OLEDs: Photovoltaic Lights?

We’re currently experiencing the rise of the compact fluorescent…and soon after will come LED lamps. But what comes after LEDs? The Organic LED of course. OLEDs are already used as cell phone and MP3 displays and futurists have them pegged in everything from wearable displays to photovoltaic windows. But the technology is a long way off, which is why we’re happy to announce that the University of Bath is leading a $1.7 million research effort to lay the groundwork for the OLED revolution.

OLEDs are so versatile because they are both thin and flexible. And they’re ecogeeky because they’re extremely efficient and can be reversed.

"What’s that?" you say? What I mean is that OLEDs, which generally use electricity to create light, can be reversed to use light to create electricity, basically making them a photovoltaic cell.

OLEDs still require a lot of research before they will be a viable, economical lighting technology. But it’d be nice if my solar powered shirt could display RSS feeds on my arm. And maybe OLEDs are going to get us there.

Via Physorg.com

BMW MINI Doubling it’s Mileage to 60 MPG

BMW MINIs are surprisingly inefficient. You’d think that such a small car would have some impressive stats, but city / highway ratings for Mini Models top out at 23 / 31. BMW is working on the problem, however. The MINI Cooper D will be receiving the same treatment as a few other BMW models: regenerative braking systems and Auto Start-Stop functionality that will as much as double mileage of the vehicle.

BMW’s regenerative braking system uses an Intelligent Alternator Control (IAC), which improves upon traditional alternators "by only engaging when required to charge the battery", and collecting energy when the car is coasting or slowing down.

Other technologies used are an Auto Start-Stop Function and a Switch Point Display. The former turns the engine off when at a stop, and restarts automatically when the clutch is used, while the latter lets the driver know which is the most efficient gear after analyzing the "speed, road situation and accelerator pedal position".

With their previous and current ventures into regenerative braking, BMW seems to be going not for an eco-stance, but for their mainstay of a premium driving experience. It’s not as awesome as an all-electric MINI, but it seems like a pretty good deal for BMW owners as well as the rest of the world.

Via: Green Car Congress.

Central Freight Lines, Inc. Line Haul Division Wins TMTA Truck Safety Contest.

Dallas, TX – (Market Wire) – May 15, 2007. Central Freight Lines, Inc.
is a leading LTL carrier and one of the largest intrastate carriers in
Texas. With 65 terminals, a great environment for Company and Owner
Operator Drivers, and over 80 years of experience in the business,
Central Freight sets its goals high and achieves them everyday.

The Texas Motor Transportation Association (TMTA) recently announced
that Central Freight is the winner of the Truck Safety Contest – Line
Haul, in the Intercity – Over 20 Million Miles Class. TMTA bases this
prestigious award on performance in the following categories: Safety
Program Organization; Employee Driver/Independent Contractor Selection
Procedure; Training; Supervision; Accident Investigation; Inspection
& Maintenance of Equipment; and Outside Activities & General
Highway Safety.

VP of Line Haul at Central, Phil Nelms, said, “We are deeply
honored to be recognized for our safety practices. It is an indication
to our entire team that our efforts to improve our internal processes
are paying off, as well as our continued emphasis of ‘safety first’.”

“Our Line Haul drivers have the experience and capabilities to
provide safe and first class service every day,” Tom Briggs added, VP
of Operations