Like many of you, we at IV are paying keen attention to the latest news on Hurricane Sandy and thinking of our colleagues, family and friends affected by this storm. And we’ve witnessed the important role invention has played in the emergency preparedness and recovery processes, from simple sand-bagging and boarding windows, to mobile back-up generators in hospitals and the latest search-and-rescue equipment.
Storms like Sandy also create a heightened level of interest in some of the climate-related projects and inventions IV has pursued in the past. One of those projects, introduced back in 2009, focuses not on preparation or recovery from storms, but preventing them altogether. Working with Dr. Stephen Salter we invented the Salter Sink to combat hurricanes before they even make landfall. The invention would harness energy from waves to cool the surface temperature of the ocean in hurricane-prone areas. In turn, this slight temperature decrease would rob storms of the energy they need to grow into hurricanes.
Given the devastation caused by storms like Hurricane Sandy, people are understandably interested in learning more about the Salter Sink every time a hurricane approaches. Although that project returned some interesting early results, in order for hurricane suppression technology to become a reality it would require much more extensive testing and research that’s better suited for a university or government research group to pursue.
If you’re interested in learning more about our projects, you can read about them on the IV Lab blog or watch ABC’s interview with Nathan Myhrvold in 2009 about this group of climate-related inventions.