Date Announced: 12 Jan 2023
One year on from COP26, and, once again, there have been significant sea changes that have sent waves throughout the world. Long gone are the crippling concerns associated with COVID-19 and social distancing, excluding the current ‘zero-COVID’ policy that is currently underway in China, of course. Now, we're faced with a cost-of-living crisis, rising energy bills and the Russia-Ukraine war, which, inevitably, made an impact on COP26's pledges. Here, Knight Optical runs through a handful of highlights from COP27 and looks at the forward-thinking leaders and sectors that are employing technologies to help the planet.
From the rainy skies of Glasgow to the sun-drenched blues of Sharm El Sheik, COP27 gathered world leaders from far and wide to discuss a course of action for the globe’s shared environmental goals. Taking place from 6 to 20th November, this year’s summit published its final document more than 36 hours over the Friday-night deadline, meaning there are many takeaways from this year’s event.
Let’s start looking at the resource that one country is utilising to help make headway with the objectives of the United Nations Climate Change Conference.
In a recent move to further embrace renewable energy efficient technologies, France has approved legislation that requires over 80-space car parks to be covered with solar panels. In what some are calling an “urban renewable revolution1”, this ingenuity plays a part in a wider scheme that will introduce solar-powered technology to other derelict and vacant spaces in the country, harnessing energy efficiently in locations that would otherwise be underutilised.
As a supplier of solar power components for solar photovoltaic (PV) panels, specifically Fresnel Lenses, Knight Optical welcomes this innovative, eco effort.
With two options available, Custom-Made and Stock Fresnel Lenses, we have the right solar power components for all types of projects – whether you’re looking for optics with short lead times or project-specific Lenses for mass production.
What’s more, with customisable opportunities, you can pick the substrate that’s best suited to your PV application, such as PMMA Acrylic and Borosilicate.
Another result of this year’s conference was the pledges from Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, the UK, Colombia, and the US, to join an alliance to generate more offshore wind energy. All nine countries signed up to the Global Offshore Wind Alliance (GOWA), which aims to increase wind power applications to tackle the climate crisis2.
Talking to The Independent, Ben Backwell, the CEO of the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), said: "The GWEC estimates that Government targets for offshore wind would take installed capacity to 370GW – close to the 380GW target – by the end of 2030. But we are going to have to all give our best efforts and work together if we are going to turn these targets into reality3."
With so many countries coming together to ‘ramp up offshore energy’, Knight Optical expects a further increase in popularity for its Window and Lenses that are commonly used for turbine applications.
At Knight Optical, our renewable technology optics portfolio extends to wind turbine components & applications, particularly those that use light detection and ranging (LiDAR). It’s here that many of our optical components are used, such as protective optical windows like BK7 Windows and Achromatic Doublet Lenses, for example.
Momentarily moving away from this year’s conference, the inauguration of COP27 also encouraged other industries, such as the construction sector, to come together to discuss environmental concerns that impact their specific fields. For example, to coincide with the event, Actuate UK – an engineering services alliance – called for the UK Government to “better coordinate with the sector” to make the nation’s buildings more energy efficient.
In H&V News, Paul Reeve, Deputy Chair of Actuate UK’s Net Zero Group, explained that to deliver low-carbon buildings, the sector must adopt a fabric-first approach, where the priority would be more energy-efficient building materials4.
This energy efficiency is typically measured via infrared cameras in what’s called building thermography. By using these infrared cameras, a building’s energy loss can be quickly and easily identified and remedied via appropriate insulation methods. Of course, the resolution of these cameras must be of the highest quality if effective analysis is to be achieved. That’s where premium-quality optical components come into play.
From stock to custom-made optics, here at Knight Optical, we provide a wide range of options for building thermography applications, such as Windows and Domes, in customisable substrate options like Germanium (Ge).
For the first time ever, robots were present at this year’s conference! Employed to enhance the safety and security of attendees of COP27, these robots specialised in “nursing, sterilisation, analysis sample transfers and other patient services” throughout the course of COP27. The initiative is part of the Ministry of Health and Population’s goal of “making Sharm El Sheikh’s healthcare facilities and services more eco friendly” and “green5”.
It's not just during the conference that robots have been turning heads, either!
According to UN scientists, “food production systems produce more than a third of global greenhouse gas emissions6”. As a result, autonomous farming, such as self-driving tractors, drones, and seed-sowing robots, are proving popular to effectively produce more crops in a more sustainable manner7.
According to The World Economic Forum, many are working towards replacing “chemical insecticides” and “fossil-based pesticides” with “biological components”. This is being tackled by using “plant-based solutions” and “fermented proteins and microorganisms”.
What’s more, our highlighted industry above, the construction sector, is also using biotech to be more eco friendly by using “microorganisms to produce bio-cement”.
Here at Knight Optical, we have extensive experience in both the robotic and biotech industries, having supplied ultra-high-precision optical components for advanced instrumentation and systems and autonomous devices.
We look forward to welcoming the influx of new innovations that stem from COP27 pledges and talking points. With a wide-ranging list of customers in these fields already on our books, we’re poised to work and innovate with you on the next generation of energy efficient technologies that help make the planet both greener and cleaner.
Discerning customers rely on Knight Optical not only for the premium quality of our output and in-house state-of-the-art Metrology Laboratory and QA Department's capabilities but because – as well as a range of Stock Optics (available for next-day dispatch) – we also offer our optics as Custom-Made Components.
With over three decades' experience under our belt and a host of long-standing world-renowned customers on our books, we are proud to have worked on some of the most ground-breaking innovations.
If you are looking for premium-quality, bespoke optical components, please do not hesitate to get in touch with a member of the Technical Sales Team here.
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