Monday, 22 October 2012

Maxwell Air Force Base shows off tech at its first Home Energy Expo

Maxwell Air Force Base on Friday held its first Home Energy Expo, showcasing products such as electric and hybrid cars, room occupancy sensors and a solar oven that was baking a pie.

David Macon, who organized the expo for Maxwell, said the inaugural event was specifically for military families, but added that he hoped for expanded events in future years.

?Hopefully, in the future (we can) open it up so we can be part of energy expos off base,? Macon said.

The goal is to help people learn the ways they can save money on utility and other energy bills, he said.

Among the cars on display at the expo was an orange Tesla Roadster, a sporty electric car that reportedly is capable of going from 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds. Makers of the roadster said that it can go 245 miles on a single charge.

The room-occupancy sensors cause lights to turn on when someone enters a room and turn off when a person leaves a room.

Solar-energy vendor Craig McManus described how a solar water heater takes in cold water, heats it to 160 to 180 degrees Fahrenheit, then adds more cold water to regulate the temperature.

Nearby, what looked like an open, silver box reflected the sunlight. Inside, a pie was baking at 300 F.

October typically is considered Energy Awareness Month, but the Air Force decided that wasn?t strong enough, Macon said.

?The Air Force said, ?Hey, let?s take it a step further,? and this is now Energy Action Month,? he said.

Master Sgt. Stacy Powell tried out a stationary bicycle that was powering two light bulbs. The florescent bulb was glowing brightly while the incandescent bulb dimly flickered.

Powell said a bicycle that could provide electrical power would be a useful thing to have around.

?If you had that in your house, you could put it in your workout room,? Powell said.

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