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Emilio-thumb.png Emilio Velis has been appointed the new Executive Director of the Appropedia Foundation! Read more...


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An LED traffic light
LED traffic light FAQ. Here are a number of frequently asked questions concerning retrofitting street lights with LEDs. For full information see LED.

What does an LED traffic light look like? An LED traffic light looks very similar to a regular traffic light. It still gets the job done and is actually brighter. An LED is actually very small and therefore the traffic light is made up of a bunch of smaller lights, this is apparent when you look closely. The color of the light depends on the exact composition inside the bulb.
Who Invented the LED? It all began when Oleg Vladimirovich created the first LED in 1927. There was no practical use for it until 1962 when it was discovered that the infrared LED could be changed into a visible red LED.
How does an LED work? An LED is basically a tiny light bulb with a semiconductor diode in place of a filament. Inside the diode, there are positively and negatively charged areas. When a voltage is applied to the diode with the positive end hooked up to the negative area and the negative end hooked up to the positive area the electrons inside become excited and jump from the positively charged to negatively charged areas. This interaction produces light.
What is a diode? A diode is a component that restricts the directional flow of charge carriers. In other words, a diode allows an electric current to flow in one direction, but blocks it in the opposite direction.

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Photovoltaic vaccine refrigeration at Centro De Salud

Building a solar powered (photovoltaic) vaccine refrigerator with a community hospital in Northern Mexico. Now the sun helps keep the vaccines consistently cold.

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Community action news

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Oct 15 Visions: The Sustainable Future Town of Your Imagination [1]

Oct 13 Don’t frack with us: meet the victorious activist ‘Nanas’ of Lancashire [2]

Oct 10 Community involvement UK news: Becoming Unstuck With Relational Activism [3]

Oct 3 Climate news 2019: What does Greta Thunberg's call for equity mean? [4]

Sep 19 Climate news 2019: For the sake of life on Earth, we must put a limit on wealth, George Monbiot [5]

Read More...


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Geoff Lawton
You can solve all the world's problems in a garden.

Geoff LawtonW
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A windmill is used to power a water pump which fills a swimming pool.
Appropriate technology (AT) is technology that is designed with special consideration to the context of its use - including environmental, ethical, cultural, social, political, and economical aspects of the community it is intended for. With these goals in mind, AT proponents claim their methods require fewer resources, are easier to maintain, and have less of an impact on the environment compared to techniques from mainstream technology, which they contend is wasteful and environmentally polluting.

The term is usually used to describe simple technologies proponents consider suitable for use in developing nations or less developed rural areas of industrialized nations. This form of "appropriate technology" usually prefers labor-intensive solutions over capital-intensive ones, although labor-saving devices are also used where this does not mean high capital or maintenance cost. In practice, appropriate technology is often something described as using the simplest level of technology that can effectively achieve the intended purpose in a particular location. In industrialized nations, the term appropriate technology takes a different meaning, often referring to engineering that takes special consideration of its social and environmental ramifications.

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Engr305 Appropriate Technology Projects: Below are selected service learning projects from Engr305 Appropriate Technology, which is a course on appropriate technology at Humboldt State University taught by instructor Lonny Grafman.

AEF food dehydrator

A solar dehydrator to help preserve surplus crops  
AEF greywater

Greywater system at the CSA, Arcata Educational Farm  
AEF informational kiosk

An earthen informational kiosk  
AEF photovoltaic system

Modified off-grid photovoltaic system  
AEF solar water heater

Improved solar water heating system  
AEF spiral herb garden

Restored the existing herb spiral  
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