201400626-pistachios-600x298.jpg

The future tastes great, says a trend story in online magazine Slate profiling two unconventional tech-world uses for nuts: a new smartphone with a cashew-powder coating and an eco-city in Turkey to be heated by pistachio shells. 

It’s Nuts: The Tech/Nut Convergence

June 26, 2014

201400626-pistachios-600x298.jpg

The future tastes great, says a trend story in online magazine Slate profiling two unconventional tech-world uses for nuts: a new smartphone with a cashew-powder coating and an eco-city in Turkey to be heated by pistachio shells.

The proposed eco-city is in the province of Gaziantep, Turkey, a pistachio-growing region with significant shell waste—an obvious natural resource. Soil scientist Johannes Lehmann explains that nutshells have been used as an energy source before, but incorporating the plan to burn pistachio shells into the design of the city is new. He remarks:

“The eco-city is a very intriguing aspect,” he says. “They are at the stage where pistachio shells are still a residue without use, and that’s of course an opportunity. . . . There’s no cost associated with growing it or transporting it. It’s already there in a big pile.” A number of processes can be used to extract energy from pistachio shells, including burning, charring, or gasifying them.

According to Lehmann, nut growers in California are also pursuing using shells to produce renewable energy—both electricity and biogas.

Read more in Slate.