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All-in-One Energy System Offers Greener Power

July 31, 2014 9:57 am | by Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council | News | Comments

An innovative 'trigeneration' system fuelled entirely by raw plant oils could have great potential for isolated homes and businesses operating outside grid systems both in the UK and abroad. The small-scale combined cooling, heat and power system has been designed to provide dependable electricity...

Self-Cooling Solar Cells Boost Power, Last Longer

July 22, 2014 12:37 pm | by The Optical Society | News | Comments

Scientists may have overcome one of the major hurdles in developing high-efficiency, long-lasting solar cells—keeping them cool, even in the blistering heat of the noonday Sun. By adding a specially patterned layer of silica glass to the surface of ordinary solar cells...

Improving the Cost and Efficiency of Renewable Energy Storage

July 17, 2014 12:53 pm | by Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne | News | Comments

A major challenge in renewable energy is storage. A common approach is a reaction that splits water into oxygen and hydrogen, and uses the hydrogen as a fuel to store energy. The efficiency of 'water splitting' depends heavily on a solid substance called a catalyst...

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New Materials for Future Green Tech Devices

July 15, 2014 5:35 pm | by American Institute of Physics | News | Comments

From your hot car to your warm laptop, every machine and device in your life wastes a lot of energy through the loss of heat. But thermoelectric devices, which convert heat to electricity and vice versa, can harness that wasted heat, and possibly provide the green tech energy efficiency that's needed for a sustainable future...

Inventor Pushes Solar Panels for Roads, Highways

July 14, 2014 12:38 am | by Nicholas K. Geranios, Associated Press | News | Comments

The solar panels that Idaho inventor Scott Brusaw has built aren't meant for rooftops. They are meant for roads, driveways, parking lots, bike trails and, eventually, highways. Brusaw, an electrical engineer, says the hexagon-shaped panels can withstand the wear and tear...

The New Atomic Age: Building Smaller, Greener Electronics

July 7, 2014 7:03 pm | by University of Alberta | News | Comments

In the drive to get small, Robert Wolkow and his lab at the University of Alberta are taking giant steps forward.The digital age has resulted in a succession of smaller, cleaner and less power-hungry technologies since the days the personal computer fit atop a desk...

HotSpot 70: Shark Detecting Buoy

July 7, 2014 10:46 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

This week on WDD's HotSpot, brought to you by Memory Protection Devices, a new LED Bulb that can be controlled from anywhere; a wireless tool to help you hold hands at a distance; a remote tower for air traffic services; and a clever buoy that detects sharks before they attack...                          

NREL Supercomputer Tackles Grid Challenges

July 2, 2014 9:21 am | by National Renewable Energy Laboratory | News | Comments

"Big data" is playing an increasingly big role in the renewable energy industry and the transformation of the nation's electrical grid, and no single entity provides a better tool for such data than the Energy Department's Energy Systems Integration Facility located on the campus of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory...

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12 of the Highest Paid Engineers on the Planet

July 1, 2014 12:55 pm | by JF Stackhouse, Engineerjobs.com | Blogs | Comments

The surest path to wealth and fortune may be an electrical engineering degree. Every year, Fortune ranks the top five hundred American corporations by adjusted gross revenue. Here are this year’s Fortune 50 CEOs who made their start where ...

Electrostatics Do the Trick

June 24, 2014 12:48 am | by Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie | News | Comments

Organic semiconductors allow for flexible displays, solar cells, and other interesting applications. One common problem in these devices, however, is the interface between the metallic contacts and the organic semiconductor material, where undesirable losses occur.

Collecting Light with Artificial Moth Eyes

June 18, 2014 2:33 pm | by Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA) | News | Comments

All over the world researchers are investigating solar cells which imitate plant photosynthesis, using sunlight and water to create synthetic fuels such as hydrogen. Empa researchers have developed such a photoelectrochemical cell, recreating a moth’s eye to drastically increase...

Photos of the Day: 15 MW Test Rig Drive Unit Weighs 400 Tons

June 17, 2014 10:27 am | by Melissa Fassbender, Associate Editor | News | Comments

With a total weight of two million pounds, and blades as long as 400 feet, a single 15 mega-watt wind turbine would be able to power nearly 3,900 homes. Unfortunately, they don’t exist ... yet ...       

Testing the World’s Largest Wind Turbines

June 17, 2014 10:26 am | by Melissa Fassbender, Associate Editor | News | Comments

With a total weight of two million pounds, and blades as long as 400 feet, a single 15 mega-watt wind turbine would be able to power nearly 3,900 homes. Unfortunately, they don’t exist ... yet ...       

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Power Plant Debate Prompts War of Stats

June 16, 2014 10:28 am | by Josh Lederman, Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama's new pollution limits for power plants have set off an avalanche of information about what the rules will cost, how they will affect your health and how far they will go toward curbing climate change. There's just one problem...

SOPCAWIND, a Multidisciplinary Tool for Designing Wind Farms

June 10, 2014 4:13 pm | by University of the Basque Country | News | Comments

The SOPCAWIND tool is a piece of software that facilitates the design of wind farms, bearing in mind not only the aspects of energy productivity but also the possible impact the wind farm may have on the environment, radars or other telecommunications systems in the vicinity...

New Class of Nanoparticle Brings Cheaper, Lighter Solar Cells Outdoors

June 9, 2014 3:31 pm | by University of Toronto | News | Comments

Think those flat, glassy solar panels on your neighbour’s roof are the pinnacle of solar technology? Think again. Researchers have designed and tested a new class of solar-sensitive nanoparticle that outshines the current state of the art employing this new class of technology...

5 Things to Know about EPA's Power Plant Rule

June 3, 2014 10:14 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The proposal announced Monday calls for the nation's fossil-fuel fired power plants to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030. But Environmental Protection Agency data shows that the nation's power plants...

Controlling Thermal Conductivities Can Improve Energy Storage

June 3, 2014 9:15 pm | by University of Illinois College of Engineering | News | Comments

Controlling the flow of heat through materials is important for many technologies. While materials with high and low thermal conductivities are available, materials with variable and reversible thermal conductivities are rare, and other than high pressure experiments...

Breakthrough in Energy Storage

June 2, 2014 5:47 pm | by University of Central Florida | News | Comments

Imagine being able to carry all the juice you needed to power your MP3 player, smartphone and electric car in the fabric of your jacket? Sounds like science fiction, but it may become a reality thanks to breakthrough technology developed at a University of Central Florida research lab...

Rare Chemical Phenomenon for Harvesting Solar Energy

June 2, 2014 5:34 pm | by National University of Singapore | News | Comments

A team of international scientists has successfully unraveled the chemical reaction responsible for propelling microscopic crystals to leap distances up to hundreds of times their own size when they are exposed to ultraviolet light. This popping effect...

Novel Laser System Mimics Sunlight to Test Solar Cell Efficiency

May 31, 2014 11:23 pm | by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) | News | Comments

Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology have developed a laser-based instrument that generates artificial sunlight to help test solar cell properties and find ways to boost their efficiency. The novel NIST system simulates sunlight...

Obama's Boldest Move on Carbon Comes with Perils

May 31, 2014 11:15 pm | by Dina Cappiello, Associated Press | News | Comments

The new pollution rule the Obama administration announces Monday will be a cornerstone of President Barack Obama's environmental legacy and arguably the most significant U.S. environmental regulation in decades. But it's not one the White House wanted...  

Scientists Develop New Hybrid Energy Transfer System

May 27, 2014 3:13 pm | by University of Southampton | News | Comments

Scientists from the University of Southampton, in collaboration with the Universities of Sheffield and Crete, have developed a new hybrid energy transfer system, which mimics the processes responsible for photosynthesis. From photosynthesis to respiration, the processes of light absorption and its transfer into energy...

Meaghan's Minute: Battery Harnesses Heat Waste

May 23, 2014 9:44 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

Today on Meaghan's Minute, brought to you by Memory Protection Devices, researchers at Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have found a new alternative for low-temperature waste-heat conversion into electricity – that is...                

Planting the 'SEEDS' of Solar Technology in the Home

May 20, 2014 7:47 pm | by DOE/Sandia National Laboratories | News | Comments

In an effort to better understand what persuades people to buy photovoltaic systems for their homes, researchers at Sandia National Laboratories are gathering data on consumer motivations that can feed sophisticated computer models and thus lead to greater use of solar energy...

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