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The latest round-up of energy-efficiency projects and innovations from Australia and around the world.

University buildings to chill out in Sydney

The University of Technology Sydney (UTS) will cool several of its city-campus buildings by piping in chilled air from a nearby district cooling system. District heating or cooling is rare in Australia, and UTS and the cooling provider Brookfield Energy say the new project is a first in the country.

Source: One Step Off The Grid

See: University buildings to chill out in Sydney

Where to for industrial, business and home heat?

There is exciting potential to cut the emissions from burning fuels by measures including improved energy efficiency, rethinking industrial processes to reduce the need for heat, and switching from gas and oil to high efficiency electric technologies driven by renewable electricity.

Source: Renew Economy

See: Where to for industrial, business and home heat?

Green battery electrodes from beer wastewater

Seven barrels of wastewater are used for every barrel of beer produced. Researchers in the US have devised a method of biologically treating the water to create ‘one of the most efficient naturally-derived lithium-ion battery electrodes known to date.’

Source: New Atlas

Source: Green battery electrodes from beer wastewater

Renewables are getting cheaper all the time

New technologies such as battery storage could revolutionise long-standing business models. With smart management, the transitions away from fossil fuels could offer greater job opportunities.

Source: The Conversation

See: Renewables are getting cheaper all the time

Solar power towers for South Australia

US solar company SolarReserve has unveiled plans to build six large solar tower power plants with molten salt storage in South Australia. The power plants could account for one quarter of the state’s power needs, stabilise power prices due to nil fuel cost, and provide 24,000 jobs during construction.

Source: RenewEconomy

See: Solar power towers for South Australia

Business Research and Innovation Initiative

The Australian Government is encouraging businesses to develop more innovative solutions to government policy and service delivery problems. Entrepreneurs will receive funding to create new products and innovations that meet defined government needs, while retaining their intellectual property and the right to commercialise the ideas in Australia or overseas.

Source: National Innovation and Science Agenda

See: Business Research and Innovation Initiative

Crocodile Dundee pub goes solar in remote Queensland

The outback hotel made famous in the 1986 movie ‘Crocodile Dundee’ has gone solar. The 24-panel installation is expected to produce 11,250 kWh a year, more than covering the pub’s total energy needs and saving over $3,000 on annual energy costs.

Source: One Step Off The Grid

See: Crocodile Dundee pub goes solar in remote Queensland

Kangaroo Island bounds towards 100% renewables

Ten local electricity supply scenarios were modelled as alternative sources of power for Kangaroo Island. ‘The most cost-effective alternative is a local supply of wind, solar photovoltaics and diesel generation, complemented by battery storage and demand management,’ said Director of the Institute for Sustainable Futures, Chris Dunstan.

Source: University of Technology, Sydney via Phys.org

See: Kangaroo Island on full power via renewables

The air conditioner that makes electricity

A new hybrid device could significantly reduce the power required to cool commercial buildings. Owners could see a huge reduction in energy costs from installing the innovative system, which runs on natural gas.

Source: Scientific American

See: The air conditioner that makes electricity

Energy Insights Survey 2016: findings

Findings from the Energy Insights Survey indicate businesses showed greater understanding of the many aspects of energy management. Respondents also experienced growing confidence and increased self-reliance in their own energy-management capabilities. The primary finding is that energy management is becoming a core strategic imperative, with the focus shifting from cost-cutting to growth.

Source: Energy action

See: Energy Insights Survey 2016

Getting the right LEDs

All LEDs are not the same, and smart energy managers do a lot of due diligence to make sure they buy and install those that won’t prematurely fail or even create dangerous situations.

Source: Energy Manager Today

See: Finding the right LEDs

Singapore steps up efforts to boost energy efficiency

Businesses in Singapore are increasing their efforts to take up and promote energy efficiency. ‘Improving energy efficiency will bring about multiple benefits for companies and continues to be an important forward-looking strategy to create competitive advantages,’ said Ronnie Tay, CEO of Singapore’s National Environment Agency.

Source: The Business Times

See: Singapore steps up efforts to boost energy efficiency

New braking resistor increases vehicle energy efficiency

A specialised new resistor has been developed for braking systems in hybrid and electrical vehicles. Using a water-cooled design, braking energy dissipated as heat can be efficiently reused through a heat transfer. Footprint is also up to 88% smaller than conventional air-cooled resistors.

Source: EETimes Europe

See: Water-cooled braking resistor increases vehicle energy efficiency

Why Australia – Benchmark Report 2016

The Australian Trade and Investment Commission has released Why Australia - Benchmark Report 2016. The report examines five key reasons for investing in Australia—growth, innovation, talent, location and business—and compares Australia’s credentials with other countries.

Source: Australian Trade and Investment Commission

See: Why Australia - Benchmark Report 2016

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