News Roundup

News Roundup

Reading news is one of my favorite hobbies (it even probably ranks higher than watching TV). Below are some recent items related to the electrical industry that I found interesting.

Captain Planet would approve: USA Today says that Oregon is getting the first U.S. commercial wave energy farm. I was surprised by the size of the buoys; the first one will be 150’ x 40’ and 200 tons. The expectation is that it will harness enough power for 400 homes. I’m curious to see the results of this initiative.

Majoring in the future of electricity: A college in Cincinnati will be offering a major in Smart Grid starting this fall. Considering how quickly the Smart Grid movement is growing, a lot of other schools will probably follow suit. This came earlier than I would have guessed, though.

Kick the light on: I recently heard about a rather athletic energy storage idea—a soccer ball that harnesses the energy from being kicked and thrown around and becomes a power source. Funny name, too—sOccket.

The how to of wind turbines: I liked DOE’s explanation of how wind turbines work. Neat fact: nacelles can be big enough for a helicopter to land on.

A PHEV’s footprint: I enjoyed thinking about the questions posed by Autoblog Green and AllCarsElectric about taxes for electric and hybrid cars. A lot of road construction is paid for by fuel taxes, and this new wave of cars will be purchasing a lot less gasoline—in some cases, none at all. I’m not sure where I stand on this. With more than 250 million registered cars in the U.S., this could become a costly problem, assuming that people switch over to new green options. Potholes wouldn’t be fun in any car.

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