New ‘Artificial Leaf’ is a Real Gamechanger

Green solar technology that’s shaped to imitate nature has been a somewhat common thing over the last few years. However, instead of constructing a set of buildings meant to blend in and look like trees, as people did at the start of the nature building trend. Now scientists are beginning to look at natural, highly beneficial processes – in this case photosynthesis – and attempting to replicate nature’s solar successes.

Substantial progress has been made in this area. Recently researchers at MIT announced that due to a major breakthrough this year they have finally made the solar ‘artificial leaf’ a reality. The leaf is able to split apart the oxygen and hydrogen that make up water. It does this by opposing catalytic bonds on different sides of the leaf to draw the elements apart. It all sounds very complicated; mostly because it is, but it is an astonishing breakthrough whether its one we can fully understand the science behind or not. Once the two elements have been separated they can then be used as a source of energy.

The successful creation of the artificial leaf has reignited people’s imaginations. What we can do using technology grows with each new day. A worldwide group of scientists have looked at the groundbreaking artificial leaf and speculated that the technology can be used to create even more effective photosynthesis like reactions generating even more solar power. A leaf in nature can separate and efficiently process a large amount of different types of energy. The artificial leaf is the first major step to taking advantage of all the different types of energy the sun has to offer and replicating the already safe and clean solar reactions in nature.

This ‘artificial leaf’ development lead one professor, James Barber, who is unconnected with the project to comment, “there is no doubt that their achievement is a major breakthrough which will have a significant impact on the work of others dedicated to constructing light-driven catalytic systems to produce hydrogen and other solar fuels from water.”

It’s pretty much unanimous that the artificial leaf represents a major development and one that has even more amazing potential for growth and innovation. Stay tuned for more groundbreaking developments in solar power potential because they are everywhere.

New ‘Artificial Leaf’ is a Real Gamechanger is a post from: Boots On The Roof

The rest is here: New ‘Artificial Leaf’ is a Real Gamechanger

Boots on the Roof rings in the new year with a new Partnership

Unirac! Wow these guys are tough! Not only are they tough… they are fast too. Boots on the Roof is excited to announce our partnership with Unirac, and the addition of their ISYS Ground Mount  to our Mega Lab! Lots of our students have requested training on larger ground mounts, which is one reason we are happy to be incorporating this system into our classes. This system is said to be one of the fastest systems to install with the least amount of labor. Unirac claims an installation time of more than 10 modules per man-hour, making it a great option to teach our commercial students!

Why do we like Unirac for our students? Ground mount systems are a growing part of solar in North America. Unirac is always looking for ways to improve the design of their products, with the intention of reducing installation time.  For this reason, the ISYS Ground Mount is an ideal option for large scale commercial projects that we are proud to offer as an option to our students. Thank you Unirac!

 

Boots on the Roof rings in the new year with a new Partnership is a post from: Boots On The Roof

See the rest here: Boots on the Roof rings in the new year with a new Partnership

New Solar Tower Generates Power 24/7

Everyone wants a solar plant that can generate power 24/7, in fact some consider the ability to generate solar power at night the Holy Grail. Well, time to drink of the healing water because a Spanish solar plant has found a way to make a solar plant generate power throughout the night – using energy storage.

The massive solar plant takes up 457 acres of beautiful Spanish countryside. However, it puts these acres to good use placing large mirrors in circles around a central tower at which they can direct their sunlight.

The development of the project was done Torresol Energy – a joint project done by the energy companies Sener and Masdar. The technology is different from many other focused solar thermal plants. Instead of heating and burning oil the Gemsolar plant heats molten salt. As the salt heats up it gives off steam that is then used to power a turbine. The brilliant part about the design is that the intense amount of heat directed to the molten salt will create a lot of excess heat which can then be stored in a molten salt tank to be used for power during the night – or when the weather gets cloudy.

Due to the fact that no fuel is burned, the solar plant will likely save close to 30,000 in carbon emissions each year. It will do this while producing close to 20 megawatts of energy and providing 27,500 households in Southern Spain with clean solar power.

Perhaps the most exciting part about this is that the technology will likely come to the United State sand other major countries soon. I should have more information on the specifics in the coming days or weeks.

The new mass solar plant designs are innovative, but not a replacement for the older rooftop solar panels. All these are necessary to power our society. Any new form of clean energy must be welcomed into the fold. Let us hope this new tower rises over countryside’s everywhere soon.

New Solar Tower Generates Power 24/7 is a post from: Boots On The Roof

Go here to read the rest: New Solar Tower Generates Power 24/7

Roofing As An Occupation

Would you like to contribute to this site?

Roofing MenuSubmit an ArticleSubmit a TipPlace your AdAdd URLRoofing Questions?Contact Us

Roofing As An Occupation
By Herbert Sanchez
Roofing and shingles is a process whereby tiles are laid partially overlapping in an ascending manner up and along rooftops. This is done as much for style as it is for structural and architectural soundness.
Roofing and shingles is a particular occupation that specializes in roof repair and coverings. This job entails making sure that roofs are attractive as well as providing protection from the elements and increment weather. The particular conditions wherein these specialized tradesmen and women perform roofing and shingles are met with certain building and fire codes and architectural standards of the countries, states, cities, or provinces in which the job is done. Further, learning roofing and shingles, like the trade work of electricians and plumbers, requires particular knowledge and skills that must be conducted and completed correctly, otherwise the roofs could pose a hazard to those living in the house. Patching up holes and cracked wood before appropriately covering the roof securely with shingle tiles is one example of this.
Materials used for roofing and shingles vary, but everything used is sturdy and safe architecturally and health-wise. Shingles used to be made of wood, but due to growing fire and structural hazard concerns, this material is rarely or seldom considered; instead, bitumen-soaked paper covered with aggregate (asphalt) or ceramic shingles are now used for their safer and more visually appealing nature.
Roofing and shingles also used standard appending. Shingles are tacked or nailed on securely, but only where the shingle tile meets the roof; shingle tiles are never tacked or nailed at the overlap. Such a procedure would be deemed less secure (as it is more difficult to nail through multiple asphalt shingle tiles), and the appearance looks awkward. For ceramic (and occasionally with the asphalt), a heavy-bonding tar or paste is sometimes used to attach the tiles to the roof. The shingle tiles are laid in a row along the bottom edge of the roof, and each ascending row, as said, overlaps the one beneath it by about half a length of the tile. The top edge of the roof is then capped.
Roofing slates, also call ‘slate shingles,’ are also used in roofing and shingles, and are applied the same way. Because of the heavy consistency of slate, its unlikely that nails or tacks are used; instead, paste or tar seems the better choice for a bonding method.
Roofing and shingles is a meticulous and time-consuming process that must be carefully rendered for a roof to acquire that architectural appeal. Not only should know-how be necessary, but careful movement and stepping are a definite requirement as well.
About the Author: Find more Roofing resources and other great topics at http://www.info-checkpoint.info.

Read the original here: Roofing As An Occupation

3-Tab Roofing Shingles

Would you like to contribute to this site?

Roofing MenuSubmit an ArticleSubmit a TipPlace your AdAdd URLRoofing Questions?Contact Us

3-Tab Roofing Shingles
By Steven Briesemeister
A shingle that shows 3 tabs, or measures 3
feet, is fittingly known as 3-tab roofing
shingles. They are normally guaranteed for 20
years and help the roof to have a smooth,
defined look. Depending on the manufacturer,
3-tab shingles are often available in 20, 25
or even 30 year limited warranties. They are
generally available in a variety of colors
and its also important to note that 3-tab
roofing shingles are some of the most cost
efficient shingles to use on your home.
Are 3-Tab Roofing Shingles For You?
Before deciding on 3-tab roofing shingles
for your home, check with your local
homeowners association. In addition to
certain restrictions that each association
may have, some do not allow the use of 3-tab
shingles. This may be true in areas that are
prone to high wind or other inclement
weather, but check with your local building
requirements to be sure.
Replacing 3-Tab Roofing Shingles
If you need to replace 3-tab roofing
shingles, you can either do the job yourself
or hire a professional roofing contractor,
such as Roofer911.com. If you decide to take
the job on yourself, choose a warm, dry day.
Do not work on the roof if it is wet or
slippery. Once youre on the roof, carefully
pry the tabs of the shingles upward, which
overlap the damaged one. Loosen the tabs and
the adhesive on the back of the shingle. Work
carefully to avoid damage to the neighboring
shingles. If you lift too many tabs on good
shingles, they may crack. For the shingle
that you are removing, look for the nails
holding it into place and remove them as
well. Once the shingle is out, remove any
debris from that area before placing the new
shingle. With your new shingle in hand,
search for the adhesive strips near the
bottom of each of the 3 tabs. Slide the new
shingle into place and secure it with nails.
You may use roofing cement to secure the
overlaying tabs.
Contacting A Professional
If you are uncomfortable working on your
roof, call a professional roofing contractor.
Roofer911.com has years of experience in
helping homeowners with all of their roofing
needs. We can help you, too. Give us a call
or fill in the form for a fast quote on your
project. We are here to answer all of your
questions and to provide you with quality
work, so please do not hesitate to contact
Roofer911.com for repair or replacement of
your roof.
About the Author: At Roofer911.com we
are Long
Island roofing contractors and Northern
Virginia roofing contractors who
specialize in all types of roofing
such as shingles, flat, roof replacement,
torch down and roof repair work for
residential and commercial accounts. Free
Estimates!

See original here: 3-Tab Roofing Shingles

Asphalt Shingles

Would you like to contribute to this site?

Roofing MenuSubmit an ArticleSubmit a TipPlace your AdAdd URLRoofing Questions?Contact Us

Asphalt Shingles
By Marcus Peterson

Asphalt shingles are the most commonly sold
shingles in the
industry, and statistics show that they can
be easily termed the
most dominant variety on the roofing market.

Relatively cheaper than most other types of
shingles, (roughly
at around $0.80 per square foot) they are
vastly used all across
the USA and Canada. But, as far as costs of
asphalt shingles are
concerned, they would generally vary
according to geographical
location, altitude of a building, and slant
of the roof.

Asphalt shingles come in a wide range of
colors and designs and
most are quite durable. Records say that
these shingles can me
easily maintained and repaired as well.

Broadly available in two basic types like
organic and
fiberglass, they can be further classified
into a number of
other types like the basic three-tab shingle,
the no cutout
shingle, the dimensional shingle, the
angle-lap shingle, the
interlocking shingle, and others that look
like cedar or slate.

Organic shingles are mostly used in colder
temperatures like in
North America and Canada. Fiberglass
shingles, on the other hand
are popular in warmer temperatures like in
the southern and
western American states.

Before making one’s choice of asphalt
shingles, it is extremely
important to know and decide what one will be
buying. Proper
budgeting, the climates of the place, slope
of one’s roof, and
other issues have to be carefully considered.
The warranty of a
particular product should also be reviewed
and judged properly.
It is always best to buy shingles that meet
manufacturing
standards perfectly. This may sometimes be
heavier on one’s
pocketbook, but one should rather be safe
than sorry.

Installation of asphalt shingles is fairly
hassle-free. Although
professional roofing experts should always be
consulted, asphalt
shingles maybe installed by the house owner
himself, even if he
isn’t an expert. The shingles can be easily
installed on any
existing roof.

Asphalt shingles with their easy
availability, durability, and
fairly simple installation process, are quite
naturally the most
widely used and economically feasible roofing
option for
millions.

About the author:Shingles
provides
detailed information on Shingles, Thatch
Roofing Shingles,
Asphalt Shingles, Solar Shingles and more.
Shingles is affliated
with Roofing
Contractor.

View original post here: Asphalt Shingles

Best Wrinkle Cream

Concrete Roof Tile Business Opportunity Provides Excellent Income Potential!

Concrete Roof Tile Business Opportunity Provides Excellent Income Potential!
By Randy Wilson
Concrete Roof Tile Business:During the 2004 summer season, storms plagued the United States. Damages from the Hurricanes in Florida alone sent resources in the southern states scrambling. The shortage of qualified roofing professionals and supplies were felt immediately. Roofers from all over the United States began hunting down supplies and heading south. There were also many people who saw a roofing business opportunity and invested in roof tile businesses. Concrete roof tile has gone through some evolution over the years. Initially, the tiles were large, like sheets of corrugated roofing. The composition for the size did not hold up well, and lasted only about ten years. When the tiles were made smaller, it was found that the roof tiles held up twenty plus years and were tougher than the larger sheets. Another benefit of concrete roof tile is the ability to stain them, giving them the aesthetic flexibility that consumers want. Their durability and ease of installation are both benefits. Concrete roofing tiles provide great protection from heavy rain, hot sun, and strength. You can also be assured there is little risk of your tiles blowing off in high winds. The tiles size and composition are resistant to breakage as well. Concrete roofing tile can be produced with a small shop and small investment. This is an industry that is being used all over the world. Typical start up costs, not including land and buildings, can cost around one thousand dollars. Equipment can be purchased from hardware and concrete shops locally, or online. Supplies and mixes can be obtained the same way. There are typically two types of concrete roofing tile, both of which will require some learned skill to produce effectively. The first type is the fiber reinforced concrete tile. As the name implies, tiles are reinforced with sisal or coir fibers. The second type of tile is made with no fibers at all. These are known as micro-concrete roofing tiles. Quality control will be an important issue when producing roofing tiles. Micro-concrete roofing tiles will require a great deal of care and precision during the entire process of production or sub standard tiles will be produced. The standards for fiber-reinforced tiles can be produced with slightly less rigorous attention to detail, but you still want a good quality tile to make it to the roofer who buys them. Equipment requirements are actually minimal, but should be selected carefully for quality. A tile vibrator machine, moulds, plastic sheets, batching boxes, a water curing tank, and a table to work on are about the essentials. Your supplies should include sand, water, and cement. The sand should be of the best quality, having a regular grain-size grading. Make sure that the grain size is not too silty, as this will provide sub standard tiles. Once you learn the techniques of producing good quality tile, you will be able to market your tile to local roofers and hardware stores. Working on your sales pitch will be important, especially defining the benefits of concrete roofing tile. The benefits of concrete tile are easy to explain and should make for a great sales pitch to perspective clientele. Concrete roof tile production can also lead to concrete roof tile repair. If you have roofing experience, you will be ahead of the game. Installing concrete roofing tile is no more difficult than most other roofing materials. Always have extra tiles on hand to be able to assist with repair jobs. A concrete roof tile business is ideal for someone willing to make the educational investment. Most of the time involved will be in learning to produce good quality tile. Once you have established your techniques, you should have no trouble in selling your tiles on the roofing market! Copyright Randy Wilson, All Rights Reserved.
About the Author: Randy has dozens more home based business articles such as In Home Daycare Businesses, Earthworm Growing Business and Medical Billing Service..

See the original post: Concrete Roof Tile Business Opportunity Provides Excellent Income Potential!

SIPs Insulated Dog Houses at the Top of the Market

Pompano Beach, FL (PRWEB) October 21, 2006

At USA-Canine-Houses, we know how important our pets are in our lives. They are always sad to see us leave and happy to see us return home. Our pets enrich our lives to a great extent. They become part of our family and are our best friends. They ask very little from us. A place to sleep, good food and a welcome pat on the head is what they live for.

They will never do us wrong, and are always there with that wagging tail and a happy view of life. It is no wonder that here, at USA-Canine-Houses, we are

concerned with the safety and comfort of our friends.

Our insulated doghouses give the utmost in protection from the freezing winters and the blazing summers. They are built with the finest materials available and are quite reasonably priced for the protection they offer to our best friends.Optional accessories can be installed that make USA-Canine-Houses the absolute best living quarters that your best friend or friends deserve.

Product Value:

Our custom doghouses are built using the highest quality materials in the industry. We start with select grade spruce wood framing and the highest qualityReflectix insulation on all wall, roof and gable panels. These panels are primed inside to prevent moisture penetration and sealed with an environmentally safe wood preservative on the outside.Our doghouse panels are lightweight and stronger than any other wood construction technology.

We finish our doghouses with two coats of Sherwin William’s Super paint. This high quality UV resistant 20-year outdoor paint paint provides a beautiful satin sheen. Our additional insulation option brings the highest insulation value per package size in the industry and contains the following benefits:

1. Is waterproof and non-absorbent.

2. Provides Class A/Class 1 fire rated protection.

3. Provides 19 DB Soundproofing.

4. Convenient flange tabs on sides.

5. Does not mildew or promote fungus growth.

6. Does not provide nesting for birds, rodents or insects.

7. Is safe for pets as there are no fibers to breath or cause skin irritation.

8. Has more insulation value than 6 inches of common mass insulation products.

9. Reflects 97% Radiant Heat.

10. R-Value of 14.5

RE/MAX Survey Finds Homes Become More Modest As Builders Keep Costs Down In Chicago Real Estate And Illinois Real Estate Markets

Chicago, IL (PRWEB) January 23, 2009

Not long ago, every American family seemed to be seeking a trophy house – and new homes rapidly became bigger and grander as builders responded to those demands in the Illinois real estate and Chicago real estate markets. Today, the situation has changed markedly, especially for Chicago homes priced at $ 400,000 or less, but even homes in higher price brackets are making a nod toward modesty.

“We’re seeing a definite trend toward affordability and value in new moderately priced homes in the Chicago real estate and Illinois real estate markets,” reports Debbie Maxvold, broker/owner of RE/MAX Accord which has offices in Bloomingdale, IL and Rockford, IL. Her organization is heavily involved in marketing new homes in the Rockford area.

Larger home builders are shifting away from offering homes of 2,500 to 3,500 square feet and instead are emphasizing designs in the 1,600 to 2,500-square-foot range, according to Maxvold. To make the more limited amount of space as functional as possible, many new homes now utilize a great room concept, with one large living area that is open to the kitchen replacing the separate living and family rooms of more traditional floor plans.

Kathy Dames of RE/MAX Realty of Joliet in Joliet, Illinois, is seeing similar shifts in the new homes being offered in the Chicago real estate market of Will County.

“Builders are looking at the future and scaling back. They are building simpler designs that deliver the most house for the money. Instead of building homes of 2,800 to 3,000 square feet, they are building more homes of 1,800 to 2,300 square feet. And rather than offering an oversized kitchen and family room and separate living room, the homes being built now provide a somewhat smaller kitchen and a large great room but eliminate the traditional living room. They also have 9-foot ceilings throughout rather than the volume ceilings common a few years ago,” said Dames.

Other techniques builders are using to keep Illinois real estate home prices as low as possible while still delivering the primary features consumers desire include less expensive trim and fixtures, smaller lot sizes and less extensive standard landscaping. Some designs make greater use of shared baths, rather than giving each bedroom a private bath, according to Dames.

Among somewhat more upscale Chicago real estate homes that typically sell for $ 400,000 to $ 600,000, the size and features haven’t been changing as quickly, according to Tom Oliva of RE/MAX Central in Roselle, Illinois.

Lots are getting smaller because of the high cost of farm land, he reported. For instance, in Hampshire, IL, at the northwestern edge of the Chicago real estate market, the typical new suburban lot has shrunk by about a third. Standard lots ranged from one-half to a full acre seven or eight years ago, but current dimensions are typically around one-third acre, according to Oliva.

The builders of these homes are putting more emphasis on using long-lasting materials and minimizing maintenance costs so that owning the home is less burdensome to the family budget.

To do that, said Oliva, builders are installing more energy efficient appliances and furnaces, moving from wood shake roofing to architectural shingles and replacing cedar siding with a fibrous concrete siding that is essentially maintenance free for 50 years.

At the upper end of the Illinois real estate market, keeping costs down isn’t as much of a concern, but homes are still becoming less grand in terms of design and square footage, according to Marsha Ulbrich of RE/MAX Unlimited Northwest in Lake Zurich, IL.

“We are building somewhat smaller homes in the $ 1 million-plus segment of the market, but what we are seeing more of are high-tech amenities, such as centrally controlled light, sound and security systems,” said Ulbrich. “There are still homes of 10,000 square feet or more being built, but most are two-story homes totaling 5,000 square feet, with perhaps another 3,000 square feet in a walkout basement level.”

Ulbrich also sees a new emphasis on coziness, with fewer grand spaces and volume ceilings.

“Not long ago it was difficult to sell a luxury home without volume ceilings, but now families want more of a sense of intimacy along with entertainment capabilities,” she said. “These buyers are doing more of their entertaining at home, rather than taking guests out.”

One trend Ulbrich isn’t seeing in most luxury homes is the first-floor master suite. “The families building these homes tend to be young enough so that they still have children in the house, and the parents want their bedroom on the same level as the children’s bedrooms. The exceptions are in homes built specifically for empty nesters, where a first-floor master is becoming quite common.”

According to Susan Rhoades of RE/MAX Suburban in Wheaton, IL, most new upper bracket houses being built these days are custom projects.

“The major changes we’re seeing are in the kitchen/family room area,” she said. “Kitchens have become very elaborate and are open to large family rooms, while the more formal rooms in the house, the living room and dining room, have become smaller.”

Baths, like kitchens, are getting additional upgrades, such as multi-head shower units and full-body sprays, as well as saunas or steam showers. Energy saving features, including tankless water heaters and floors with radiant heat, also are being included.

Another shift that Rhoades has noticed is the growing importance of basement areas, which have, she said, “become a continuation of the upstairs living areas.” These contemporary basements, typically accessed via a wide and open staircase, include such features as a home theater area, wine cellar and recessed lighting, allowing the builder to deliver more finished high-value space at less cost.

“Patio areas are becoming more sophisticated and have replaced decks as the preferred setting,” contends Rhoades, and they often include such features as an outdoor kitchen, fireplace and seating walls.

Two features that seem to be showing up with increasing frequency in new single-family homes across the pricing spectrum are the home office and the three-car garage.

“People want a home office because so many folks now work from home much of the time,” said Debbie Maxvold. “We even see families that would like two home offices because both spouses work at home, but in those instances, they usually convert a bedroom into the second office.”

As for garages, “the three-car garage is here to stay, but to save money when necessary, you will see more tandem designs where the third parking space is behind the other two, rather than garages with three separate doors,” reports Kathy Dames.

In the luxury home market, noted Ulbrich, four-car garages have become the standard, and most homes in that category provide even more parking because it isn’t unusual for a family to have five or six cars if there are teenagers in the house.

While new home construction nationally is at its slowest pace in many years right now, Dames believes that when the housing market does turn around, new home developments will be the first to come back, in part because many of the homes being offered will be more affordable than in the recent past.

“The homes we’ll be seeing at that point will be closer in size to those built in the mid-1980s than to the homes built between 1995 and 2005,” she said.

RE/MAX is the leader in northern Illinois real estate sales and has been number one in residential sales in the Chicago real estate market since 1989. In 2008, the RE/MAX network in northern Illinois closed apprxoimately $ 8 billion in sales.

The RE/MAX Northern Illinois real estate network consists of 3,000 associates and 145 individually owned and operated RE/MAX offices that provide residential, relocation and commercial real estate services throughout the northern one-third of Illinois. The network’s Web site system, http://www.illinoisproperty.com, is an outstanding resource for buyers and sellers. RE/MAX Northern Illinois is part of RE/MAX International, a global real estate organization with 7,000 independently owned offices and 100,000 member sales associates in 73 countries.

###