One is a solar-​​powered air­plane that flew for 26 con­sec­u­tive hours. Another is a rev­o­lu­tionary yet ele­gant method for saving energy while show­ering. There are also envi­ron­men­tally friendly build­ings that use a variety of inno­v­a­tive approaches aimed at sus­tain­ability, energy effi­ciency, and reducing their carbon footprints.

These are a just few exam­ples of the award-​​winning Swiss energy projects that will be fea­tured in a trav­eling exhibit that blends art and sci­ence and is making its world pre­miere at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity on Friday. The exhibit is pre­sented in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Swiss Fed­eral Office of Energy and swissnex Boston, the Con­sulate of Switzer­land. It will be on dis­play in the Inter­na­tional Vil­lage lobby through mid-​​September.

The exhibit high­lights 25 projects, all of which have received the renowned Watt d’Or award. Estab­lished in 2007, the award is given by the Swiss Fed­eral Office of Energy in recog­ni­tion of out­standing Swiss energy projects that offer a sig­nif­i­cant ben­efit for society through inno­va­tions including mobility, renew­able energy, and building efficiencies.

In addi­tion to infor­ma­tional posters, the exhibit includes a number of mul­ti­media and other visual com­po­nents. These include video screens, solar panels, and an energy effi­cient elec­tric “Flyer” bicycle that is used in a bike rental ser­vice in Switzer­land. A model of Pac Car II, a sleek fuel economy vehicle pow­ered by a fuel cell and which set a world record in 2005 for energy-​​efficient dri­ving, is also on dis­play. The exhibit even includes a demon­stra­tion area for Joulia, the world’s first shower tray with an inte­grated heat exchanger, which extracts heat from the out­going shower water and uses it to warm up the incoming cold water.

Visitors at an opening reception Thursday night admire the Swiss innovations on display at a new exhibit opening Friday in International Village at Northeastern. Photo by Mariah Tauger.

Vis­i­tors at an opening recep­tion Thursday night admire the Swiss inno­va­tions on dis­play at a new exhibit opening Friday in Inter­na­tional Vil­lage at North­eastern. Photo by Mariah Tauger.

The exhibit’s public opening Friday coin­cides with a day­long sem­inar at North­eastern con­vening renowned inno­va­tors and leading author­i­ties on energy from industry, acad­emia, and gov­ern­ment from the U.S. and Switzer­land. The day will fea­ture a range of dis­cus­sions on sub­jects related to energy, clean tech­nology, and inno­va­tion that have sig­nif­i­cant global implications.

At a recep­tion Thursday evening inau­gu­rating the Watt d’Or exhibit, Doris Leuthard, a Swiss Fed­eral Coun­cilor and head of Switzerland’s Depart­ment of the Envi­ron­ment, Trans­port, Energy and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, noted that the exhibit and Friday’s energy summit will serve sev­eral impor­tant roles: inspiring inno­va­tion, bringing together top minds to dis­cuss solu­tions to global energy chal­lenges, and strength­ening rela­tion­ships and col­lab­o­ra­tions between Mass­a­chu­setts and Switzerland.

Stephen W. Director, provost and senior vice pres­i­dent for aca­d­emic affairs, noted that these events also dove­tail with Northeastern’s long­standing com­mit­ment to green ini­tia­tives on campus and the pur­suit of use-​​inspired research in sus­tain­ability, one of the university’s core research themes.

Friday’s summit will include keynote addresses by Leuthard and Director, as well as Ben­jamin B. Downing, Mass­a­chu­setts Senate chairman of the Joint Com­mittee on Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, Util­i­ties and Energy, and Lino Guzzella, a pro­fessor of ther­motronics at the Swiss Fed­eral Insti­tute of Tech­nology Zurich. Win­ners of the Watt d’Or award will also give TED-​​style pre­sen­ta­tions on their inno­va­tions, and a series of panel dis­cus­sions will focus on topics such as public sector energy research and bringing tech­nology to market.

In 2013, North­eastern part­nered with swissnex Boston to sponsor another campus exhibit at Gallery 360 called “Swiss Style Reboot: New Per­spec­tives for Infor­ma­tion Design.” The exhibit fea­tured dynamic visu­al­iza­tion work from Switzer­land during the 1950s and 60s, an era rec­og­nized for pro­ducing remark­ably clear and func­tional design. It also high­lighted more recent work inspired by Swiss style.