If necessity is the mother of invention, then the coupled concerns of population growth and resource depletion might be considered the parents of energy innovation.