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Revision as of 14:34, 2 December 2015

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Solar heater
Solar hot water describes active and passive solar technologies that utilize the sun’s freely abundant solar thermal energy in order to heat water for a desired application. It is one of the most efficient ways to heat water (in terms of energy/waste), as it requires no energy conversion, unlike electric-resistance heating or fuel burning. It is a simple transfer and concentration of heat energy from one place to another. Another interpretation of the efficiency of the practice is that the solar energy is free, and only dependent on the extent of the technology used, and its cost and efficiency. In other words, the energy is free, only the collection, conversion, and storage devices cost.

If you have ever felt hot water trickle out of a garden hose that’s been sitting in the sun, you’ve experienced solar hot water in action. Essentially, a solar hot water system is made up of a solar thermal collector, a well-insulated storage container, and a system for transferring the heat from the collector to the container vis-à-vis a fluid medium, which in some circumstances is the water to be used itself.

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Fixable Infant Incubator

A safe incubator that will be used in local health centers in deveoping countries.

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E. F. Schumacher
Perhaps we cannot raise the winds. But each of us can put up the sail, so that when the wind comes we can catch it.

The Sun photographed by the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA 304) of NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).
Solar energy, radiant light and heat from the sun, has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. Solar radiation, along with secondary solar-powered resources such as wind and wave power, hydroelectricity and biomass, account for most of the available renewable energy on earth. Only a minuscule fraction of the available solar energy is used.

Solar powered electrical generation relies on heat engines and photovoltaics. Solar energy's uses are limited only by human ingenuity. A partial list of solar applications includes space heating and cooling through solar architecture, potable water via distillation and disinfection, daylighting, solar hot water, solar cooking, and high temperature process heat for industrial purposes.To harvest the solar energy, the most common way is to use solar panels.

Solar technologies are broadly characterized as either passive solar or active solar depending on the way they capture, convert and distribute solar energy. Active solar techniques include the use of photovoltaic panels and solar thermal collectors to harness the energy. Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air.

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ENGR 215 Introduction to Design projects – Fall 2011: Flock House: The Fall 2011 semester of ENGR215 Introduction to Design worked with the Flock House to research, design, and build sustainable and inspiring systems for two living systems that will be traveling through and interacting with various New York neighborhoods.

Fall 2011 ENGR 215 Intro to Design Projects - Flock House
Plastic Plumage and Bird Cage
Corrugated plastic shell and one gallon milk carton shingles  
Aluminum Awareness
Aluminum can shingles and 2-liter bottle windows  
Poly Pod
Doors, windows, and planters made from ironed plastic bags and bubble-wrap, with umbrella awnings  
Geared-Up From the Feet-Up
Bicycle powered generator capable of generating 100+ Watts  
Pump'n Power
A handcar styled, two person, human powered, energy generator  
Hyper Visible Power Meter
A post-apocalyptic, bomb-like, display for the state of the Flock House batteries  
Window Shopper and Back Me Up
Flock House solar dehydrator and backpack solar dehydrator  
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