This week on TreeHugger, NASA launches Google phones as cheap satellites, a GOLD balloon to clean space junk, DIY balloons that sense air pollution, a whole lot of crazy cool bike designs, and more.

VeloMini Folding Electric Bike Brings Best of Both Worlds
For urban cyclists, the Velomini is the best of two worlds — electric, and practically fits in your pocket.


DIY Electroluminescent Bike a Perfect Project for Paranoid Pedalers
For anyone who wants to make sure they're ultra-visible while riding their bike at night, this 10-step DIY project might be the ticket.

Giant GOLD Balloon to Clean Up Space Junk
The Gossamer Orbit Lowering Device, or GOLD, could finally be the solution for knocking down orbiting junk.

Minus Oil:Three Ways Technology Can Curb Our Consumption
To a great degree, technology is what got us into this oil-dependent mess in the first place; still, it can very well be an important component of moving away from oil while maintaining the same degree of global connectivity we currently experience. In three major areas, including communication, transportation and food, we discuss how technology can lead us toward a more sustainable future that doesn't include oil.


NASA Launches Google Phones Into Space as Cheap Satellites : TreeHugger
What happens when NASA geeks hangout with Google employees? Well, they duct tape their Android-based phones to a space rocket and blast it 28,000 feet into the air. Duh!

Automotive X Prize Finalists Race to Top 100 MPGe
Of the original 136 vehicles that qualified to enter the Automotive X Prize, there are nine final survivors. In this 'revolution through competition,' the vehicles aimed for the best super-fuel efficiency — 100 mpg or its equivalent — in hopes of earning the $10 million purse. Two combustion engine vehicles and seven electric vehicles reached 90 MPGe in the on-track tests. So what's next before the winner is chosen?

DIY Balloons Glow to Show Air Quality
Having such a cool air quality monitor can be as simple as a weekend DIY project.


Full-Sized Urban Bicycle Folds Flat, Nearly Disappears: The ThinBike (Interview, Slideshow)
Graham Hill, founder of, came up with ThinBike — a full-sized urban bicycle that all but disappears when brought indoors.

Your Office is In Your Pants: 6 Trends Shaping The Way We Work
Technology is getting so small that your office isn't just where you are, it's in your pants.

Lunartic Bike Has Stability and Manoeuvrability, With Cool Hubless Rear Wheel
Big wheeled bikes are very stable, due to the gyroscopic effect of the large wheel. But small wheeled bikes take up less space and are very manoeuvrable. The Lunartic is a bike design submitted for a Dyson Award that tries to combine the benefits of both.


Solar Powered Bike Bags for Energy Savvy Cyclists
Sticking solar cells on bikes for supplemental power is not exactly new, but the idea is finally finding more fashionable forms. Well, sort of. This small bag fits onto handle bars or the bike bar for gathering a charge while riding.

TreeHugger's EcoModo column appears every Tuesday on Gizmodo.