Exhibition Features LED

Fluorescent Lamps

A number of exhibitors showed off LED tube lamps that can be installed in existing fluorescent lamp sockets at the LED/OLED Lighting Technology Expo, which took place in Tokyo from April 15 to 17, 2009.

KFE Japan Co Ltd, for example, showcased Taiwan-made LED fluorescent lamps, which it started renting in March 2009. The company is currently renting 40 and 120cm long models for a minimum monthly fee of ¥135 (approx US$1.37) per lamp. And it will enhance the lineup and offer 30, 60 and 240cm long models from this fall.

Although LED fluorescent lamps are already available in the market, there was an increase in the number of such products that can be used with existing fluorescent lamp sockets. Many of the previous products need electric works to remove the existing sockets and reconnect wires for installation. However, if the existing sockets do not need to be removed, it is very easy to install LED fluorescent lamps.

For example, TriGem Japan Corp’s LED fluorescent lamps are compatible with about 200 kinds of sockets being used in Japan and Korea and can be installed without electrical work if the fluorescent lamp sockets are glow or rapid start type. They also support some inverter type sockets, the company said.

The products of Korea-based Teklux Co Ltd, which will be released by Japanese limited liability partnership Eco-Consortium LLP, can be used with the existing sockets except those for HF type fluorescent lamps.

The power consumption of the “TL120,” which corresponds to a 40W 120cm-long lamp, and the “TL60,” which is a substitute for a 20W 60cm-long lamp, are 23W and 13W, respectively. They will be priced at ¥18,000 and 10,000, respectively. Full-fledged sales of the products will now begin in Japan.

Koha Co Ltd will also launch a 20W-equivalent glow start type product and a 40W-equivalent rapid start type product for ¥17,000 and 10,000, respectively. Also, Toshin Electric Co Ltd released a 40W product that supports both glow and rapid start sockets (inverter type sockets are not supported).

However, some people are raising concerns about those products.

“Their power-saving effect is lessened as a result of the power consumed by the sockets, and their safety has not been verified yet,” according to an LED lamp manufacturer. Some manufacturers are recommending that customers remove the existing sockets for such reasons.

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 1st July 2009


China to Push Green Cars

India to Focus on Electric Vehicles

A number of lectures on the policies and current states of electric vehicle (EV) development in China and India were delivered at the 24th International Battery, Hybrid and Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle Symposium & Exhibition (EVS24), which took place in Norway from May 13 to 16, 2009.

China is planning to allot half the total transportation energy consumption to EVs and fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) that primarily use energy other than petroleum by 2020. In India, on the other hand, the diffusion of EVs has become an important issue due to its environmental problems and transportation conditions.

Gasoline cars, EVs to co-exist for some time in China

Automotive sales are growing extremely fast in China. They reached about 9.3 million units in 2008 and are likely to surpass 10 million units, the largest sales volume in the world, in 2010. The number of vehicles owned in China is currently 40 million and is forecast to reach 150 million in 2020.

C. C. Chan, president of the Electric Vehicle Association of Asia Pacific China, and Duan Ruichun, executive president of Chinese Electro-technical Society China, reported data on automotive development including EVs in China.

China is planning to reduce gasoline cars and hybrids, which are powered primarily by oil, and allot half the total energy consumption in the transportation segment to EVs and FCVs, which are powered by energies other than oil, Chan said.

As half of the existing cars will remain, China will (1) maintain the infrastructure for gasoline and other liquid fuels, (2) make its mileage regulation for gasoline cars etc, meet international standards and (3) give priority to high-efficiency direct-injection engine cars and hybrids until 2020.

Ruichun said China is conducting 863 projects concerning EV and FCV development to meet this goal. As a result of those projects, EVs and hybrids are currently running in 13 cities in China. And the Chinese government is planning to increase the number of those vehicles to more than 1,000 units within three years.

At first, EVs and FCVs will be diffused as means of public transportation. To accomplish this goal, the government will increase the subsidies for purchasers of electric buses, etc. For example, for the purchase of a hybrid, electric or fuel-cell bus with a total length of 10m or more, a subsidy of up to Rmb420,000 (about ¥5.88 million or US$61,600), 500,000 (¥7 million) or 600,000 (¥8.4 million) will be paid, respectively.

As for the purchase of a general EV, a subsidy of up to Rmb50,000 (¥700,000), 60,000 (840,000) and 250,000 (3.5 million) will be granted to the purchaser of a hybrid, EV and FCV, respectively.

Aided by those stimulative policies, China is already at a state where it can start producing core technologies for EVs and automotive platforms, Ruichun said.

“We have already achieved 2,000W/kg output density of a Li-ion secondary battery with a current capacity of 6 to 100Ah and mounted a 1,300W/kg output motor with more than 93% efficiency on a car,” he said, emphasizing the fact that EV development is making smooth progress in China.

EVs are suited for India

Meanwhile, Indian population will outnumber the world’s largest Chinese population, exceeding 1.4 billion in about 2030. The Indian automotive market has been growing at an annual rate of more than 15% as well. The market will maintain the same scale as in the preceding year even during the global recession of 2008 to 2009.

The diffusion of EVs seems to have become a pressing challenge in India.

“Considering environmental issues, we will face a serious trouble if we do not start spreading more EVs in priority to gasoline cars,” said Chetan Maini, deputy chairman and CTO of Reva Electric Company of India.

“In large cities, the degree of atmospheric pollution due to auto emission is by far worse than our safety standards,” said Shanta Chatterji, chairman and managing director of Chattelec Vehicles India Ltd of India. “And the number of deaths caused by diseases from air pollution has already outpaced that of deaths in traffic accidents.”

EVs are suited not only for environmental reasons but also for transportation conditions in India. Behind this is the fact that “long-distance driving is difficult in India because of heavy traffic congestion in urban areas,” Maini said. He revealed that 95% or more of automobiles in India are estimated to travel 80km or less per trip, with 80% traveling 25km or less.

“An EV equipped with a Li-ion secondary battery can travel about 120km per charge,” Maini said. “In other words, more than 95% of cars in India can be covered. Even when traveling 240km, the EV can travel the distance with a quick charge for about 1.5 hours. So, there will be no problem if more than 99% of cars in India are EVs.”

Moreover, there is little chance that traffic congestions will improve in India, where urban population is expected to increase about 50% in 20 years.

Nevertheless, the current hottest car in India is the low-priced gasoline car, “Nano,” which Tata Motors Ltd of India is planning to release. Reportedly, nearly 200,000 units of the Nano have already been ordered.

“The diffusion of the Nano is likely to worsen the current transportation conditions and environmental issues,” Maini said, commenting on the Nano.

The Nano can be used as the second car in urban areas or a convenient car for people in rural areas. In India, the number of cars purchased as the second car has reportedly surpassed that of first car purchases since 2005.

EVs recently started to penetrate India. The total sales of electric motorcycles and EVs were about 10,000 units in 2007 to 2008, but the sales are expected to sharply soar to about 110,000 units in 2008 to 2009. However, electric motorcycles are making up the majority of the sales.

Although there are more than 15 manufacturers of electric motorcycles in India, only few Indian manufacturers deal with EVs or hybrids. At this moment, Reva is the only EV manufacturer and Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd is the only hybrid manufacturer in India. Tata, on the other hand, is planning to market EVs in Europe as a starter.

The Indian government is currently devising policies with three pillars, “ecology,” “economy” and “social equity,” to diffuse EVs. Of these three pillars, EVs hold the key to both ecology and economy, Chatterji said.

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 1st July 2009


Mitsubishi Heavy to Test CO2

Recovery from Coal-fired Flue Gas

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd (MHI) and Southern Company, a major US power company, will jointly launch a field test in 2011 to recover high-purity carbon dioxide (CO2) from coal-fired flue gas.

The two companies will set up a CO2 recovery demonstration plant, which is designed to be built at a medium-scale thermal power station in Alabama, the US. Based on the results of this demonstration plant, they will aim to commercialize the recovery plant in the future.

The field test will be subsidized by the US government. The demonstration plant will be constructed in Plant Barry, a coal-fired power station owned by Southern’s subsidiary Alabama Power. Recovered CO2 will be compressed and stored in an aquifer deep underground.

The demonstration plant is composed of various facilities such as those for pre-processing, CO2 absorption/reclamation (absorption and reclamation towers) and CO2 injection. The plant will recover 500t of CO2 per day (equivalent to that produced when 25,000kW electricity is generated). The recovery rate is 90% or higher. The purity of recovered CO2 is expected to be 99.9%.

The recovery process is as follows. Coal-fired flue gas contains not only CO2 but also ‘impurities’ such as SOx, NOx, heavy metals and halogen compounds. These impurities are removed as much as possible in the pre-processing facilities, and the flue gas is cooled to near room temperature.

Flue gas with most impurities removed is taken into the absorption tower. Inside the tower, the gas is brought into contact with an absorbing solution so that only CO2 is absorbed into the solution. The solvent, “KS-1,” is an amine-based material co-developed by MHI and Kansai Electric Power Co Inc.

Next, the solution containing CO2 is sent to the reclamation tower, where CO2 and the solution are separated from each other by heating. Then, CO2 is recovered, and the solution is recycled.

MHI has already commercialized a system to recover CO2 from natural gas-fired flue gas. But, in order to apply this system to coal-fired flue gas, an additional process is required to remove heavy metals and halogen compounds because the impurities contained in natural gas-fired flue gas are only SOx and NOx.

Electric Power Development Co Ltd is also testing a CO2 recovery plant for coal-fired flue gas at its Matsushima Thermal Power Plant. However, the amount of CO2 recovered at the plant is only 10t per day. Therefore, a field test needs to be carried out using a larger scale plant for commercialization.

In addition to the field test announced this time, MHI is planning to construct a demonstration plant with a recovery capacity of 3,000t per day in the UK and intends to start trial operations in 2015.

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 1st July 2009


NGK Develops High-efficiency

Hydrogen Fuel Cell

Jun 15, 2009 17:53
Hiroshi Idegawa, Nikkei Monozukuri

NGK Insulators Ltd developed a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) that uses hydrogen gas as fuel and achieved a lower heating value (LHV) of 63%, one of the highest in the world.

The SOFC features a power output of 700W and an operating temperature of 800°C.

The company lowered the resistance value by completely coating the cell’s supporting anode with a thin film (5?m thick) of electrolyte (zirconia) and secured a sufficient power generation area by forming cathodes on both sides of the cell to achieve the large output, it said.

To evenly spread fuel gas to the entire cell, flow channels for fuel gas were formed inside the prototype cell. The thickness of the cell is 1.5mm. Also, the new fuel cell is superior in terms of size and cost because it can generate power on both the top and bottom sides and its flow channels eliminate the need for components (separators) to separate fuel gas from air, NGK Insulators said.

The company provided a stack in which tens of the cells are layered to a leading oil company in Japan, asking it to evaluate the fuel cell’s power generation performance. And it will aim to commercialize the cell for use in homes and commercial facilities such as convenience stores and shopping malls by further improving its performance. The company is planning to advance the development through technical alliances and joint developments with other companies.

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 1st July 2009


Claim to save hugely in heating bills




When the combustion process is improved more value is then gained from the wood used. Excessive smoke is unburnt fuel. SmartBurn enables this fuel (smoke) to be burnt in the fire instead of being released into the atmosphere.    SmartBurn reduces Carbon emissions (as soot and sap).

Chimney Before SmartBurn Chimney After SmartBurn Before  SmartBurn After SmartBurn

Each SmartBurn prevents approximately 15 kg of smoke haze and      particulate emissions from entering the atmosphere.

SmartBurn contains a mixture of non-toxic natural ingredients and for best results SmartBurn should be replaced every 3 months.

SmartBurn is also effective in lounge open fireplaces and kitchen stoves.

SmartBurn is proudly Australian Invented, Manufactured and Owned.

This exciting technology has been Internationally Patented and the name SmartBurn has been Trademarked.

FIND OUT MORE HERE > http://www.smartburn.com.au/

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 29th May 2009


EPA bans carbofuran in food crops


WASHINGTON (UPI) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has revoked all regulations permitting small amounts of the residue of carbofuran in food.

The EPA’s Monday decision was hailed by the American Bird Conservancy as marking “a huge victory for wildlife and the environment.”

The action involves a pesticide sold under the name “Furadan” by the FMC Corp. The EPA said the toxic insecticide does not meet current U.S. food safety standards. The EPA said its ruling will eliminate residues of carbofuran in food, including imports. Ultimately, the federal agency said, it will remove the pesticide from the market.

The conservancy said the agency’s announcement confirms a proposed action first announced in July. FMC Corp. will have 90 days to challenge the decision. Once the rule becomes final, the EPA will proceed with the cancellation of registration for all uses of the pesticide.
“Carbofuran causes neurological damage in humans, and one of the most deadly pesticides to birds left on the market,” said George Fenwick, president of the conservancy. “It is responsible for the deaths of millions of wild birds since its introduction in 1967, including Bald and Golden Eagles, Red-tailed Hawks and migratory songbirds. This EPA decision marks a huge victory for wildlife and the environment.”
The EPA said it was encouraging growers to “switch to safer pesticides or other environmentally preferable pest control strategies.”

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 18thn May 2009


Scientists find source of carbon lava


ALBUQUERQUE (UPI) — U.S. and French scientists say they have discovered the origin of carbon-based lavas erupting from a Tanzanian volcano.

The researchers, led by the University of New Mexico, analyzed gas samples collected from inside the active crater of Tanzania’s Oldoinyo Lengai volcano — the only volcano that is actively producing carbon-based lavas. The geochemical analyses revealed a very small degree of partial melting of minerals in the Earth’s upper mantle is the source of the rare carbon-derived lava.

Although carbon-based lavas, known as carbonatites, are common, the Oldoinyo Lengai volcano, located in the East African Rift in northern Tanzania, is the only place on Earth where they are actively erupting. The researchers said the lava expelled from the volcano is highly unusual in that it contains nearly no silica and greater than 50 percent carbonate minerals. Typically lavas contain high levels of silica, which increases their melting point to above 1,652 degrees Fahrenheit. The lavas of the Oldoinyo Lengai volcano erupt as a liquid at approximately 1,004 degrees Fahrenheit.

The research by the scientists from the University of New Mexico, the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California-San Diego and the Research Center for Petrographics and Geochemicals in Nancy, France, appears in the journal Nature.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 18th May 2009


Coconut tree timber a winner


Did you know that the wood from the coconut tree can be used as high-value flooring, bench tops, kitchen cabinets and furniture? The end product produced from coconut tree timbers has a very unique look and it’s about to make a big impact on the modern home scene. More information on cocowood.


Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 9th May 2009

Protecting wood without solvent emissions
A new process to treat timber so that it lasts longer has
been developed. Unlike the current Light Organic Solvent
Preservative (LOSP) process, the new process doesn’t release
organic solvents into the atmosphere. This new process is an
alternative to the current LOSP process widely used in Australia
to reduce rot and breakdown in timber.
Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 9th May 2009

New life for African mahogany
African mahogany is a high-value hardwood timber species
with great potential for forest plantations in northern Australia.
A genetic program is underway to provide quality control in the
growth of this species. This will result in fast growing trees with
good form for logging and ultimately high value use.

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 9th May 2009

Tsunami may have hit NYC area 300 B.C.


NEW YORK (UPI) — Scientists are postulating a huge wave — a tsunami — slammed into the region that is now New York City about 2,300 years ago.

The researchers say they’ve found evidence of a powerful ocean wave dumping sediment and shells across Long Island and New Jersey, and depositing wood debris far up the Hudson River, the BBC reported Monday. Further testing will be done to rule out other possible causes for the upheaval, such as an unusually large storm, the British network said.

Steven Goodbred of Vanderbilt University said sediment core drillings turned up large gravel, marine fossils and other materials dating to about 300 B.C. The evidence seems to rule out a storm, pointing instead to massive wave action, he said.

“If we’re wrong, it was one heck of a storm,” Goodbred said.


What would have caused the rare Atlantic Ocean tsunami is up for conjecture. The most plausible idea so far is an undersea landslide, the BBC reported, but one research group suggests an asteroid may have been to blame.
Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Sourced and published by Henry Sapiecha 9th May 2009