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The Best 12V Solar Battery Chargers

by Justin Thomas •

Sunforce Solar 12V Charger

Solar cells really shine at charging your batteries at remote location or on a boat. They are also useful for maintaining a charge on a 12V battery, such as a car battery. The best (and most expensive) solar battery chargers are flexible, thin-film solar cells. These cells can be folded and packed away easily. Sunforce Solar Battery Chargers You can …

22

90% Of Israeli Homes Have Solar Water Heaters

by Justin Thomas •

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I recently noted that Hawaii has enacted a law that requires all new homes to install solar water heaters. Eventually, Hawaii may have as many water heaters as Israel, where 90% of homes have solar water heaters installed. When viewed from above, the Jerusalem often glitters with the shine of the thousands of solar heaters that adorn rooftops.

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New Record: World’s Largest Wind Turbine (7+ Megawatts)

by Justin Thomas •

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The world’s largest wind turbine is now the Enercon E-126. This turbine has a rotor diameter of 126 meters (413 feet). The E-126 is a more sophisticated version of the E-112, formerly the world’s largest wind turbine and rated at 6 megawatts. This new turbine is officially rated at 6 megawatts too, but will most likely produce 7+ megawatts (or …

6

Greece Plans To Construct World’s Largest Solar Farm (200 Megawatts)

by Justin Phelps •

The wave of interest in solar power across Europe has now touched Greece, and in a big way. The Mediterranean country of over ten million inhabitants plans to construct Earth’s biggest solar farm. Estimated to cost €600 million ($822 million), the project will cover 1,285 acres of depleted coal mines in the northern city of Kozani.

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Solar Powered Air Conditioner Released

by Justin Thomas •

A company called GreenCore Air has released an air conditioner than can be powered by a single 170 watt solar panel. The GreenCore air conditioning unit can heat and cool a 600 square foot room. It runs on DC power, so there is no need to put an AC inverter between the solar panel and the air conditioner. This eliminates …

2

China’s Solar-Powered City: Rizhao

by Justin Thomas •

Rizhao City, which means City of Sunshine in Chinese, has a unique dedication to the sun. In Rizhao, 99% of households in the central districts use solar water heaters, and most traffic signals, street and park lights are powered by photovoltaic solar cells. In the suburbs and villages, more than 30% of households use solar water heaters, and over 6,000 …

6

Best Solar LED Lawn And Garden Lights

by Benjamin Roman •

Since LEDs are an efficient light source and draw far less power than traditional bulbs, they are perfect for off-the-grid applications where solar cells charge a battery that powers the lamp. Large-scale applications of this concept include LED road lane markers, but smaller-scale projects like lighting your lawn or garden are perfect uses for them as well. Keep in mind …

3

Solar Water Heating: Book Review

by Justin Thomas •

Solar Water Heating is the first book I’ve seen that focuses solely on solar water heating. It’s a technique that’s been practiced since ancient times, but until now there’s been strangely few resources on the topic for a North American audience. The author, Bob Ramlow, examines state-of-the-art solar heating systems. He covers not only solar water heaters, but also solar …

25

North America’s Largest Solar-Electric Plant Switched On

by Justin Thomas •

North America’s largest solar photovoltaic system is now running and generating power — about 30 million kilowatt-hours of electricity annually. The 14 megawatt power plant is at the Nellis Air Force Base in the sunny desert of southern Nevada. It’s expected to save about $1 million in power costs annually, and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 24,000 tons each year.