Archive for April, 2009

Meeting Minutes 7/4/09

April 10, 2009 Leave a comment

EWB Meeting Minutes 7/4/09

– Report from Middle Eastern EWB Meeting in Cyprus, Greece

  • Liad and Mark attended an international gathering for EWB chapter representatives in Cyprus, Greece. The meeting discussed new projects, sustainable building and cooperative EWB efforts over 3 days.
  • Multinational Middle-eastern projects: All must be sustainable, cooperative and feasible.

1. Greece/Macedonia/Kosovo: Model farm powered by solar power and featuring other sustainable technologies.

2. EWB Palestine: Easy-build modular homes– Cheap, quick to assemble (4 hours) prefabricated homes that are also energy efficient are currently being produced at a factory in the US. EWB Palestine would like to build a factory for these structures in Bethlehem. The site will serve as an educatonal center for sustainable living and produce modular houses for refugees.

3. EWB Israel/Palestine/Jordan: Abraham Path Initiative– The Abraham Path is a long-distance walking trail covering the traditional route of Abraham from Iraq through Iran, Syria, Jordan, Palestine (territories) and Israel. The project was conceived as a regional initiative for peace, tourism and sustainability, with rest stations scattered along the way where various EWB groups will showcase or install sustainable techniques and projects.

A joint Israel/Jordan/Palestine project was planned, in which representatives of the three groups would meet at a site on the trail within Jordan to set up a rest station using earthen building techniques, composting toilets and a sustainable energy coffee/tea stand powered by compressed waste blocks. The Technion chapter decided to take part in this project.

The first step is a meeting with the Jordanian and Palesinian representatives, in which a suitable site within the 11 km trail segment in Jordan will be selected. This meeting is planned for the FIRST WEEK OF JUNE to coincide with a visit by EWB founder Bernard. EWB technion will be responsible for writing and printing guidlines for compressed waste block production and use that will be posted at the site in multiple languages.

– New Projects/ Options for Nepal/Negev

  • Pathogen testing: We will continue to look for portable incubators while a new, “dry” genomic testing technology is examined.
  • Compressed waste blocks: For the upcoming mission to Nepal, we would like to support the spread of compressed waste blocks and improved kitchens for healthier, wood-free cooking. A workshop on preparing and using these blocks will be held for EWB members after the passover holiday. In Nepal, EWB technion would like to teach locals to use this technique, to provide them with compression machines and to support the development of local entreprenuership by either training Nepali instructors, machine builders or in supporting systems of waste collection and block production that can provide income to local peoples.
  • Improved kitchens: Promoting the building of earthen kitchen stoves with chimneys to redirect harmful fumes and support compressed waste block cooking.
  • Olive Oil byproducts: For the local area (Negev, Palestine (territories), etc.), we would like to use by-products of olive oil production to produce compressed fuel blocks. Waste from pressing stations currently acts as a major stream pollutant (high organic load, non-biologically decomposable aromatics) which is dumped illegally due to its high cost of disposal. Using this high-energy fuel for cooking would eliminate this pollutant from our water sources and provide a high-grade combustable for the fuel blocks. EWB technion would like to form a relationship with local pressing facilities (“Beit Bad”) so that we can start experimenting with this material.
  • Solar concentrators: EWB technion would like to examine solar concentrators as an alternative option for cooking and water sterilization. If heated for ten minutes, 65 deg C is enough to sterilize water for human consumption, a temperature that can be reached using solar concentrators made from cheap materials such as coke cans, etc.
  • Small-scale wind turbines: Members interested in this technology will be connected with a private partner working with this technology in the West Bank.

– Biogas Reactor Update

Still waiting on final approval to begin building.

We need to start producing reusable fiberglass triangles which assemble to serve as the dome scaffold. Does anyone have connections with a fiberglass fabrication facility?

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סיכום ישיבה 2.4.09

April 6, 2009 Leave a comment

סיכום ישיבה 2.4.09


1.כתיבת ‘פרוספקטוס’ במטרה לקבל מימון לארגון

צריכים לפרט את עלויות הארגון לשנה או שנתיים

מכתב מהטכניון שאומר שהארגון אכן חלק מהמוסד, זה יעלה את הסיכוים לקבל מימון.

2. פטוגנים ביציאת המעכל בנפאל

רוצים לבדוק אם יש פטוגנים ביציאת המעכל בשטח. השאלה היא איך לעשות כך בדרך הכי זולה ויעילה.

* בדיקת קוליפורמים – אינדיקציה טובה לפטוגנים

יהיה קשה לשמור דוגמאות ולהוביל אותם ארצה – בעיות קירור ומשלוח.
אולי יהיה יקר מידי לקנות ולביא ציוד.

* סיכמנו שחסר לנו מידע על שיטות דיגום פטוגנים. הוחלט לחקור את העינין יותר ולדון על זה בפגישה הבא.

‘Toilet Composting’

o ג’ון שאל למה לא בונים ‘Composting Toilets’ בנפאל.

o נעומי – זה לא רווחי בשבילם כי לא מקבלים גז לבישול ולא חסר להם קמפוסט (שנוצר מהטוילטים האלה)

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Meeting Minutes–3/31/09

April 6, 2009 Leave a comment

Meeting Minutes–3/31/09

1. Review of decisions from last week’s meeting: Most importantly, the group decided to go ahead with building the reactor as soon as possible at the gravel site near the Agricultural Engineering faculty.

2. What are our design options for building the reactor/dome?

Eldad presented the results of his meeting with Yehoshua the grounds superintendant:

– It is both possible and desirable to build an access port through the roof
– We are currently ready to dig the reactor pit. We have access to digging machines, though we have a max. depth of 1.2 m unless we plan the location differently. This means the reactor will be partially exposed above ground and we may need to elevate the inlet/outlet.
-We have a ready-made PVC pipe for the inlet tube and two ready-made cells for the inlet/outlet chambers.
– We still need official approval from A. Shaviv before building commences.

The members voted to use the available ready-made chambers/piping for the inlet/outlet.

3. Building the Reactor

Tanya presented an update from the construction group:

-Several options for the central chamber interior: Cement blocks, Plastic/Fiberglass, Poured cement, Cement with polymer additive to improve sealing.
-Several options for sealant: Bare cement, Polymer additive, plastering.
-Dome will require either steel girders, fiberglass or a strong frame on which to dry. The scaffolding may be aluminium or other material.
-Due to a lack of available expertise/knowledge, Tanya insists that we should enlist the help of a licensed building engineer or post-graduate student with sufficient knowledge and experience to design the roof to adequate strength specifications.

Next step: recruit engineer to design roof, price various building options.

4. Upcoming EWB Conference

Mark and Liad will attend this week’s Middle East EWB conference in Greece. They will attempt to contact the Palestine chapter of EWB for potential cooperative projects on integrated stream and watershed management.

5. Nepal Mission Goals

These will be discussed at the upcoming Thursday meeting.

6. Pyrolysis

This is a process by which solar radiation is concentrated and used to burn waste at very high temperatures (>400C) in the absence of oxygen. The anaerobic process breaks down waste, including plastics, to solid, liquid and gas components. The liquid and gas components can then be used as relatively “clean” hydrocarbon fuel sources. EWB technion is interested in developing small-scale uses for this technology to help the Beduoin communities of the south, which currently lack trash collection services and often burn their waste, producing pollution and harming human health. The chapter pyrolysis project commitee will be spearheaded by Nomi.

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