Trends and innovations
    With global emissions rising at an alarming rate, cities and companies are transitioning towards cleaner resources, fuels, energy, and technologies. These innovations enable processes, products, and services that reduce negative environmental impacts. For cleaner operations, optimising energy usage wherever possible, from large-scale applications to an individual level. For example, home automation empowers consumers to monitor and control electricity consumption and reduce their carbon footprint.
    Switching to renewable energy also reduces the burden on fossil-based and polluting energy sources like coal and petroleum significantly, making it the first among cleantech trends. In addition, the Internet of Things (IoT) facilitates environmental conservation activities by embedding sensors in the forest and cities, either on trees or underground, to alert for unusual signs like landslides and forest fires. Cleantech is enabling breakthroughs across industries like mobility, construction, and manufacturing by replacing energy-intensive processes and products, thus lowering their carbon footprints.

Impact of the Cleantech Trends
    As governments and independent organisations support monitoring industrial carbon emissions, working towards sustainable modifications of their business processes. The most prevalent trend in cleantech is renewable energy integration. Although renewable energy sources have been in use for a while, innovations in the field are enabling the mass production of clean energy with minimum wastage and expenses.
    Low-carbon construction and alternative mobility solutions are gaining popularity and tackling emissions in their respective industries. These include using renewable fuels and low-carbon construction materials as well as vehicles that run on electricity or hydrogen. Additionally, carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS), energy consumption management, and green materials are other major trends that can be incorporated independently or in conjunction with applications in broader sectors like sustainable automation.

Renewable Energy
    At the present rates of fossil fuel depletion, there is a pressing need for alternative sources of energy that will last longer, without causing additional damage to the environment. Renewable energy sources like solar, wind, geothermal, and wave energy are the most popular alternatives. Various industries employ renewable fuels to make their operations cleaner and more sustainable. Moreover, driving sustainable innovations using renewable energy to optimise large-scale high carbon operations.
    Utilising geothermal energy to control the temperature inside large indoor spaces. QHeat deep wells, at almost 2-3 kilometers deep, are much deeper than traditional ones. Since temperatures at this level are much higher, they are able to produce a lot more energy. These wells are also used for energy storage by recharging the bedrock during seasons with higher energy availability, like summer. This promotes an efficient circular energy economy with minimum emissions for real estate owners.

Low Carbon Construction
    The construction industry is notorious for releasing harmful pollutants into the environment as well as for using highly wasteful materials in their processes. However, the construction sector is transitioning to more sustainable and circular practices. Low carbon construction caters to making the building process less harmful and more in-sync with the living nature by introducing elements such as plant walls or exteriors which facilitate cooling. Also incorporating cleaner materials in homes and public spaces to limit energy consumption without compromising on key quality parameters. In addition, developing alternatives like hempbased concrete, bamboo flooring, and green insulation to lower their dependence on polluting materials.
    Advancing smart window technology. The compact and lightweight Glazing Shield incorporates a non-intrusive and easy to retrofit system. Moreover, it offers a built-in control unit and photovoltaic module to convert absorbed light into electrical energy. This way, INOVUES reduces energy consumption for heating and cooling during peak energy demand periods.

Alternative Mobility
    The mobility sector is making great leaps in cleantech with developments such as electric vehicles (EVs). Types of electric vehicles include battery vehicles, hybrid vehicles, hyperloop tech, and plug-in hybrid vehicles, among others. Furthermore, testing different combinations of sustainable fuels to fully replace conventional automobile fuels. One example of a traditional fuel alternative is green hydrogen derived by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen which is powered exclusively by low carbon sources like solar and wind energy. The mobility sector is also incorporating other eco-friendly technologies like EV charging stations and AI-powered green GPS systems to facilitate decarbonisation.
    Using video telematics to protect vehicles and drivers from high-risk situations on the roads. Vision SDK analyzes real-time traffic data on users’ devices and stores only the relevant data to create insights for stakeholders. Moreover, the captured images are anonymised to ensure privacy. Most importantly, Peregrine’s innovation not only reduces the occurrence of accidents but also generates optimised routes, thus reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through safe and efficient fuel use.

Carbon Capture, Use & Storage
    Carbon capture, use, and storage (CCUS) is the process of capturing carbon emissions, thereby reversing their negative impacts, for storage or upcycling the captured carbon. These techniques ensure clean disposal of industrial carbon dioxide (CO2) which would have otherwise polluted the environment. Innovations in this area include artificial photosynthesis using biosolar leaves and phytoplankton-based solutions that mimic the chemical process of photosynthesis. CCUS advancements are also tackling bovine methane emissions, one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. Besides this, developing technologies to upcycle carbon into various useful materials like carbon-based plastics and biochar.
    Providing direct air capture technology. On installation, Carbominer capturing module traps CO2 from the ambient air without any need for liquefaction or transportation of the gas. The captured CO2 finds use in greenhouses where it improves plant growth and provides greenhouse operators with a cost-effective zero-carbon energy source.

Circular Waste Management
    Safe and sustainable waste management lowers the impact on the environment. Although waste management is an old concept, innovating to either dispose of garbage as effectively as possible or upcycle it into useful materials to improve the product life cycle. Waste to energy solutions incorporates processes like anaerobic digestion, pyrolysis, incineration, and gasification to convert waste into fuel. Other trends include wastewater treatment methods such as greywater recycling, rainwater harvesting, and electro-coagulation systems. Chemical recycling and remanufacturing are the other circular trends in waste management. Creating natural fibers from agricultural waste. Agraloop Biofibre, the textile-grade fiber, is derived from the remnants of various food and medicinal crops. It uses a wet processing technique to convert cellulose fiber from leaves and stems to soft fiber stacks which are spun into yarns. By introducing sustainable raw materials in the supply chain, furthers circularity in the textile industry.

Green Materials
    Industries are replacing fossil-based materials with green alternatives. These materials are sourced from organic sources, including food and agri waste, without producing toxic byproducts. Bioplastics and biofibers are the most commonly used green materials and reduce the amount of waste from single-use plastics and textiles. Moreover, researchers are looking into feedstock alternatives that can replace existing methods of feeding mass-produced livestock, lest to imbalance the ecological food cycle.
    Developing protein alternatives for animal feedstock. The yeastbased product, Arbiom SylPro, offers a balanced amino acid profile in a highly digestible and protein-rich feed ingredient. Moreover, its nutritional value is equivalent to that of soy and whey protein without high GHG emissions and resource use. As a renewable and natural protein source, it is an effective alternative for livestock farmers in protein-deficit regions.

Energy Consumption Management
    One of the main concerns that cleantech caters to is the management and optimisation of energy consumption to reduce energy waste. For example, data centers are highly energy-intensive, but infrastructural innovations are lowering their energy demand. Liquid cooling and modular data centers are a few solutions that achieve this. Liquid cooling is a process wherein a liquid coolant is brought directly to the computer chip to remove excess heat from the data hall. It prevents machines from overheating. Similarly, energy monitoring solutions automatically control the indoor environment in residential and commercial buildings to decrease energy load. Utilising AI and big data to further improve energy monitoring systems.
    Developing a powerbox device that integrates with existing systems to gather energy data. The powerbox connects to the online platform which cleans and processes raw data to provide actionable insights about users’ energy profiles. Sirius thus empowers energy managers, facility heads, and technical teams to automate their reports and achieve energy efficiency while saving time and costs.

Sustainable Automation
    Automation is speeding up manual tasks in different sectors like manufacturing, agriculture, and transportation. Moreover, automation is highly effective in steering industries towards sustainability. An important application of automation is in building monitoring systems that enable autonomous solutions like smart thermostats to control appliances. Another interesting innovation is the smart electricity strip which prevents appliances from going into standby mode and instead shuts them down until they are needed again, which greatly reduces the energy wasted by gadgets when not in use. Sustainable automation also finds applications in a smart factory setting wherein operators use AI to optimise functions.
    Building automation for HVAC control systems. At its Core AI technology self-operates and models buildings continuously, thus adapting the control decisions of the HVAC system. It then predicts required conditions for the future to ensure a clean indoor environment with low CO2 emissions and energy waste. Additionally, DABBEL’s cloud-based dashboard makes monitoring building processes easier and lowers technical failures and operating costs.