Sunday, June 20, 2010

Solar City Tower Waterfall for Rio Olympics 2016


Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, was selected for the 2016 Olympic Games and it is planning on building a massive solar powered artificial waterfall called "Solar City Tower", designed by Swiss (Zürich-based) company - RAFAA Architecture & Design.

The 344.5-foot tall (105 meters) Solar City Tower is going to be located on the small Cotonduba Island in Guanabara Bay. The enormous waterfall is almost twice the height of Niagara Falls and will be large enough to accommodate the opening and closing Olympic ceremonies. It is one of the first buildings that are being designed for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

This solar energy generating tower will be using many solar panels to produse electricity for the Olympic village by day. Any excess energy would be used to pump seawater into reservoirs at the top, so that it can be released by night as a spectacular waterfall. The falling water would also help turbines create electricity for the nighttime village.

In addition to producing energy, the Solar City Tower would have an elevator to take visitors to the very top of the tower, where a “glass sky walk” offers panoramic views of the surrounding harbor and Rio. There's even a platform at 297 feet (90.5) that provides bungee jumping. The giant tower would also house an auditorium, cafeteria, shop and amphitheater on the ground level.

The Solar City Tower is RAFAA’s entry in the International Architecture Competition for the 2016 Olympics, where the Brazilian metropolis aims to represent the green city of the future and hope to achieve its goal to host the first-ever zero-carbon Olympics.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Solé Power Tile – Integrated Solar Panel Roofing


Philadelphia-based company SRS Energy is a leading developer of sustainable solar roofing systems. The Solé Power Tile created by SRS Energy is the first curved building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) roofing product, designed in collaboration with US Tile. The eco-friendly blue barrel-style tiles can be seamlessly integrated with US Tile’s traditional clay tiles. 

The product employs thin-film solar technology that incorporates triple-junction amorphous solar cells made by UNI-SOLAR. The tiles are rated at 860 kilowatt hours per square (or per 100 square feet) annually in an area with "5.8 peak sun hours" per day. The Solé tiles are also lightweight, unbreakable and fully-recyclable. Their shape allows air to flow underneath, reducing a building’s cooling needs.

The Solé Power Tile has just passed a key milestone. SRS Energy has obtained an ETL listing report certifying the Solé Power Tile has passed the testing associated with the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) UL 1703 standard. Passing this is the prerequisite for any solar photovoltaics to be approved by the State of California as eligible for CSI rebates from utilities. In June, the factory will be inspected, and then the Solé Power Tile will likely be included on the CEC approved module listing on July 1st.

SRS Energy’s Solé Power Tile system won the Gold prize in the Industrial Design category of the 2010 Edison Best New Product Awards.

More information you can find here.