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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
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    • CommentAuthorjamesingram
    • CommentTimeJan 20th 2010 edited
     
    Saw this a while back , just started to look at some of it . Huge amount of info
    "there is a wealth of information that is not found anywhere else"
    Thought it would be useful to post , let me know if you find anything interesting
    cheers Jim

    http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2009/10/how-to-make-everything-yourself-online-lowtech-resources.html


    "How to make everything yourself - online low-tech resources
    Energy Bulletin pointed us to the website of Practical Action (previously known as the Schumacher Centre for Technology & Development), an online resource devoted to low-technology solutions for developing countries. The site hosts many manuals that can also be of interest for low-tech DIYers in the developed world. They cover energy, agriculture, food processing, construction and manufacturing, just to name some important categories.


    We would like to add to this the impressive online library put together by software engineer Alex Weir. The 900 documents listed here (13 gigabytes in total) are not as well organised and presented as those of Practical Action, but there is a wealth of information that is not found anywhere else. The library is also hosted here (without search engine).

    Other interesting online resources that offer manuals and instructions are Appropedia, Howtopedia and Open Source Ecology. These are all wiki's, so you can cooperate. The Centre for Alternative technologies has many interesting manuals, too, but the majority of those are not for free.

    Previously: The museum of old techniques / A do-it-ourselves guide. This article was first published at NTM."

    http://practicalaction.org/practicalanswers/

    http://www.cd3wd.com/cd3wd_40/cd3wd/index.htm

    http://www.appropedia.org/Welcome_to_Appropedia

    http://en.howtopedia.org/wiki/Main_Page

    http://www.cat.org.uk/index.tmpl?refer=index&init=1

    http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2009/02/the-museum-of-old-techniques.html
    •  
      CommentAuthorbetterroof
    • CommentTimeJan 21st 2010
     
    I shall have a look - good find!
  1.  
    More along the same lines
    How to Make Everything Ourselves: Open Modular Hardware
    http://www.lowtechmagazine.com/2012/12/how-to-make-everything-ourselves-open-modular-hardware.html
  2.  
    Interesting

    I am now convinced that our "civilisation" will experience an extraordinary revolution in a few years.

    3D printing combined with Graphene technology is going to be HUGE! In about 10 - 20 years.

    Imagine being able to print your own PV panels, not like todays panels, but thin film at 20 to 40 percent efficiency
  3.  
    I presume you feed these 3D printers with granular raw material eg. polyproplene . Imagine printable parts
    that at end of use could just be groundup and reprinted into the another item.
    Powered as you say by low cost recyclable PV.
    What would I be using for power on a cold January evening though ?:confused:
    We need some energy storage innovation to compliment the above.
  4.  
    At the moment these machines print with a range of raw materials. But what Im imagining is when we can print with graphene, this will be a killer technology. Read a bit about graphene and it becomes clear its a remarkable material that could be used across the board.


    http://www.zdnet.com/the-10-strangest-facts-about-graphene-3040093050/

    "But what is it that makes this material so remarkable? Here are 10 of the strangest facts about graphene.

    1. Strength
    "The most amazing thing to me about graphene is its strength. This is a sheet of atoms that you can pick up. That blows my mind."

    So says Professor James (Jim) Tour of Rice University in Texas, and who are we to argue with that? A sheet of atoms that you can pick up: say it out loud to yourself a couple of times.

    Everyone you ask about graphene's amazing properties says the same thing: it is really hard to pick one feature when the material is so astonishing. So let's consider a few more of them.

    2. No band gap
    Graphene has no band gap. A band gap is the gap between the energy of an electron when it is bound to an atom, and the so-called conduction band, where it is free to move around. An electron can't have an energy level between those two states.
    This makes graphene a wonderful candidate for use in photovoltaic (PV) cells, for instance, because it can absorb photons with energy at every frequency — photons of different frequencies of light are converted to electrons with matching energy levels. A material with a band gap can't convert wavelengths of light that correspond to the forbidden energy states of the electrons. No band gap means everything is accepted.

    This opens the tantalising possibility of highly efficient PV cells, but it's a problem if you want to use graphene in transistors, where you need the band gap to provide the isolation necessary if you want it to act as a switch that can be turned off.

    It is possible to induce a small band gap in graphene by doping it. This is good enough for very fast amplifiers for radio work, but for transistors that make efficient logic circuitry you need a bigger gap.

    3. Ballistic conduction
    Yes, this is a really weird one: ambient temperature "unimpeded" conduction of electrons. It was observed in multi-walled carbon nanotubes at least as far back as 2002, and since graphene is basically an unzipped carbon nanotube, it does it too.
    The hexagonal lattice has the longest "mean free path" of any known material — of the order of microns. This is the distance an electron can travel freely without bumping into anything, or having its path disrupted by scattering; the things that induce resistance. When the mean free path is longer than the dimensions of the material, you get ballistic transport.

    In graphene, the mean free path is of the order of 65 microns — long enough that electronic components could be made that would operate at ambient temperatures with virtually no resistance. This is similar to superconductivity, but at room temperature.

    4, 5 & 6. Best at electricity
    And in case that doesn't impress you, Manchester University's Dr Leonid Ponomarenko points out that graphene also has "the highest current density (a million times that of copper) at room temperature; the highest intrinsic mobility (100 times more than in silicon); and conducts electricity in the limit of no electrons". Which means it can carry more electricity more efficiency, faster and with more precision than any other material.

    7. Transparency
    Back to Professor Tour for this one: "Another amazing thing about graphene is that you can see it. You can lay a sheet on a white piece of paper and actually see it. It is amazingly transparent, absorbing just 2.3 percent of light that lands on it, but if you have a blank sheet to compare it to, you can see that it is there." That means you can see a single layer of atoms with your naked eye, if they're graphene.
    As well as making graphene even more useful as a potential solar cell component, its transparency makes it ideal for use in touchscreens. Currently most screens are made from Indium Tin Oxide (ITO), which absorbs 10 percent of incident light. But ITO is quite brittle, whereas graphene is extremely...

    8 & 9. Elastic
    Well, for a crystal, anyway. Graphene stretches up to 20 percent of its length. And yet it is also the stiffest known material — even stiffer than diamond.

    10. Thermal conductivity
    Graphene also beats diamond in thermal conductivity. In fact, graphene now holds the record for conducting heat — it's better than any other known material.

    11. Impermeable
    Here's one for luck. Graphene is also the most impermeable material ever discovered. "Even helium atoms cannot squeeze through," Dr Ponomarenko says. This makes it a great material for building highly sensitive gas detectors, for example, since even the smallest quantity of a gas will get caught in its lattice, changing its electrical properties.

    All of the above makes graphene a good contender for yet another record: the material with the most records. For a substance that's only been closely studied since 2004, this makes it the child prodigy of material science, and one well worth the intense interest it continues to generate.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2013
     
    Posted By: jamesingramWhat would I be using for power on a cold January evening though ?
    just print it!
  5.  
    You print the high capacity graphene battery along with the inverter, PV panels etc etc
  6.  
    Graphene is one of the strongest materials ever created, 200 times stronger than steel and even more durable than diamonds. According to researchers quoted by BBC News, "It would take an elephant balanced on a pencil to break through a sheet of graphene the thickness of Saran Wrap."

    It's highly flexible and can be stretched like rubber without losing its strength.

    It's the thinnest physical material in the world - 3 million sheets of graphene stacked atop one another would be just 1 millimeter thick. It also weighs virtually nothing.

    It conducts both heat and electricity better than copper, and could eventually replace silicon in circuitry, potentially changing the nature of every electronic device in use today. Imagine cell phones the size of a strand of wire or big-screen high-definition televisions no thicker than wall paper - and capable of being rolled up into a one-inch tube and moved anywhere.

    It's incredibly energy efficient and a potentially eco-friendly source of power. MIT researchers recently found they could generate electric current by shining light on graphene, meaning it could be used to revolutionize solar-power collection. A separate study at Northwestern University found graphene could be used to charge lithium-ion batteries - like those used in electric vehicles - 10 times faster and give them 10 times the storage capacity of present models.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeJan 24th 2013
     
    Are they still having trouble making it consistently and without contaminants.

    I like 3D printing, used to do it in the 90's, was sticky resin and a laser then, sintering metal powder and a larger laser sounds fun.
  7.  
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130116102018.htm
    A Kansas State University researcher is developing more efficient ways to save costs, time and energy when creating nanomaterials and lithium-ion batteries

    "The research is significant because the researchers created these graphene sheets by quickly heating and cooling the copper and nickel substrates at atmospheric pressures, meaning that scientists no longer need a vacuum to create few-layer-thick graphene films and can save energy, time and cost, Singh said."

    Gurpreet Singh, assistant professor of mechanical and nuclear engineering, and his research team have published two recent articles on newer, cheaper and faster methods for creating nanomaterials that can be used for lithium-ion batteries. In the past year, Singh has published eight articles -- five of which involve lithium-ion battery research.
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2013
     
    Posted By: bot de paille
    3D printing combined with Graphene technology is going to be HUGE! In about 10 - 20 years.


    Er, I wouldn't hold your breath. The melting temperature of graphene is something like 4900K, which is one of the highest known. So whatever your 3D printer is made of would melt a long, long time before the graphene did.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2013
     
    Who needs a 3D printer to make graphene, I use a sheet of paper that I have scribbled on with a pencil and then the sticky side of some cellotape (other makes available) to rip a layer of pencil lead off the paper.

    I am having trouble making it work as a solar cell, battery or supermodel, But I am not giving up just yet :wink:
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2013
     
    You might need to roll it a bit flatter with a rolling pin.
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteamyTea
    • CommentTimeJan 25th 2013
     
    Ah

    The wisdom of the crowd, we should have it done by tea time :bigsmile:
  8.  
    Posted By: Seret
    Posted By: bot de paille
    3D printing combined with Graphene technology is going to be HUGE! In about 10 - 20 years.


    Er, I wouldn't hold your breath. The melting temperature of graphene is something like 4900K, which is one of the highest known. So whatever your 3D printer is made of would melt a long, long time before the graphene did.


    No, not true. Graphene has already been printed with a modified Epson Sylus printer. A normal DVD player has also been used with a DVD was dusted with graphite oxide, creating a layer of Graphene.

    http://www.3ders.org/articles/20111128-first-printed-graphene-electronics.html

    "Recently, Andrea Ferrari and peers at the University of Cambridge in the UK have managed to solve this problem and demonstrated a giant leap forward. By using a modified Epson Stylus 1500 Ink-jet printer and some customised cartridges, they have printed out onto a Silicon based substrate.

    They peel graphene layers off with ultrasound (in jargon: sonication) from a graphite block and filter them so that the largest pieces are no longer clogging the printer head. Then they solve the flakes in the solvent N-methylpyrrolidone, or NMP, which counteracts the infamous coffee ring effect(In physics, a coffee ring is a pattern left by a puddle of particle-laden liquid after it evaporates). The ink is accumulated on the edge by this coffee ring effect. Another nice feature is that NMP is not very toxic. The last step was to place the NMP with dissolved grafeenvlokken in a printhead. The researchers printed a number of circuits and thin film transistors.

    http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/News/2012/March/graphene-dvd-player-burn-supercapacitor.asp
  9.  
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oEFwyoWKXo

    youtube video from UCLA, demonstrating using a PC + DVD drive.

    Imagine having an energy storage device that stores as much energy as a conventional battery, yet, can be charged 100 to 1000 times faster. Supercapacitors store charge in electrochemical double layers whereas batteries store charge through electrochemical reactions. Although supercapacitors can charge and discharge much faster than batteries, they are still limited by low energy densities and slow rate capabilities. Researchers at UCLA have successfully used an inexpensive precursor (graphite oxide) to produce high-performance graphene-based supercapacitors using a computerized LightScribe DVD drive. These devices exhibit ultrahigh energy density values in different electrolytes approaching those of batteries, yet they can be charged in seconds. The devices can be charged and discharged for more than 10,000 cycles without losing much in performance compared with a normal life-time of less than 1000 cycles typical for batteries. Additionally, the devices are completely flexible and maintain excellent performance under high mechanical stress.
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 26th 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: bot de paille
    No, not true. Graphene has already been printed with a modified Epson Sylus printer.


    Right I get you. So you're not actually talking about AM using graphene itself then. I still think your 10-20 year time frame from the price of graphene to become affordable enough to see widespread use is pretty quick. It's a pretty exotic material.
  10.  
    AM?
    • CommentAuthorSeret
    • CommentTimeJan 26th 2013
     
    Additive Manufacturing. Generic catchall name that covers the bargain bin RepRap style extrusion printing, as well as more techy stuff like Selective Laser Sintering, stereolithography, etc.
  11.  
    Posted By: SeretAdditive Manufacturing. Generic catchall name that covers the bargain bin RepRap style extrusion printing, as well as more techy stuff like Selective Laser Sintering, stereolithography, etc.


    Ah OK. In that case yes, techniques are currently being developed with graphene using the above mentioned AM processes, extrusion printing, SLS and stereolithography. Its a very fast developing area of research and costs are dropping all the time.
  12.  
    It certainly sounds promising , In fact I'd say I even find it quite exciting . Lots more in this Graphene than I realised.
  13.  
    Swedish uni wins billion-euro EU science prize

    The European Commission announced on Monday that researchers at Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg would be granted 1 billion euros for their work in developing graphene.

    The Graphene Flagship, led by Professor Jari Kinaret from Chalmers University, was the joint winner of the Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) prize announced in Brussels.

    "You've heard of Silicon Valley. I want Europe to be home to its successor – Graphene Valley," European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes said in a speech announcing the news.

    Kroes likened the process for claiming the EU's "biggest research cash award ever" as the "X-Factor for Science", invoking the popular television talent search programme.

    The Chalmers-led project which emerged as one of two winners in the Flagship project involves over 100 research groups, with 136 principal investigators, including four Nobel laureates.

    "Although the flagship is extremely extensive, it cannot cover all areas," said Professor Jari Kinaret, Flagship Director, in a statement.

    "Graphene production, however, is obviously central to our project."

    Graphene, an extremely light form of single-layered carbon, could revolutionize electronics, as well as the car and plane industry, Chalmers wrote in a statement.

    Key applications include fast electronic and optical devices, flexible electronics, functional lightweight components and advanced batteries.

    The Graphene Flagship's mission is "to take graphene and related layered materials from academic laboratories to society, revolutionize multiple industries and create economic growth and new jobs in Europe," Chalmers wrote.

    Graphene research has won accolades before, with Professors Andre Geim and Kostya Novoselov of the University of Manchester winning the 2010 Nobel Prize in Physics for their own research with the substance.

    While Chalmers is leading the project, four other Swedish universities are also involved, including Umeå University, Linköping University, and Stockholm University.

    The Graphene project took home the FET award together with French researchers for their work on The Human Brain project, a programme working with brain simulation in France which also has a Swedish connection through a branch of the project being managed by Karolinska Institutet near Stockholm.

    Each project will given 10 years worth of funding for their ground breaking research.

    The Local/og

    http://www.thelocal.se/45862/20130128/

    [Edit] Just to clarify the news story above from a Swedish based website seems rather biased the BBC reports that:

    The graphene funding will be spread across 126 academic and industrial research groups. It will be coordinated by Professor Jari Kinaret of Chalmers University of Technology at Gothenburg in Sweden who has stressed that it not attempt to match competitors in all areas.
    • CommentAuthorrhamdu
    • CommentTimeJan 28th 2013
     
    Love to see the Spring 2033 Screwfix catalogue if all this comes true.
  14.  
    I would say that we are with graphene where the Internet was in 1990 and its place in society, which was very very limited outside of academia.

    fast forward 23 years to now and look back over the growth of the net and the place it has taken in our daily lives
    • CommentAuthorHenry Sears
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2013 edited
     
    I find it interesting that this thread started with an effort to point us in the direction of empowering intermediate technologies directly accessible to ordinary people and communities, using locally available renewable resources, and now we've all got carried away with something that seems inevitably to end up being exploited at the hands of the military-industrial complex and all its corporate interests for massive profits, with all the implications that brings.

    Wouldn't it be nice, for example, to know how to make effective, easy-to-use building sealants out of cheap, abundant and locally available feedstocks. That's the sort of stuff I'd like to know about...
  15.  
    Posted By: Henry Searsnow we've all got carried away with something that seems inevitably to end up being exploited at the hands of the military-industrial complex and all its corporate interests for massive profits, with all the implications that brings.


    my thoughts exactly.



    Posted By: bot de pailleI am now convinced that our "civilisation" will experience an extraordinary revolution in a few years.


    I agree, but I think it will be in the direction of low tech or appropriate tech or intermediate tech.

    When the oil is going or gone we won't need Graphene, we will need locally produced and minimally processed insulation materials, building materials, food... well everything really.

    Peter
    • CommentAuthorEd Davies
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2013
     
    Posted By: Peter ClarkWhen the oil is going or gone we won't need Graphene, we will need locally produced and minimally processed insulation materials, building materials, food... well everything really.

    Yes, up to a point - we will need locally produced and minimally processed bulk stuff. Also, I think we'll need to do a lot less travelling.

    However, I really don't think there's a need to give up on high tech stuff. There will be a need to do it very differently and much less wastefully, not assuming that gadgets will be obsolete and thrown away before the end of the battery life and so on.

    If we assume that the end of fossil fuels means the end of a large proportion of the population having access to a huge amount of information, entertainment, communication, and so on and don't make an effort to think ahead and work out how alternatives can work then it'll become a self-fulling prophecy.

    There seems to be a mindset that it's a choice between a fossil-fuel business-as-usual society or some rather dour and drab survival. Maybe it is but it seems silly not look for other solutions first.

    As to the graphene. Fine, interesting. Glad people are working on it. But it's still vapourware.
    • CommentAuthorEd Davies
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2013
     
    • CommentAuthorPeter Clark
    • CommentTimeJan 29th 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: Ed DaviesThere seems to be a mindset that it's a choice between a fossil-fuel business-as-usual society or some rather dour and drab survival. Maybe it is but it seems silly not look for other solutions first.


    I certainly try hard, consciously, not to subscribe to this 'simple choice' mindset.

    The thread was about low tech DIY, I understand that as meaning finding a way to do things less wastefully.

    In my mind low tech does not match dour and drab, but hi tech often seems to.

    The challenge might be to keep the best of traditional low tech and combine with the best of modern hi tech, but in a way that is practical when fossil fuels, and all that depends upon them, are in short supply.

    How do you envisage things working in a way that is not extremely low tech when we have no fossil fuels?

    Peter
   
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