EE&T News: January 10, 2011

EE&T News: January 10, 2011

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January 10, 2011 Issue:

• Will new requirements drive companies out of EnergyStar?
• When the garbage can is more energy efficient than the recycling bin
• The power quality of energy efficient lighting
• Fear and loathing in smart meter land
• A look inside the Chevy Volt
• Energy Shorts
• Featured video: Inside the Chevy Volt powertrain
• Dimming techniques for LED drivers

Will new requirements drive companies out of EnergyStar?

As of Jan.1,2011, manufacturers that want the Energy Star label must get certification from an independent lab. As a result, there are rumors afoot that manufacturers may start dropping out of the U.S. EPA's Energy Star program. These issues and more are the topic of the upcoming Illumination Summit commencing on Feb. 17 in Orlando, Fla. Keynoter Alex Baker, the EPA’s Lighting Program Manager for Energy Star will discuss Energy Star certification and the EPA’s position. Also on the agenda is Energy Star testing organization CSA, whose CEO Ash Sahi will talk about the certification process.
Check it out at
-- Leland Teschler, Editor, [email protected] Read More


When the garbage can is more energy efficient than the recycling bin

My friend Terry and I had each finished off a bottle of beer. I looked around for a recycling bin while Terry just pitched his bottle in the trash. Was Terry indifferent to the environment? Nah. He works at one of the biggest breweries in the U.S. and knows first-hand what happens to recycled glass. “We can't use recycled glass for making bottles. It's just too brittle. So glass put in recycling bins generally ends up in landfills anyway,” he explains. READ MORE Read More

The power quality of energy efficient lighting

One aspect of energy efficient lighting that is rarely discussed is the way in which it will affect the utility power system. With this in mind, we decided to measure the new modern light bulbs. We tested incandescent light bulbs (ICBs), compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), and light emitting diode bulbs (LEDs). This is not an exhaustive test in that it covers only a few representative samples available from large retail chains. Nevertheless, we feel the results are a good snapshot of how present-day lighting products behave. READ MORE Read MoreFear and loathing in smart meter land

You can say one thing for smart meters: The concept of a utility or some other entity having an influence on homeowner electrical demand seems to have driven certain members of the blogosphere off the deep end. The Web is rife with conspiracy theories about sinister ulterior motives for putting such devices in the home. A lot of them have the tone of this one: “They will be able to shut your power OFF anytime they want. There will be rolling blackouts in your future caused only by your supplier wanting to conserve energy or re-route it to large corporations, and nothing else." READ MORE Read More

A look inside the Chevy Volt

The Chevy Volt is in the headlines, and with good reason. The most intriguing feature of the 2011 Chevrolet Volt five-door sedan is its powertrain. It includes two electric motors, three hydraulic clutches, and a planetary gear set, according to Chevy. From a driver’s perspective, the Volt decides which motor(s) to use, when to rely on the battery pack, and when to switch the engine on or off. READ MORE Read More

Energy Shorts

A more efficient jet engine
Sailing around the world under solar power
The plug-together wind turbine
What is a green mortgage?
Solar cells printed on toilet paper?
Nanostructures could make Li-ion batteries car-worthy
Read More

Featured video: Inside the Chevy Volt powertrain

General Motors engineer Doug Parks explains how the Chevy Volts ICE interacts with its electric drive motors. Run time, 3:50.
Read More


Dimming techniques for LED drivers

The quest for energy efficiency has led manufacturers to investigate ways of dimming all kinds of lighting technologies, including those that usually can't be dimmed. For example, even with electronic ballasts, HID (high-intensity discharge) lamps cannot be dimmed to much more than half of their maximum light output. In contrast, it is much more straightforward to dim LEDs. LEDs' p-n junction has a fairly constant forward voltage drop constituting a stable load that can be driven by a constant dc current source. READ MORE Read More


LED Module LMR4 from Cree in Stock at Digi-Key
LED Module LMR4 offers lighting manufacturers access to Cree's TrueWhite® technology, which mixes the light from red and unsaturated yellow LEDs to create a beautiful, warm, white light. This patented approach enables the preservation of high color consistency throughout the life of the product and CRI of at least 90 while maintaining high luminous efficacy. The result makes these modules ideal for lighting applications such as restaurant, retail, and hospitality lighting where high CRI and efficacy are required. www.digikey.


Thomas Division
Thomas provides OEM pump and compressor innovations for environmental applications with oil-less technology offerings including WOB-L® and articulated piston, diaphragm, rotary, linear, and liquid pumps.
Read More

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International Rectifier


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