Clean Technology Making Big Technological Advances With A Small Environmental Footprint

Clean technology making big technological advances with a small environmental footprint


Arnulfo Dotson

Clean technology is increasing globally as the demand for green, environmentally conscious technology grows. This clean technology (or cleantech) is centered upon increasing productivity and efficiency while lowering overall costs used in products and services.

Within New Zealand, despite our high use of relatively clean technologies in some areas like the production of electricity using hydro, geo-thermal, and wind technology, R & D into clean technologies in general has been slower to take off. Recently, clean technology has become more high profile with worldwide attention focused on reducing our environmental footprint, and in November of 2010, the country s first purpose-built Clean Technology Centre opened in Otaki. Able to house up to 20 clean technology companies, the Centre also has the research support and input of WelTec Connect.

WelTec Connect s Centre for Smart Product views clean technology as an exciting field to be getting involved in, particularly in relation to creating products and technologies that are more sustainable. As Paul Mather, the Director of Technology Development at the Centre for Smart Products, says, While some of these technologies are still in the concept and early development stage like utilising marine technology to harness undersea and wave energy, other blue technologies which use water in a variety of ways (water jetting and in emulsified fuels) are in development, testing or production phases.

As well as having a hot desk at the Clean Technology Centre in Otaki, WelTec Connect are participating on a number of projects that are within the clean technology development area including:


– Ultra high pressure (UHP) water jetting technology development with AquaMax Devco developing a UHP water jetting system that uses less water, and allows recycling of up to 96% of the water used plus capture the waste created to recycle as well. This technology has a huge range of applications including being used for infrastructure maintenance such as cleaning of roads, bridges and buildings, and removing paint from aircraft.

– Blended fuel development and testing to reduce emissions, plus research into adding waste oil to fuels to reduce waste, and being able to use alternative fuels without having to modify or replace anything on the vehicle. The Centre for Smart Products is also looking at the development of dual fuels and electric car technology.

– Working with Iain Jerrett s electric motorcycle, by developing the casing casing a cell management system for use in other machines. The electrically powered engine can basically be applied to any mechanism requiring power to operate.

Weltec Connect is also working in other areas to help lower environmental impact such as:

– Working with the Hutt City Council on a project called Silver Lining which looks at reducing waste and reusing waste through reprocessing.

– A project called Lean Manufacturing in partnership with the Centre for Smart Business aimed at reducing the internal waste of a company.

In order to encourage R & D of clean technology, a number of schemes have been put into place. For example the TTV (Technology Transfer Voucher) enables companies like Weltec to work with underfunded businesses to develop designs, concepts and projects. For more information about funding please contact Paul Mather at the Centre for Smart Products.

Toby Spears has for awhile been writing articles on clean technology development. He is a highly known writer who many regard highly.

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