Methanol-powered fuel cells are being used to back up a
solar sensing system that gives wind farms data about wind. Wind farms need
information on wind patterns to run their operations. Second Wind markets a
solar-based remote Triton wind sensing system that gives wind farms advanced
data about the wind. To back up the solar system during cloudy periods, Second
Wind partnered with Sirius Integrator to create a backup system of fuel cells
powered by methanol. The backup system can run 60 days or longer with little or
no solar charging. When the sun comes back out, the methanol system shuts off.
The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
Neil Fromer is the executive director of the Resnick Institute, a program for energy and sustainability at the California Institute of Technology, working to develop new ideas and research technologies related to providing a sustainable future. He spoke to us about the severity of the current drought in California and how solar energy can help prevent such situations in the future.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.