Green technologies to follow in 2023

A lot of resources and skills have been invested in developing more sustainable technologies. There are many initiatives, particularly in the field of energy, and we decided to make an inventory of innovations to follow this year.

Let’s start with the first source of green energy: the Sun. Solar has long been considered a competitive primary renewable energy compared to traditional energy sources. But it has limitations, the first being that the Sun does not shine permanently. And even if they did, most commercial solar panels are not as efficient as wind turbines.

However, things are changing and some changes are promising. This is the case of these transparent solar panels that can be stuck like a film on windows or other surfaces. Two companies are advancing this type of technology: Ubiquitous Energy and Solar Windows.

Both aim to create partnerships with other companies rather than selling directly to consumers. So, these transparent solar panels are likely to be offered as an option for those who want to install new windows in their homes or offices.

Ubiquitous Energy’s transparent solar panels inside the windows. Ubiquitous Energy

Some electric cars are also starting to include solar panels. At the moment, all the solar cars (Aptera, Sono Sion and Lightyear 0) that exist still need to be plugged in to recharge on long journeys, but they promise up to 70 km per day from solar power alone, depending on the model . , the level of sunlight and the type of photovoltaic cells in which they are equipped.

The Aptera solar car is sold in the United States. Jesse Orrall/CNET

The promise of nuclear fusion

In solar anyway, scientists are trying to reproduce the Sun’s energy on Earth. Recently, the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory succeeded for the first time in exceeding the ignition threshold. This means that the nuclear fusion reactor produces more energy than it consumes. But we are still far from an operational technology because this type of reactor would need to generate ten times the input energy to be viable, which probably won’t happen for many years. But with the big fusion projects going on, like ITER, there’s a lot to follow in this area.

Animation showing nuclear fusion ignition at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

The strength of the wave

Other energy technology companies want to use a land-based energy source: the power of sea water. Wave Swell Energy’s manufactured vent recently underwent a one-year trial off the coast of King Island, Australia. The Uniwave200 directs waves into its central chamber, where air is compressed to spin a turbine and send power to the grid. Wave Swell Energy continues to improve its device to make it more reliable and affordable.

Uniwave200 captures wave energy at King Island, Australia. Wave Energy

Eco Wave Power uses submerged structures to generate wave energy. The floats rest on the surface, where the waves activate them, creating hydraulic pressure in the circuit that rotates the hydromotor that activates the generator that sends electricity to the network through the inverter.

The system is designed to automatically detect approaching storms in order to raise the floats until the bad weather has passed, thus preventing damage. Eco Wave Power has already installed systems in Gibraltar and Jaffa Port in Tel Aviv, Israel. He is working on another facility, in Los Angeles, that should be operational this year.

Eco Wave Power floats convert wave motion into electrical energy. Eco Wave Power

AWS Energy deployed a massive underwater buoy called the Archimedes Waveswing below the surface, tethered to the ocean floor. As it rises and falls with the waves, the generator converts this motion into electricity.

The Archimedes Waveswing underwater buoy. AWS Energy article adapted by CNETFrance

Photo: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

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