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Sunday, August 25, 2013

What is Eco-friendly Technology?

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The word efficient technology in the present context means such a technology which derives maximum through the utilization of minimum resource with negligible quantity of wastage. Old machines often consume lots of fuels and generate lots of wastes without liberation of sufficient energy. Hence, old machines can not be said as efficient. Neither the technology on which our old machines are based can be called efficient. A technology which produces lots of wastes, high pitch of sounds, consumes lots of resources and adds heavily to the pollution load of the environment can neither be efficient nor environment friendly. We cannot afford to waste our resource by making use of old and inefficient technology. Rather, it is the need of the hour to go for efficient technology which is also called as Eco- friendly technology.
What is Eco-friendly Technology?
An eco-friendly technology is the technology that can be employed for the developmental works without causing any harm to any part of the natural environment. Rather such a technology should support the balance of environment along with doing the needful.
The selection of an appropriate technology for a particular purpose depends on a number of factors like –low  cost of technology, it should have been selected keeping in view the demand of electricity on local level, it is supported by government, and it should be based on locally available resources.
Some available Eco-friendly Technologies
In modern times the world is using many significant eco- friendly technologies. Some of these technologies are – wind power, small hydro-power, biomass power, energy from waste, solar energy technologies, and hybrid or stand alone system.
Wind Power: India has a Wind Energy Potential of 45,000 MW. The capital cost of a single wind power plant ranges from Rs. 4.0 to 4.5 Crore/MW and the cost of power generation through wind power plant is expected to decline in the cost of a power plant as- Improvements in Technology, Increase in the size of turbine & optimal planning and site selection. 80% of the power generated through wind systems is of captive in nature.
Small Hydro- Power: the total installed capacity of small hydro-power is 63 MW. However there is a drastic increase to 226 MW within a period of only ten years. These small hydro-power stations are located in hilly areas and canal drops. Most of these plants are connected to grid. Some of the small hydro-plants in India are run by Non-Government Organizations or by local communities.
Biomass Power: primary power generation technologies applied in the generation of Biomass Power are – gasification, co-generation and Direct Combustion. So far, about a total of 34 units aggregating to up to 210 MW capacity co-generation plants have been commissioned whereas 26 units aggregating to 237 MW capacity is under implementation. Of the total energy supplied world wide the biomass power generation is about 14% out of this, 38% is consumed in developing countries comprising rural and traditional sectors. Major applications of biomass power are – direct or indirect heating, pumping water for irrigation, power generation, rural electrification and industrial uses.
Energy from Wastes: the basic concept behind generating energy from wastes is the reduction of wastes. The technologies so far available for the recovery of energy from wastes, are- Anaerobic Digestion, Bio-methanation, landfill gas recovery, incineration and intensification or pelletisation. Other eco-friendly technologies for deriving energy from wastes are pyrolysis, gasification, alcohol fermentation, slurry carb process and plasma.
Solar Energy Technologies: solar Water Heating, Solar Cookers, Solar Air Heating, Solar thermal heating, Solar thermal building design are some important non-grid solar thermal technologies applied in India and other countries.
Hybrid and Stand-alone System: combination of two different energy technologies is called as Hybrid System. Under this scheme solar photovoltaic system and wind electric generators can be combined to produce energy. During cloudy days wind electric generation is useful for optimum supply whereas during low wind conditions solar photovoltaic system can be used effectively. Wind water pumps, wind battery chargers and chemical storage comprise stand-alone Wind technologies.
Rural Energy Technologies: Some technologies are now being used mostly in rural areas. These technologies if developed and used properly, can change faces of Indian villages.
Biogas: biogas generation is the most important, clean and eco-friendly technology for rural areas. The biogas plant installation potential of Indiais 12 million plants out of which 3.1 million plants have so far been installed different parts of the country. Two types of Biogas plants are most commonly used in the country and they are fixed drum and floating drum types. Equipment like stoves, burners, lamps etc. are available indigenously.
Improved Chulhas or the Energy Efficient Wood Stoves: wood-stoves are scientifically designed wood burning devices designed for optimal regulation of heat flow as well as better fuel utilization. These wood stoves, conserve fuel wood, reduce air pollution, help in checking tree fellings, reduce health hazards, save cooking time, provide employment opportunities to rural poor and upgrade the environment.
Key Words: technology, ecofriendly, photovoltaic, biogas

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