A new project called SolarCoin seeks to make investments in solar energy just a little bit more attractive for anyone who may be on the fence. It’s a brand new digital currency of the Bitcoin ilk whose creators are offering to disburse to anyone who can prove that they’ve generated solar electricity. Right now, each megawatt-hour of electricity that your solar panels pump into the grid will get you one SolarCoin.
The goal, they say, is very simple. “SolarCoin will help make more solar energy,” currency founder Nick Gogerty tells Txchnologist. “In economics, whatever has more money flowing through it generally gets amplified. Throwing SolarCoin at solar electricity producers is the goal.”
To that end, SolarCoin Foundation volunteers began verifying electricity production claims in a pilot program this January. A third party reads each applicant’s meter to determine the amount of coins granted. The coins are then disbursed from a reservoir of “pre-mined” coins that the foundation has on hand.
If dry bacteria spores of the genus Bacillus were boxers, commentators would say they punch above their weight.
When they dehydrate, the rod-shaped spores— dormant cells that help the microorganism survive tough environmental conditions and are naturally found in soil and vegetation—shrivel or curl like a leaf. Add some moisture and they straighten out again. Studies have shown that they can absorb water and expand with remarkable force. Now scientists say this phenomenon can be harnessed to use the microbes as a potential source of renewable energy or as muscles to make superstrong robots.
In research recently reported in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, a team detailed how they smeared spores on a flat piece of rubber and created a bacteria-powered generator.