Green tech finds: Recycled guitars and impromptu speakers

Cool concept cars and planes, speakers that turn ordinary objects into amplifiers, and the potential environmental cost of washing your jacket: this week’s green tech finds.

Honda’s very cool, very light electric concept vehicle: Unfortunately, “concept” often means we’ll never see one on the road. Still, Honda’s EV-STER (which rolled out last week at the Tokyo Auto Show, and is pictured above) shows the company combining electric power with light weight (through lots of body elements made from carbon) and sweet styling; maybe they’ll keep thinking this way as they work towards new production vehicles. (via Earth Techling)

A solar plane that can fly at night: Another concept, the Solar Impulse, is probably even further from replacing current aircraft. But Bertrand Piccard’s solar-powered plane (which also keeps weight off with carbon elements) demonstrates the theoretical feasibility of flying at night only on sun power. (via and @coolerplanet)

The recycled guitar: Nope, not a hand-me-down from your older brother after he broke up the band; rather, guitar maker C.F. Martin & Co. has announced an acoustic model made from “FSC-certified recycled Sitka Spruce” for its Performing Arts series. (via Earth 911 and @Bennuworld)

Turn your cup – or almost anything else – into a speaker: No, we’re not talking about the “cup-and-string” set-up you played with as a kid. Rather, Vibroy keeps amplifier materials out of its new Portable Vibration Speaker by allowing the user to attach it to any stationary object that will conduct sound. (via Treehugger and @DotheGreenThing)

The modular, “no tools required” shelter: Associate “emergency shelter” with “FEMA trailer?” There’s a much better (and greener) option now: the Liina Transitional Shelter. Completely modular and transportable, the shelter can be assembled (without tools) in six hours. (via Inhabitat)

California planning to monitor its own greenhouse gas emissions: In partnership with several major in-state research institutions and Earth Networks, the state of California plans to build a statewide network of greenhouse gas monitoring stations. (via @greeneconpost)

Is washing your jacket polluting the ocean? The two actions seem completely unrelated, but, according to Science, plastic fibers shed by garments during laundering (which you pull out of the lint filter) are showing up in ocean ecosystems, and may be harming marine life. (via Grist and @mattcourtland)

We’ve been away for a few weeks, so feel free to share your green tech finds from the past month or so in the comments.


Image credit: Honda