A retail chain known for its friendly greeters and low prices has taken a bold step to reduce the cost of powering its famously large stores. Retail giant Walmart has announced that 130 of its stores in California will be powered by the sun by the year 2013.
Once only a luxury item for the wealthy, home automation technology that integrates a house’s electrical and low-voltage devices is becoming more commonplace in U.S. residences. Previously, its adoption was sluggish because of the installation complexity and high cost.
It’s the nature of technology to continually break new ground. As one innovation catches on, another follows closely on its heels. For example, just as the smart grid is gaining traction, another new form of smart technology is poised for a breakthrough of its own.
The way some people tell it, a dramatic decline in construction fatalities can be attributed to only one thing: high unemployment and a decrease in building activity during the economic downturn, resulting in fewer people being exposed to hazards on construction sites. Those people are wrong.
Lighting represents a substantial portion of the annual energy use and expense of any commercial building despite building owner and occupant energy -conservation and efficiency efforts. According to the U.S.
Tornadoes, earthquakes, hurricanes, unprecedented rainfalls and record-high 500-year flooding levels in 2011 have all together caused massive damage to the grid, homes, businesses and public infrastructure and billions in damage costs.
In the first quarter of next year, SAE International plans to establish a standard, integrated coupler that would allow electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to be charged from either a conventional, 15-amp alternating current (AC) wall outlet or a direct current (DC) connector of
Some things in education remain the same--—it’s all still really about reading, writing and arithmetic. But the way those and other subjects are taught has evolved significantly since many of us spent time in a classroom.
In the never-ending quest to find new, more energy-efficient lighting technologies, light-emitting diodes (LEDs) have always held great promise. Like so many other technologies with great potential, making them cost-competitive has been the challenge.
From microwave ovens to Humvees, the military has a long history of developing and fine-tuning new technologies that later become accessible to the general public. To be sure, some have flopped while others have become household necessities.
In the quest for more widespread adoption of energy-efficiency measures, cost is one of the biggest challenges, as it is for so many of the new technologies considered integral to green building. However, in one state, officials may have found a solution.
In late July, utilities across the country issued notices to their customers, pleading with them to minimize energy use during the projected heat wave—a prolonged period in which every state in the country broke heat records.
It’s a generally accepted belief that people tend to be wary of things that are unfamiliar to them, so it would make sense this behavior would extend to the smart grid and smart meters, a relatively new trend in an industry on which most consumers are not educated.
Sometimes, big change comes in small steps. For example, consumers have long since bought, literally and figuratively, into the notion that they can do their part to save energy by making seemingly innocuous changes to their daily lives, such as purchasing only compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).
Black & Veatch, a consultancy company, evaluated a one-year smart meter pilot program for ComEd, the Chicago-area utility. They found customers of the utility could save $2.8 billion on their electric bills over the 20-year life of a smart meter.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published a report that promised to shake up the broadband world. To some extent, the report, “Measuring Broadband America,” provided results that weren’t very surprising but still good to see on paper.
In mid-July, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) placed the last two transmission lines, both from Widows Creek Fossil Plant, back in service 74 days after sustaining unprecedented damage due to severe storms and tornadoes in April on its power transmission system.