New, Cool and Downright Weird Green Tech

nest thermostatThe seemingly endless technological innovation in today’s society is constantly making our gadgets and software faster, smaller, more powerful and more functional. However, the pursuit of green tech innovations is one of the noblest, as some of our brightest minds tackle issues of renewable energy, recyclable materials, sustainable production and waste reduction.

As 2013’s Earth Week draws to a close, let’s take a look at some of the newest, coolest and even a few of the weirdest example of green tech available today.

Thermostats That Are Smarter Than We Are
The Nest is a popular new “smart” thermostat that learns from your local weather conditions, temperature preferences and even your personal schedule to automatically adjust the temperature within your home to maximize energy efficiency. By automating the temperature management process and sensing whether your home is occupied, the Nest can save you up to 20% in heating and cooling costs by reducing your wasted energy.

Solar and Wind Combined
Whenever solar power is mentioned, the same question arises: what do you do when the sun’s not shining? Simple — combine solar with wind energy! The Ecopole™, an innovative street lamp design from SavWatt, features both solar panels and a compact wind turbine to create a self-contained and eco-friendly outdoor lighting solution.

Some Zen for Your Desk
Looking to bring a little eco-friendliness to your office? iZen™ has created a Bluetooth-capable keyboard hand-crafted almost entirely out of bamboo. The keyboard is completely renewable and recyclable, and quite handsome to boot. The iZen Bamboo is the perfect wireless addition for your computer or Smart TV.

Eco-Friendly Construction
Project Frog, a six-year old startup based out of San Francisco, is pioneering the field of commercial prefabricated buildings. You know when you buy a DVD holder or bookcase with “some assembly required,” complete with the requisite bags of parts and labeled wooden panels? Imagine that but on a much, much larger scale.

Project Frog’s prefabricated constructions can create buildings much faster, as much as 50% cheaper and with considerably less construction site waste than traditional methods. And they’ve got a big focus on sustainability — their buildings are specifically designed to reduce electricity and heating and air costs.

soccket

The Soccket turns kinectic energy into usable electricity.

The Power of Play
The bright minds over at Uncharted Play have developed an incredibly clever invention designed to harness one of the world’s greatest passions and transform it into a functional energy source. The Soccket is a portable generator in the form of a soccer ball; inside the ball is a pendulum attached to a generator that collects the kinetic energy generated from play. 30 minutes of play can power an LED lamp for up to 3 hours!

The Downright Weird
The pursuit of greener, sustainable products is a passionate pursuit for a lot of inventors out there, however sometimes that passionate can manifest itself in strange ways. For example, designer Mike Thompson created a one-time use lamp that’s powered by combining a special powder with the user’s own blood.

And if you’re looking to reduce your carbon footprint even after you’re no longer leaving real footprints, there are several companies available that will provide an eco-friendly coffin, designed out of recyclable and natural materials that will biodegrade right along with you.

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About Joshua Erwin

Joshua Erwin
Josh is a content creator and strategist with a passion for all things tech, such as the latest gadgets, apps, games and more. Josh loves listening to and playing music and is a big college football fan, especially for his alma mater Georgia Bulldogs. When not writing for PGi, you’ll find him gaming or drumming on Sundays for the Atlanta Falcons.

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