Street Legal Production Electric Motorcycle

According to Wired, Zero Motocycles is getting read to release their street legal, all electric  Zero S motorcycle.  The bike weighs 225 pounds and has a 31 horsepower electric engine. The bike lists for just under $10,000 and is good for a federal 10% tax credit.

A Nuclear Power comeback

Some good news from USA Today, utilities are starting the process to build twentysix new Nuclear Power plants here in the United States.

A recent Gallup Poll shows a record 59% of Americans favor nuclear energy.

Dr. Pournelle nailed the truth of Nuclear Engergy:

I have to say it again: cheap energy will cause a boom. The only cheap energy I know of is nuclear. Three Hundred Billion bucks in nuclear power will do wonders for the economy. We build 100 1000 MegaWatt nuclear power plants — they will cost no more than 2 billion each and my guess is that the average cost will be closer to 1 billion each (that is the first one costs about 20 billion and the 100th costs about 800 million). The rest of the money goes to prizes and X projects to convert electricity into mobility.

Expanded Nuclear Power is the only practical way to supply the level of electrical power needed to support wide spread use of electric and plug in hybrid electric cars.

Also posted at the Urbin Report.

Double hit of good news on the alternate fuel front.

First United Environment and Energy LLC has announced they have developed a method to produce biofuel from algae oil that is 40% cheaper than other methods currently used.

They claim that algae is at least twice as efficient as soy for producing biofuel. I want to know how it compares to switch grass.  A pilot program is in place with a production capacity of nearly 1 million gallons of algae biodiesel per year.  Their estimates are that they could produce  50 million gallons of algae biodiesel annually.

The other source of alternate fuel is coal, which the US has in abundance. Wired isn’t happy with this, but I am.  Internal Combustion engines are too efficient to go away anytime soon and there isn’t a “clean energy” source available in the quantities needed to make widespread use of electric vehicles practical.

Biofuel from Coffee grounds

Amazing stuff coffee. In addtion to it’s other amazing properties, including being good for the roses, the grounds can be used to produce biofuel.

The estimates are the coffee ground biodiesel industry could generate as much as $8,000,000 in profits annually using waste from Starbucks stores here in the United States  alone.  Ok, probably less given falling crude oil prices, but I’m still a big fan of any domestic fuel souces. 

To add to the overall awesomeness of coffee, at the end of the biodiesel extraction and conversion process, the leftover grounds can be turned into fuel pellets for wood stoves and boilers.

Not only does coffee keep you moving, it can keep your car moving and heats your home!

Wind Power tech

The MIT Tech Journal has the story of a new wind turbine design that could generate electricity at half the cost of conventional turbines.

The Wilbraham, MA based company is still in the VC funding development phase.