Belgium
Koen Mortelmans
Koen Mortelmans I am a Belgium-based freelance journalist, mainly writing about energy , environment , construction and science.
How can smart cities finance their transformation?
How can smart cities finance their transformation? Local governments in Europe are notoriously risk averse, city council officials and industry leaders won’t hesitate to tell you.
Science-based civic projects
Science-based civic projects “Are we all on the same page? Singing from the same hymn sheet?” For anyone working with groups of people in policy areas, the answer is nearly always “yes”.
“Compacting” electricity lines
“Compacting” electricity lines Often in the countryside, but also near cities, we come across electric power lines with huge pylons, real eye-sores on the landscape.
Financing the next generation of “deep-tech” research innovators
Financing the next generation of “deep-tech” research innovators Remember the cassette Walkman? With streaming services, even MP3 players like the iPod look distinctly  passé . Car Sat-Navs used to drop jaws in amazement, but now driverless cars and flying drone taxis are on the horizon.
How supergrids can support the integration of renewable energy
How supergrids can support the integration of renewable energy In the past, most electricity grids were mainly based on centrally produced power, in relatively few plants, within national borders.
The fight on plastics heats up in the EU
The fight on plastics heats up in the EU A wind of change is blowing across Europe, trying to sweep away all the plastic bags that are littering our countries. January 2018 has been a busy month in this sense.
Households poised to become energy dealers
Households poised to become energy dealers Households and small businesses using independent power systems, or microgrids, still find it hard to cope without their national electricity grids.
Cities: how smart strategies can turn into effective action plans
Cities: how smart strategies can turn into effective action plans When Justin Bieber made his way to Stockholm in September 2016, city officials hardly expected the tween heartthrob to pave the way for sustainable urban policy .
Recycling CO2… It’s a work of art!
Recycling CO2… It’s a work of art! A book of learning experiences, in which every chapter is explained through a piece of art. The theme: the transformation of CO 2 into something useful, using man-made diamonds.
The race toward exascale supercomputing targets 2020
The race toward exascale supercomputing targets 2020 Exascale is an artificial milestone figure represented by the number one followed by eighteen zeros. Exascale computers will be able to perform a quintillion calculations per second, and they are expected to consume only 20 MW of power.
The semiotics of supercomputers
The semiotics of supercomputers Exascale supercomputing refers to super fast computers to be implemented between 2018 and 2020 to analyse massive volumes of data. The downside: they consume vast amounts of energy.
Organic waste and insects: animal feed of the future?
Organic waste and insects: animal feed of the future? More than the 70 percent of the protein sources required by animals bred in the European Union are imported from non-EU countries . Soybean dominates the protein supply for animal feed .
Could ‘superfoods’ stop disease?
Could ‘superfoods’ stop disease? The importance of healthy eating for our well-being is scientifically proven and having a varied diet goes without saying.
Creating Europe’s new backbone for efficient power distribution
Creating Europe’s new backbone for efficient power distribution Over the last few decades the energy landscape has been changing drastically in Europe. An increasing amount of electricity is now generated from renewable sources, such as solar and wind energy.
Powering the future: could Europe go dark?
Powering the future: could Europe go dark? February’s blackout in Brussels left neighbourhoods in darkness, streets lit only by headlights and torches. You may be left thinking it was the symptom of a sick system.
Assessing wind resources in our cities
Assessing wind resources in our cities The 43-story Strata tower in London was one of the first buildings in the world to incorporate wind turbines into its structure. It has three small turbines – each with a rated capacity of 19 kilowatt hours – built into its roof.
Biotechnology: navigating a minefield
Biotechnology: navigating a minefield In our fast-moving world, biotech is at the forefront of developments – but, by its very nature, it can provoke ethical and moral concerns .
Do microbes control our mood?
Do microbes control our mood? If aliens were to examine a human, they would think we were just slavish organisms designed to feed microbes and carry them around. Our bodies contain ten times more bacteria than cells , and there are an estimated 3.
Gauging public opinion on small wind turbines
Gauging public opinion on small wind turbines Recent studies suggest that around 70 to 80 percent of people in Europe support wind farms, although there are still concerns around noise and aesthetics.
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