The Efficiency Zone presented by ECN Magazine

Welcome to The Efficiency Zone Newsletter

  In this inaugural issue and every issue hereafter, you'll see the best news and op-ed from the cleanest, greenest, nature-friendliest part of Our goal is to help you not only save the planet by using technology, but also to save money and build smarter products. Meanwhile, we totally dig your feedback. Send your comments to our free-range, organically-grown editor Evan Koblentz and check out our links library.


  Wozniak's New Goal is Efficient Housing
Op-Ed: Apple Inc. co-founder and legendary hacker Steve Wozniak recently found a new passion in energy-efficient housing. We interviewed Woz by e-mail. His preface: "I'm too busy to do this [interview] now, but I'll do it anyway. I have to say that I'm not a green expert but did encounter some technologies that were very right for a home"...  continue
(Also check out Jon Titus' book review.) 

  HP, Lenovo, Dell Support Solar Power for PCs
Productive Product: Let's start by clarifying a vital point: this story is about solar power adapters for conventional PCs, not about "solar-powered PCs" per se. You don't actually get a solar panel slapped to the side of your tower case; you get 86 pounds of schleppability. But you also get to help save the planet and circumvent your local power company...  continue 

  Approval Nears for Chicago Green Exchange
Energy News: A 93-year-old, 250,000 sq. ft. factory in Chicago is becoming a shopping, office, and housing complex exclusively for environmentally-friendly products and services. The local government is almost done with the permit approvals stage. From electric car dealerships to tree-free paper products to high-tech, dorm-like incubation space for start-ups, the Green Exchange will be a very unique place. Whether it becomes profitable is another story that time will tell...  continue 

  Homecoming for Earth at Green U.
Op-Ed: If the world's industrial and information cultures are going Earth-friendly, then we'll need a new generation of trained technical professionals to be leaders. Universities are catching on to this demand by offering a variety of courses devoted to clean technology. Here in ECN's home state of New Jersey, three top-flight schools exemplify the trend – the New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rutgers University, and Stevens Institute of Technology...  continue 

Texas Instruments - Texas Instruments CC2431

Texas Instruments CC2431 true System-on-Chip is ideal for systems where ultra-low power consumption is required and includes a module for location detection.  Continue 
ON Semiconductor - DM300027 Starter Board

Microchip's DM300027 Starter Board is an ideal prototyping tool to validate key design requirements and supports 28-pin PIC24 microcontrollers and DSC devices.  Continue 


  Small, Precision Mass Airflow Sensor Uses MEMS Technology
Omron Electronic Components announced the availability of the D6F unidirectional MEMS mass flow sensor which uses a thermopile element that converts thermal energy into electrical energy and is capable of measuring mass airflow up to 3 lpm with a ±5 percent full-scale repeatable accuracy...  continue 
  USB Power Manager With Power Selection, Battery Charging, Buck Regulators
Linear Technology's LTC3557 multi-function power management device for Li-Ion/Polymer battery applications integrates a linear PowerPath manager, a standalone battery charger, ideal diode, three high efficiency synchronous buck regulators and an always-on LDO in a low-profile 4 mm x 4 mm QFN package...  continue 
  Wireless Nodes and Battery Modules for Wireless Sensing Network
Banner Engineering Corp. introduced new FlexPower Nodes for the company's SureCross Wireless Network. FlexPower allows a SureCross Node to operate using 10V to 30V DC line power, solar panels, or a FlexPower battery module in remote or difficult-to-access locations...  continue 
  LED Floodlight, Indoor/Outdoor Bulb Offers Energy Savings
LEDtronics' R30 LED Reflector bulbs are direct incandescent replacements on standard 25 mm Edison bases. They're available in five emission angles (15°, 20°, 30°, 40°, 95°) and in 120V AC. Other voltages from 12V to 240V AC or DC are available...  continue 
  Solar-Powered Cell Phones Debut
Solar power worked pretty well for calculators in the 1980s, and now it's available in cell phones from China's Hi-Tech Wealth company. Like any other new technology, this does not come cheap: think about the $500 range and for now it's only available in China. But it's a great way to show off your green-friendliness to friends and colleagues without having to invest in a hybrid car, and the extra talk time is very useful. Several new models are due out soon, hopefully coming to Western shores...  continue 
  Sacramento's Regenerative Trains
The city of Sacramento will soon test a system for regenerative braking on its light-rail trains. The idea is to capture the heat energy that exits trains when they're braking, and redirect that energy back into the grid. Similar technology is already used in hybrid cars, so this isn't too experimental, and therefore the prospects look good for taking it into production...  continue 
  ZAP Cars Go Zoom Zoom Zoom
We last gave an update on electric sports cars three months ago... but now we're hearing about ZAP ("Zero Air Pollution") which is promising a $60,000 crossover SUV that goes 0-60 in 4.8 seconds and can travel 350 miles with one charge...  continue 
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