Chicago Wants To Install Superconducting Cable To End Power Outages

With the threat of terrorism and extreme weather perennially perched on the horizon, Chicago's getting creative with its infrastructure upgrades. The city's primary power company, Commercial Edison, is planning to install superconducting cables to prevent outages in the city center. Why doesn't every city do this? » 7/16/14 6:00pm 7/16/14 6:00pm

This Compact Device Keeps Small Electronics Running on Emergency Power

A UPS—or uninterruptible power supply—beneath your desk can be a lifesaver if your building loses electricity while you're working. However, most people don't own one because a UPS is typically designed for power-hungry desktop computers and end up being heavy and expensive—but not APC's new tiny and cheap Back-UPS… » 7/10/14 6:00pm 7/10/14 6:00pm

A Candle-Powered Speaker Keeps Playing Even When the Power's Out

Using a scientific phenomenon known as the Peltier-Seebeck or thermoelectric effect, where a voltage is produced via a device with contrasting temperatures, this Bluetooth speaker called the Pelty can run on nothing but burning candles. So the next time you lose power during a brownout, you'll have both light and… » 6/24/14 6:00pm 6/24/14 6:00pm

A Stylish Power Strip You Won't Want To Hide Under a Table

When was the last time you bought a power strip based on looks? Never, because they all focus on functionality at the cost of being an eyesore. Thankfully, David Okum has applied his wonderful design sensibilities to yet another mundane household product, with a power strip called the Oon that you'll never want to… » 6/11/14 1:20pm 6/11/14 1:20pm

Recharging This Backup Battery Takes As Little As 15 Minutes

A backup battery can be a lifesaver if your phone is on the brink of dying—but only if it isn't dead as well. External power packs can usually take hours to charge depending on their capacity, but UNU claims its new Ultrapak GO and TOUR batteries can be charged enough to top off a smartphone in just fifteen minutes. » 6/10/14 4:20pm 6/10/14 4:20pm

Flexible Battery Straps Could Double a Smartwatch's Runtime

At Computex 2014, the folks over at Engadget stumbled across a clever solution to the battery life woes that have plagued smartwatches for years now. A company called ProLogium has developed a flexible lithium ceramic battery that can be shaped and worn like a watchband, adding an extra 500 mAh of power which means… » 6/04/14 9:07am 6/04/14 9:07am

How Obama's Power Plant Regulations Will Transform Our Electric Grid

President Obama and the EPA have just taken their biggest and boldest step ever to fight climate change. The Clean Power Plan, unveiled by the EPA today, is far more important than the Keystone XL pipeline—if also far less sexy to slap on a poster. But these carbon-cutting regulations have the potential to transform… » 6/02/14 3:12pm 6/02/14 3:12pm

This Tower Of Power Gives You 40 USB Ports For Charging Everything

It started off as a more elegant (and faster) alternative to parallel and SCSI computer ports, but now that USB can even be used to charge everything from phones to cameras, there never seem to be enough of them. It's, admittedly, a first world problem, but one that's now thankfully solved with this plug-in tower that… » 5/19/14 10:09am 5/19/14 10:09am

Truck transported on a ropeway going up a 5,400-foot mountain

Linthal 2015 is one of the most fascinating power projects going on in the world right now. When finished, this 2.35-billion-dollar pumped storage system will be able to generate as much power as a nuclear power plant—1,480 MW. The only problem is that there are no roads connecting the construction sites, so they have… » 5/15/14 7:29pm 5/15/14 7:29pm