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Volvo's ROAR (RObot based Autonomous Refuse handling) project has entered into the prototype testing phase. It's designed to autonomously empty trash cans from the back of a garbage truck, saving the driver from having to manually load bins into the hopper.

Volvo is working on a project that has robots pick up your trash while a human oversees everything from the relative comfort of the garbage truck.

As the ancient idiom says, "Waste not, want not." Researchers at Lund University in Sweden are making it happen by turning ash from burned garbage into hydrogen.

Here's an odd little story from Japan today: the battery system that is used in Mitsubishi's i-MiEV electric car is going to get a workout as the driving force for the trash compactor in the Kyokuto Kaihatsu Kogyo Company's electric garbage collection truck. Running the compactor off of batteries instead of the truck's engine allows for cleaner, quieter garbage collection, as we've seen before. Mitsubishi says that the i-MiEV's battery will help the truck reduce CO2 emissions by 75 percent. Also

As recently as January we reported on plasma vaporisation technology capable of turning organic waste material into hydrogen and carbon monoxide, a mixture called synthesis gas, or syn-gas, that can be used as a fuel or as a valuable feedstock in further chemical processes. The company in question then was U.S. based Integrated Environmental Technologies.

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