Materialab's Wind + Solar Power
Check out this Wind Amplified Rotor Platform, designed by Materialab and recently featured in Metropolis; it generates energy using small mechanical turbines strategically attached to a building. ::MetropolisThe kids at Materialab, an interdisciplinary architecture-research firm based out of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, is also currently testing out a "radical" new photovoltaic façade. (We just love it when they use the word "radical".) The shade system has pivoting lenses that track the movement of the sun across the sky, focussing its rays onto solar cells. They, in turn, convert about 30% of the light into electricity and absorb another 50% of the energy in the form of heat. Basically, the system reduces interior glare and diffuses excess light in a highly-efficient manner throughout the day.
We know it sounds like a science fiction novel, but it's neat, dammit.