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112 posts tagged with electricity.
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Refrigerator, clothes dryer, computer, power plant?

Why owning your own power plant might not be crazy (from rmi.org)
posted by flabdablet on May 23, 2014 - 37 comments

DIY Brain Stimulation

Inside the Strange New World of DIY Brain Stimulation. "Inspired by scientific studies, ordinary people are buying and building devices to send electrical current into their brains. Some say it has improved their memory and focus. Others have found relief from depression and chronic pain. But are they getting ahead of the science?" [Via]
posted by homunculus on May 7, 2014 - 42 comments

The Moral Question Of Our Time: Can We Share The Planet?

UN Climate Report: We Must Focus On 'Decarbonization', and It Won't Wreck the Economy - "The basic message is simple: We share a planet. Let's start acting like it." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Apr 23, 2014 - 50 comments

Scientific magic and the humble pickle

Bompas & Parr Present the World’s First Gherkin Chandelier.
posted by Bella Donna on Feb 9, 2014 - 20 comments

Mad Science Museum: you'll be living on a diet of exclamation points

Alex Boese is interested in hoaxes, as you can tell from his Museum of Hoaxes website (lots previously), but he also enjoys tracking down weird science stories like Evan O'Neill Kane's self-appendectomy and Allan Walker Blair's black widow bite experiment on himself, as collected at the Mad Science Museum online.
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 3, 2014 - 3 comments

Indirect fusion's nothing less than HiiiPoWeR

Installed solar capacity is growing by leaps and bounds, led by Walmart and Apple, and helped by bonds backed by solar power payments,[*] which have sent industry stocks soaring, even as molten salt and new battery technologies come on line to generate storage for use when the sun doesn't shine. Of course we could always go to geostationary orbit -- or the moon -- as well we may (if politics allow it) as thirst from the developing world grows beyond the earth's carrying capacity. [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Nov 30, 2013 - 41 comments

San Francisco's secret electric power grid

"While DC continues to race through San Francisco power lines at nearly the speed of light, it does so anonymously. You’ll find no reference to DC power distribution in PG&E’s annual reports or on its websites. Even some utility engineers are unaware of its existence, which raises a curious question: Why is the inheritor of this legacy, the mighty and sophisticated PG&E, still bothering with DC distribution 133 years later?" [more inside]
posted by gingerbeer on Nov 29, 2013 - 44 comments

Shocking exposé

Cloud services that power email and other technologies we use each day are themselves massive energy consumers. Gigaom reporters have written a pair of in-depth articles about efforts by Amazon and Apple to build infrastructure and source their own energy.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Nov 18, 2013 - 16 comments

Your resistance is most entertaining, meatbag.

How hard is it to die of an electric shock? [more inside]
posted by dubusadus on Aug 3, 2013 - 64 comments

Form and Landscape

Form and Landscape - Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Basin, 1940-1990 - is a series of themed exhibitions that tell the story of how Los Angeles 'became modern' by using photos from the comprehensive archives of Southern California Edison. The photos portray the many roles that electricity has played in the development and modernization of Californian life and culture (domestic life, signage, streetscapes, etc.). Part of the Getty's Pacific Standard Time Presents initiative.
posted by carter on Jun 18, 2013 - 7 comments

First, the tried to make moons

Early in the 19th century, gas lamps first illuminated city streets, not long after the potential for gas lighting was publicly demonstrated. Less than a century later, electricity was seen as the future of lighting public spaces, thanks in part to technology that was demonstrated around the time of gas lighting. Arc lamps, the predecessor to filament bulbs, were much too bright for lighting homes and businesses, but a single arc lamp could light a whole town. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 31, 2013 - 30 comments

High voltage wood erosion.

How beautiful it is when you allow high voltage electricity to burn it's way through wood? Very beautiful.
posted by OmieWise on Mar 4, 2013 - 23 comments

The Mechanical Transmission of Power

Engineering question: say you only had one generator with multiple places that needed power in real time. How to get power to them? Caveat: do it mechanically with no electricity. Low Tech Magazine brings you the Jerker Line System and the Stangenkunst, for all your post-apocalyptic / steam punk power distribution needs. Some are still in operation: Jerkerline Field wheel near Oil Springs Ontario (video), and Oklahoma (video).
posted by stbalbach on Feb 2, 2013 - 21 comments

That's the Way...

"Just Try and Make Your Own Gun (Rail or Coil Gun)" with Mehdi Sadaghdar
posted by the_artificer on Jan 18, 2013 - 22 comments

The sale of the century

How We Happened to Sell Off Our Electricity is James Meek's dissection of the systematic re-privatisation of the UK power industry.
Are you an enemy of liberal principles if you question the fact that, when local electrical engineers dig up the roads in London, they’re working for East Asia’s richest man, the Hong Kong-based Li Ka-shing? In north-east England, they work for Warren Buffett; in Birmingham, Cardiff and Plymouth, the Pennsylvania Power and Light Company; in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Liverpool, Iberdrola; in Manchester, a consortium of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and a J.P. Morgan investment fund.

posted by scruss on Jan 10, 2013 - 20 comments

Electrical fluctuations as a watermark for audio and video recordings

Audio recordings usually include a low-level background noise caused by electrical equipment. The hum contains small frequency fluctuations which are propagated consistently over entire power grids. By storing the pattern of grid-wide fluctuations in a database forensics experts are able to use the hum as a watermark. This can determine when the recording was made, where it was made and whether it was recorded in a single edit. [more inside]
posted by rongorongo on Dec 12, 2012 - 43 comments

ELECTRICITY FIGHT!

ELECTRICITY FIGHT! (slyt- some audience responses NSFW)
posted by Phyllis Harmonic on Nov 7, 2012 - 15 comments

Coronet Instructional Films

From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 1, 2012 - 41 comments

Incandescent lightbulbs banned

Incandescent lightbulbs are now banned across the entire European Union as of September 1. "Concerns about poor performance of replacement bulbs have been proved wrong." It is predicted to save 39 terawatt-hours of electricity across the EU annually by 2020. "The phase-out has been very smooth." BanTheBulb said "..the vast majority of the public have adjusted to using the next generation of lighting technologies with the absolute minimum of fuss and drama." [more inside]
posted by stbalbach on Aug 31, 2012 - 204 comments

US windpower milestone, 50GW powers 13M homes

While you'd never know from the US media, the US wind energy industry has breezed past a 50GW milestone. That's enough to power 13 million homes, according to the American Wind Energy Association. [more inside]
posted by Twang on Aug 18, 2012 - 136 comments

Off Grid Post Mortem

A Post-Mortem on India's Blackout: IEEE Spectrum's energy, power, and green tech blog gives an excellent overview of what led to the devastating blackouts that occurred in India on July 30th and 31st leaving more than 600 million people (approx 10% of the world's population) without electricity. Bonus: BBC's Soutik Biswas gives us 10 interesting factoids on India's power situation to chew on.
posted by infini on Aug 10, 2012 - 25 comments

Lightning capture at 7 thousand frames per second

These each take about 1/2 second but have been expanded to ~30 seconds. I read a book about Tesla awhile ago, and he seemed to view lighting almost like a fluid (and electricity in general). This is a really cool, really interesting way to view it, and the videos here are mesmerizing.
posted by davezor on Jul 15, 2012 - 23 comments

Electricity in Japan

In the year and a half since the earthquake and tsunami caused an industry-wide Japanese nuclear shutdown , Japanese consumers and businesses have been urged to conserve energy whenever possible. Although a few reactors are being brought back online temporarily, the Japanese government has pledged to move away from nuclear power sources. Yesterday the Japanese government announced what may be the world's highest solar photovolatic feed-in tariff at 53 cents per kWh generated. [more inside]
posted by thewalrus on Jun 20, 2012 - 47 comments

A (potentially) not so sunny day

Earth Faces 12% Chance of "Catastrophic Solar Megastorm" by 2020 The last gigantic solar storm, known as the Carrington Event, occurred more than 150 years ago and was the most powerful such event in recorded history. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad on Feb 29, 2012 - 75 comments

face to face

The UnFacebook World via
posted by infini on Nov 17, 2011 - 57 comments

Edison, Westinghouse, and the Race to Electrocution

When New York State sentenced convicted murderer William Kemmler to death, he was slated to become the first man to be executed in an electric chair. Killing criminals with electricity “is a good idea,” Edison said at the time. “It will be so quick that the criminal can’t suffer much.” He even introduced a new word to the American public, which was becoming more and more concerned by the dangers of electricity. The convicted criminals would be “Westinghoused.”
posted by monju_bosatsu on Oct 12, 2011 - 54 comments

the difference between power and electricity

The failure to fix electricity infrastructure in Afghanistan. IEEE Spectrum published a damning investigation into the ongoing incompetence, corruption, and waste of the USAID and its murky cost-plus contracts, some 'so vague that it did not require the contractor to provide "specific deliverables with concrete delivery dates."' [from here] Not surprisingly, they spend a lot of money. previously
posted by thandal on Oct 8, 2011 - 5 comments

The answer, my friend, is blowing in Wyoming

The best wind in America is in Wyoming. It is a door-snapping, heart-pounding wind that barrels in from the west, chasing the truckers along Interstate 80 as they race to make Omaha by nightfall. It is sometimes described with words ordinarily associated with dark chocolate or exceptional pinot noir. It has been called dense, world-class, consistently extraordinary, special, and fabulous.. Advocates of wind power though are faced with a conundrum. [more inside]
posted by storybored on Oct 3, 2011 - 29 comments

The bright future of solar powered factories

Most of the talk about renewable energy is aimed at electricity production. However, most of the energy we need is heat, which solar panels and wind turbines cannot produce efficiently. To power industrial processes like the making of chemicals, the smelting of metals or the production of microchips, we need a renewable source of thermal energy. Direct use of solar energy can be the solution, and it creates the possibility to produce renewable energy plants using only renewable energy plants, paving the way for a truly sustainable industrial civilization. [more inside]
posted by Bangaioh on Jul 30, 2011 - 31 comments

you may say I'm a dreamer

-Only an 'energy internet' can ward off disaster
-We must electrify the transport sector [more inside]
posted by kliuless on May 19, 2011 - 58 comments

What in the blue blazes is that?

A string of electrical transformers exploding in Fort Worth, TX. [more inside]
posted by loquacious on May 12, 2011 - 48 comments

renewable is doable if governments are think-it-throughable?

As you may know, Japan's prime minister Naoto Kan announced two days ago that plans for new nuclear power plants in Japan are to be scrapped (NYT). Meanwhile, a landmark study from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says renewable energy can power the world (Guardian - article includes many related links). Here's a summary of the IPCC Special Report.
posted by flapjax at midnite on May 12, 2011 - 118 comments

Artificial Leaf

"A practical [inexpensive] artificial leaf has been one of the Holy Grails of science for decades. We believe we [Sun Catalytix] have done it." Video: Professor Daniel Nocera at MIT
posted by stbalbach on Mar 29, 2011 - 74 comments

Andrew Crosse: poet, naturalist, and creator of insects born of electricty and minerals

Andrew Crosse (June 17, 1784 – July 6, 1855) was a British poet, naturalist, local magistrate, and "gentleman scientist" who may or may not have created life in an electrocrystallization experiment. [Post inspired by TheophileEscargot on MetaChat] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 10, 2011 - 5 comments

More recent events in solar power

Around one year ago we saw some of the recent events in solar power. At that time solar panels topped out at a peak efficiency of around 290W for a 1.99 x 0.99 meter 72-cell module, with a lone rare and expensive 315W module that was used to build team Germany's solar decathlon winning house. Since then prices have dropped a lot, and China is advancing in commodity tech. [more inside]
posted by thewalrus on Mar 3, 2011 - 80 comments

ending corporate welfare

Get the Energy Sector off the Dole - Why ending all government subsidies for fuel production will lead to a cleaner energy future—and why Obama has a rare chance to make it happen.
posted by kliuless on Jan 12, 2011 - 42 comments

iron tesla

Iron Man on electric guitar with tesla coils. [VIDEO]
posted by philip-random on Oct 4, 2010 - 46 comments

The History of Nikola Tesla

The History of Nikola Tesla - A Short Story. In celebration of the 154th anniversary of Nikola Tesla's birth. [Via]
posted by homunculus on Jul 10, 2010 - 26 comments

Rethinking hydro power for energy independence

Who knew that dams worsen global warming? Long ignored "run of river" or streaming hydro power now offers an alternative by avoiding a large reservoir. [more inside]
posted by Brian B. on Jul 4, 2010 - 17 comments

Electric Boogaloo

Shocking photos of the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 and more volcano pictures from Marco Fulle taken on April 14th, 16th, and 17th.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Apr 18, 2010 - 130 comments

From Oil Derricks To Wind Turbines

A 1999 Texas electricity deregulation statute included, almost as an afterthought, a requirement that the state develop 2,000 megawatts of wind power by 2009. This past February, wind generators delivered a record 6,242 megawatts of power to Texas population centers -- 22 percent of all the electricity consumed in the Texas grid. Could their model transform the nation's utility sector?, Or will it be derailed by special interests and politics? [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 9, 2010 - 68 comments

High voltage wires versus branch

High voltage wires versus branch. SLYT.
posted by odinsdream on Mar 1, 2010 - 65 comments

I'm shocked, shocked I say!

It feels best at 220 volts. But with the provided replacement plugs, the Vilcus can also be used at 110 volts. Makes a great gift for those special friends. (from the people who brought you the LCD keyboard)
posted by klausness on Feb 17, 2010 - 54 comments

Apples and Oranges

How many oranges does it take to charge an Apple? (A SLYT post, via)
posted by zarq on Feb 13, 2010 - 46 comments

Does what it says on the tin.

Tesla Christmas Tree.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy on Dec 24, 2009 - 12 comments

2009 Solar Decathalon

For the second time in two years a team from Germany has won the US Department of Energy's Solar Decathalon. This year's entry was a cube shaped house entirely covered in 300W and 70W solar panels generating a peak of 11.1kW. The DoE has published a complete product directory of all the subsystems and components used to build each house. Another notable design is the Canadian Team North house designed for optimal solar+insulation performance in high latitude climates.
posted by thewalrus on Oct 17, 2009 - 15 comments

They called him mad! Mad! Zzzzt!

Wireless electricity has been mentioned previously. A recent TED Talk actually shows it in action. The presenter, Eric Giler of WiTricity Corp (a startup founded by MIT researcher Marin Soljačić), mentions the first attempt at wireless electricity, the Wardenclyffe Tower, designed and built over a hundred years ago by Nikola Tesla. [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious on Aug 30, 2009 - 95 comments

Power to the people

Kropla's World Electric Guide - outlets / power plugs of the world (map), along with an index of international voltages and frequencies for travellers. Plugs in the future: modular, stylish, smart, eco-friendly, rotating, collapsible, or gone entirely.
posted by Paragon on Jul 28, 2009 - 12 comments

Space based Solar Power

Space-based Solar Power beamed down to earth sounds pretty far out, but the technology is further along than many suppose, the sun never sets in space, and space is a Saudi Arabia of unlimited energy for the nation with the technology to harness it. PG&E (California) in conjunction with SolarEn has announced a 200MW space solar project to be up by 2016.
posted by stbalbach on Apr 20, 2009 - 87 comments

Hydrogen. It's the fuel of the future, and it always will be.

Pics of the new Tesla S-Model have been leaked. With an anticipated price tag of 50K and a potential 45-minute recharge time, will this finally kick-start a true replacement to the internal combustion engine? And if so, where will the electricity come from? What future is there for the fuel-cell vehicle, or will fuel cells remain stationary? Is that really it for hydrogen? [more inside]
posted by molecicco on Mar 28, 2009 - 68 comments

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