If you want to take your network connection to a far corner of the house where the wireless signal can't reach, the best way to get this done is with a pair of PowerLine adapters. These little devices basically extend the network connection through the electrical wiring of the house and turn any power socket into a network port.
Generally, you need at least two adapters to make a PowerLine connection. Each adapter can be plugged into a wall power socket and each also has a network port. Once plugged in the wall socket, the adapters will have power … Read more
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Twenty years ago it appeared, for a moment, that all our energy problems could be solved. It was the announcement of cold fusion--nuclear energy like that which powers the sun--but at room temperature on a table top. It promised to be cheap, limitless, and clean. Cold fusion would end our dependence on the Middle East and stop those greenhouse gases blamed for global warming. It would change everything.
But then, just as quickly as it was announced, it was discredited. So thoroughly, that cold fusion became a catch phrase for junk science. Well, a funny thing happened on the way to oblivion--for many scientists today, cold fusion is hot again.
"We can yield the power of nuclear physics on a tabletop. The potential is unlimited. That is the most powerful energy source known to man," researcher Michael McKubre told "60 Minutes" correspondent Scott Pelley.
McKubre says he has seen that energy more than 50 times in cold fusion experiments he's doing at SRI International, a respected California lab that does extensive work for the government.
McKubre is an electrochemist who imagines, in 20 years, the creation of a clean nuclear battery. "For example, a laptop would come precharged with all of the energy that you would ever intend to use. You're now decoupled from your charger and the wall socket," he explained.
The same would go for cars. "The potential is for an energy source that would run your car for three, four years, for example. And you'd take it in for service every four years and they'd give you a new power supply," McKubre told Pelley.
"Power stations?" Pelley asked.
"You can imagine a one for one plug-in replacement for nuclear fuel rods. And the difference only would be that at the end of the lifetime of that fuel rod, you didn't have radioactive waste that needed to be disposed of," McKubre replied.
He showed "60 Minutes" just how simple the experiment looks; there are only three main ingredients. First, there is palladium, a metal in the platinum family. Second, one needs a kind of hydrogen called deuterium which is found in seawater.
"Deuterium is essentially unlimited. There is ten times as much energy in a gallon of sea water, from the deuterium contained within it, than there is in a gallon of gasoline," he explained.
The palladium is placed in water containing deuterium and the third ingredient is an electric current.
The experiment is wrapped in insulation and instruments. They're looking for what they call "excess heat." In other words, is more energy coming out than the electric current puts in?
No one knows exactly how excess heat would be generated, but McKubre showed "60 Minutes" what he thinks is happening. … Read more
The City of Miami announced a proposal on Monday to install 1 million two-way "smart meters" to all Miami residents over the next two years in what would be the most comprehensive smart-grid program in the U.S.
Mayor Manny Diaz outlined the Energy Smart Miami plan, which is anticipated to cost $200 million in its first phase, at a press conference at Miami Dade College. Joining Diaz were the CEOs of the key suppliers in the project: Florida Power & Light CEO Lewis Hay, General Electric CEO Jeffery Immelt, Cisco systems CEO John Chambers, and SilverSpring Networks … Read more
The idea behind Belkin's Conserve surge protector is pretty simple. Instead of having your electronics sit there in standby mode and each sip a little bit of power, the Conserve lets you completely shut down components so power drain is cut to zero. At the same time, it leaves two outlets active for those products that you indeed want to keep on (or leave in standby mode)--items such as DVRs, wireless routers, fax machines, and cordless phones.
Two models are available: a shorter strip with a total of eight outlets and a longer one with a total of … Read more
The Obama administration announced new plans on Thursday to kick-start smart-grid development, including funding details and the start of a standardization process.
During a visit to Jefferson City, Mo., Vice President Joe Biden detailed plans for the U.S. Department of Energy to distribute more than $3.3 billion in stimulus funds for smart-grid technology development grants. Additionally, the Energy Department will hand out $615 million for regional demonstration projects that exhibit smart-grid storage, monitoring and technology viability.
"We need an upgraded electrical grid to take full advantage of the vast renewable resources in this country--to take the wind … Read more
Waste heat from a new data center being built in London Docklands will power nearby homes and businesses, the company behind the project says.
The Telehouse West facility, which is due for completion in 2010, is being built by Telehouse Europe alongside the WSP Group, a sustainability consultancy. Work has started on the new data center, which will be nine stories high and provide 19,000 square meters of floor space.
In its announcement on Wednesday, Telehouse Europe said the $91 million data center would provide up to 9 megawatts of power for the local community by exporting the heat … Read more
Not only is spam a nuisance and sometimes criminally deceptive, it's got a carbon footprint.
The mere act of people around the world deleting spam and searching for legitimate e-mail falsely labeled as junk creates the annual energy consumption equivalent in the U.S. of 2.4 million homes using electricity and the same greenhouse gas emissions as 3.1 million passenger cars using two billion gallons of gas.
The average greenhouse gas emission associated … Read more
Wireless-sensor start-up Arch Rock thinks it has found a killer application: measuring energy use in commercial buildings.
The company on Monday introduced Energy Optimizer, a product line that combines its Internet Protocol-based sensors with server software for collecting and analyzing energy data.
The sensors can be attached to different circuits in a data center, for example, to measure electricity consumption over time.
Because they have radios to transmit information, the installation doesn't require laying new wires into a building, Arch Rock CEO Roland Acra said. And because they are IP-based, they can be managed on an existing corporate network, … Read more