Power from the Waves

As we continue to grow in population and continue to use more than is necessary, resources will eventually run out. Engineers and scientists are constantly looking for other methods of creating energy. Instead of continuing to use resources that contaminate our environment, there are ways of harnessing the very forces that are part of our environment. Wind and solar power are very popular forms of renewable energy today. In addition, engineers and scientists have even begun using the power of the ocean, using the very waves themselves to create the energy needed in today’s society. Several methods have been developed to capture wave energy. One of the concepts that have been presented is very similar to swimming pool wave machine like the one used in Valleyfair, here in Minnesota.

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Designing for the Enivornment

Sustainability is an issue that has been brought to our attention a lot in recent years. When thinking about the topic it’s easier to break it down into components. The first part is more concerned with the preservation of the natural environment while the other focuses on the energy that is consumed and wasted. Energy is consumed in several ways, yet cost is most noticeable when it pertains to our homes and the buildings we use. One concept that has taken a step in the progression of sustainability is the idea of designing with the landscape so as to protect the environment while lowering our energy use and costs. 

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Heritage 2012 Conference Highlights

Having just returned from the Heritage 2012 Conference in Porto, Portugal, here are some of the highlights from the trip... (read more)

  • Conference had a great range of topics, with sessions on heritage and governance, heritage and society, heritage and environment, heritage and economics, heritage and culture, and heritage and education. 
  • The special session on preservation of historic buildings was particularly interesting, with new topics such as millimeter wave technology for disinfecting historic structures and new methods of grout injection.
  • The conference organized a number of social events following the sessions, including tours of the city, traditional celebrations for St. John's, and boat tours of the river.
  • Made connections with many people working on research on sustainability and heritage, including professors and practitioners from Spain, Australia, Canada, and the UK. 
  • Our presentation was well received and sparked interesting conversations about short-term and long-term options for sustainability in heritage buildings. 

More information to come, or you can contact me - shengyin.xu@mnhs.org.

Masters Degrees To Build A Sustainable Future



Early Summer Events


May is National Bike Month


Why Volunteer?

More for the Mission Kick-Off

Thanks to everyone who attended the More for the Mission Reception yesterday. It was great sharing our project with you and talking to people who are excited to get involved. 

More for the Mission reception setup.

More for the Mission Event Today

Today will mark the start of the More for the Mission campaign, where we extend our project from building and infrastructure changes into engagement of staff, visitors, and members.  Our campaign will promote the idea that our sustainability efforts saves money that can go towards achieving our institutional mission.  Today's event for MHS staff will start at the 2pm Staff Forum, where a short presentation will introduce the project.  At 3pm, a reception outside the 3M Auditorium will provide more information, as well as some treats and a surprise!  MHS Green Team members will be at the reception to continue the conversations on sustainability and the More for the Mission campaign. 

Hope to see all MHS staff there today!

Earth Day, Looking Back to Move Forward

The first Earth Day in the U.S. was April 22, 1970. Founded by the U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Gaylord Nelson, the day was inspired by the student anti-war movement. With a national coordinator and 85 staff members, Nelson was able to create a moment where 20 million Americans “took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-to-coast rallies” (Earth Day Network). As the day took hold in the U.S., in 1990, Earth Day went global, mobilizing 200 million people around the world in 141 countries and “lifting environmental issues onto [the] world stage” (Earth Day Network).