Solar Heating And Cooling For A Sustainable Energy

The temperature regulation of skyscrapers is a real problem for the environment, as we have said before. Large glass buildings absorb heat from exposure to the sun to a greater extent, which naturally raises the temperature and complicates cooling work.

solar cooling

The future of construction in large metropolitan areas for the research and development of new sustainable energy production systems. In this direction, a team of engineers has designed a system that could help cool buildings with a zero cost of electricity.

This would be possible thanks to radiative cooling, a passive cooling strategy that reduces energy consumption to the limit. Its most practical application is to store the heat radiated by the buildings and contribute to the reduction of the energy expenditure required by the air conditioners.

Power Consumption

This project, the result of the collaboration between King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has developed a structure covered with a thin polymer/aluminium film. This material allows the system to absorb heat from the air and retain it inside the case, thus transmitting the cooling energy.

It is a technology capable of operating even at night in optimal atmospheric conditions, however, it is essential to achieve an efficient energy reserve during the day when the cooling demand reaches its highest peak.

Reduce The Temperature During The Day by 6 Degrees

The results of the first tests, published in the scientific journal Nature Sustainability, showed that the device was able to reduce the temperature of a small, closed space during the day up to 6 degrees. At night, the figure rose to 11 degrees.

To achieve the desired objective it would be necessary to install numerous devices on the roof of a building. Then, the aluminium cover would fulfil its function by reflecting sunlight to avoid directly impacting the roof and the heat is introduced.

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Technology Used Food Made From The Thin Air

A company is producing flour using only air and water. It is a high protein flour that could be used as a substitute for any other type of flour or protein powder.

food from thin air

It seems science fiction but a company claims to have succeeded. Solar Foods, a Finnish company, has managed to create food from the air. The product they get is a protein powder and to produce it they only use CO2, water and electricity. The powder contains 50% protein, 5-10% fat, 20-25% carbohydrates and tastes similar to wheat flour, according to the FEM

The large amount of CO2 in our atmosphere is undoubtedly one of the greatest environmental problems on Earth. It would be amazing to be able to get rid of greenhouse gases and, at the same time, create food.

How Do They Do That?

Solar Foods uses a process that captures the carbon present in the air, more specifically in CO2. Once you have separated it, combine it with water, nutrients and vitamins, all with solar energy, which recreates a natural fermentation process. Solar Foods is using Finland’s natural air, one of the purest that exists.

Flour production is not contingent on soil, weather or rain, so it could be manufactured in countries where agriculture is not possible or even used as food for astronauts. In fact, Solar Foods is already working with the European Space Agency to develop a system that can be used outside our planet.

This protein produced from the air can be a solution for companies that manufacture vegan “meat”, reducing its environmental impact by using a product that does not need to be cultivated.

It will begin to include products such as protein shakes and yoghurts
Solar Food pleanea request a “Novel food” license that must be requested for new foods that have not been used for human consumption.

The protein can acquire different textures through 3D printing (it can be grouped as fibres to mimic the texture of meat or bread) or it can be used simply as a condiment, as another ingredient.

Solar Foods is confident of launching the product globally in 2021 when it estimates to produce about 2 million meals a year at a price of 5 euros per kilo.

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Gene Therapy To Fight Rare Diseases

More than half of the rare disease cases manifest themselves in children under two years of age, and more than 90% of affected patients do not have specific treatments. But can a solution be found to deal with this type of ailments? Of course, and the answer is in gene therapy.

Gene Therapy

What Is Gene Therapy?

This therapy is a technique that uses genes to treat and prevent diseases, having significant potential for those children who suffer from a rare pathology.

How is this treatment carried out? Doctors insert a gene into the patient’s cells instead of using medications.

The goal of this treatment is to replace and deactivate the mutated gene that causes the condition with the modified gene.

Last Friday Krystof Bankiewicz, neurologist and world leader in gene therapy, was present at the conference held last Friday in the Telephone District, where he explained the great importance of this therapy to combat rare diseases.

Krystof Bankiewicz pointed out that gene therapy is the most accurate way to treat neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s. In addition, it can be of great help to treat rare diseases such as AADC or also known as childhood Parkinson.

Javier García, one of the founding partners of the Columbus Foundation, explained that the purpose of the foundation is to make this therapy accessible and provide all possible assistance to families.

Children’s Parkinson or AADC

The AADC (aromatic amino acid deficiency decarboxylase) is a genetically inherited neurological disorder that affects the ability of the brain to secrete neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin.

genetherapy research

Due to the absence of these substances, the brain is “disconnected” from the body and therefore can not do simple tasks such as moving, picking up objects or talking.

It is an ultra-rare disease because there are only 130 cases in the world.

The use of gene therapy for this neurological problem has shown incredible results, the results of the treatment being noticeable at six months, and thus improving the daily life of those children suffering from this deficiency.

There are currently more than eight children receiving this treatment in Europe, and the proposed goal for 2020 is to treat three children each month.

Marta’s trip

The first known case in Spain of this disease was that of Iran. A four-year-old girl, and was the first Spanish patient to perform this treatment, and six months later she could keep her head up, pick up objects and her evolution is positive.

Currently, there is the case of Marta, a four-year-old girl who suffers from Niemann Pick C disease, a neurodegenerative disorder that can be treated thanks to gene therapy.

Marta’s case reached the Digital Transformation Department of Telefónica. The team told the story to the entire company, which finally embarked on this initiative called Marta’s trip to improve Marta’s life and so many other children fighting against this type of illness.

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