Monday, August 24, 2015

Guest Post: Green Heating and Cooling Technologies

[Clean Air Watch from time to time accepts guest posts that we think are of general interest. Today's post on Green Heating and Cooling Technologies is from Sarah Smith.  We were particularly intrigued because we had to look up one of them! Hope you find this interesting.]


Wind Power

A wind-powered water heater does not function like a traditional water heater because it doesn’t use heating elements. 

On a windy day, wind enters the device and activates the turbine. Then, many magnets rotate on a metal plate. While the magnets spin, the temperature of the plate rises. At this point, water heats up as it travels through copper coils.


Green Coal Fuel for Heating

Coal has a lot of carbon, so it produces nitrogen oxide, sulfur, and carbon dioxide after it is burned. However, scientists have developed a new method called gasification. During this process, the carbon properties in coal are pulled from water and oxygen. As a result, the new coal produces clean hydrogen gas, which can be used for fuel. 

Ice-Powered HVAC Units

During the night, an ice-powered air conditioner generates ice to cool the environment. Each day, the unit freezes nearly 450 gallons of water by moving refrigerant through copper coils. Once enough ice is made, the cubes remain in a storage area until the air conditioner stands down.

Biodiesel 

In the past, a bunded diesel tank was only used to power tractors and trucks. Now, many people are using poly diesel fuel tanks to heat their homes.

Biodiesel is an environmentally friendly fuel source because it produces less pollution. Also, since the fuel is made from soybeans, corn, sugarcane, and wheat, it is a very sustainable product. 

Although Biodiesel helps the environment, it is not available in most cities. Currently, only 19 companies in the United States manufacture Biofuel blends for residential locations.

Adsorption

Electricity does not drive cooling and heating systems that have absorption properties. All adsorption HVAC units use solar energy, natural gas, and geothermal power. 

An absorption heat pump and a traditional heat pump have the same functions. However, a refrigerant is not used in an absorption heating device. The system uses a water-ammonia mixture instead.

Hydronic Heating

A hydronic system gathers geothermal and solar energy to heat liquid. While in use, the water travels through tubing to a heat exchanger. Most systems transfer heat using radiation, convection, or conduction.

Biomass

Biomass is a renewable energy source that is very affordable. Biomass heating devices hold energy and turn it into heat. When the system operates, it does not emit carbon dioxide.

Solar

Solar panels have cells that are made out of photovoltaic materials. However, many solar systems are not efficient because they only convert 10 percent of solar energy into electricity.

Passive Solar System

A direct gain system pulls solar energy from a building’s windows, floors, and walls. To use this technology, the home will need extra components, such as radiant flooring.

Geothermal System 

A geothermal system has a heat pump that pulls energy through geothermal wells underground. The unit uses clean energy to cool and heat environments during the winter and summer.


There are other thermal heating and cooling options that help the environment too, such as a thermal oil heating system. 


Sarah is a small business owner, and is currently learning about green technologies, using the internet. Aside from working on her own business, she likes to use social media, and read travel books.

2 comments:

Frank O'Donnell, Clean Air Watch said...

[Here is a comment from Kaleb Little of the National Biodiesel Board. We thank him for his feedback]:


Just for some additional information for readers, as the author described, biodiesel is a growing option for heating homes and businesses, but a few of the authors comments were just a little bit off.

The US commercial biodiesel industry has been around since the late 1990’s. Regardless of the types of tanks, biodiesel has been used in all kinds of applications on-road and off-road; including city and public fleets, buses, over the road trucking, mining, construction, agriculture, and to heat homes.

Biodiesel is absolutely an environmentally friendly fuel source, however it is made only from fats and oils and not the entire crop. So soybean oil, animal fats, recycled cooking oil from restaurants, and a host of other oilseed crops. It’s important to note that using only the oil portion leaves the highly valuable protein portion of oilseed crops to go into the food supply. (http://www.biodieselsustainability.com/2015/02/24/biodiesel-does-not-compete-with-food/)

Biodiesel is available throughout the heating oil market. There are more than 125 commercial biodiesel producers across the country manufacturing the fuel, with more than 25 independent heating oil dealers who are registered to sell biodiesel blended heating oil, known in the industry as Bioheat®. Biodiesel is the first Advanced Biofuel to be commercially produced across the country, with a nearly 1.8 billion gallon market in 2014. For more information visit http://bioheatonline.com/about-bioheat/#.VedjB02FOUk or www.biodiesel.org.

Kaleb Little
National Biodiesel Board

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