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The Lead

Is Space-Based Solar Power the Energy of the Future?

December 23, 2014 12:10 pm | by Peter Shadbolt, for CNN | News | Comments

In space there's no atmosphere, it's never cloudy, and in geosynchronous orbits it's never night: a perfect place for a solar power station to harvest uninterrupted power 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The concept has been around since the 1940s when science fiction writer Isaac Asimov posited the idea of a ... 

Wind Farm Operator PacifiCorp Energy Pleads Guilty in Bird Deaths

December 22, 2014 11:41 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Wind farm operator PacifiCorp Energy will pay $2.5 million in fines after pleading guilty Friday...

Research Finds Graphene Oxide Can Improve Rechargeable Batteries

December 19, 2014 9:11 am | by Kansas State University | News | Comments

A Kansas State University engineering team has discovered some of graphene oxide's important...

Stanford Faculty Awarded Seed Grants for Innovative Energy Research

December 15, 2014 12:23 pm | by Stanford University | News | Comments

Stanford University's Precourt Institute for Energy, Precourt Energy Efficiency Center...

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Fuel Cells A Long Way From Mainstream, Despite Toyota Launch

December 12, 2014 11:10 am | by Neil Winton, Forbes Contributor | News | Comments

You would think that when an automotive giant like Toyota declared its fuel cell car ready for prime time, questions about hydrogen technology had been laid to rest. You’d be wrong. The loudest critics of fuel cells may have axes to grind. Electric car maker Telsa Motors’ CEO Elon Musk says hydrogen is more suitable for the upper stage of rockets than ... 

Micro-Windmills: From Lab to Market

December 9, 2014 4:40 pm | by Meaghan Ziemba, Editor, @MZiembaWDD | Articles | Comments

Not all design engineering ideas begin as sketches on a restaurant napkin. Some designs start in the labs at the most prestigious engineering schools around the world, such is the story of Jung-Chih (J.C.) Chiao and Smitha Rao’s micro-windmill that generates wind energy ...                             

Energy Harvesting Wireless Technology Applications

December 8, 2014 12:08 pm | by Jim O'Callaghan, President of EnOcean Inc. | Articles | Comments

The trend towards ultra-low power wireless communication is ongoing. It allows data communication wherever power-hungry standards like WiFi or GSM are not suitable. This is particularly interesting for high-density sensor networks that deliver information from hundreds or thousands of measuring points, enabling intelligent ... 

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Stephen Hawking Gets an Upgrade

December 4, 2014 4:30 pm | by Alex Shanahan, Manager of Multimedia Production | Videos | Comments

Today on Engineering Newswire, we’re turning our arms into touchscreens, communicating with Stephen Hawking with upgraded sensors and software, and taking a ride on the bio-bus ... powered by poop ...       

High-Tech Mirror to Beams Heat Away from Buildings Into Space

December 1, 2014 11:20 am | by Chris Cesare, Stanford Engineering | News | Comments

Stanford engineers have invented a revolutionary coating material that can help cool buildings, even on sunny days, by radiating heat away from the buildings and sending it directly into space ...                           

Electric Car Challenge Sparks Students’ STEM Interest

November 20, 2014 11:22 am | by Sandia National Laboratories | News | Comments

Aspiring automotive engineers from 27 middle schools across New Mexico will compete in the New Mexico Electric Car Challenge on Saturday, Nov. 22, from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Highland High School gymnasium in Albuquerque. Forty-six teams will participate in a race, a design...

Scientists Get to the Heart of Fool's Gold as a Solar Material

November 19, 2014 11:40 am | by University of Wisconsin-Madison | News | Comments

As the installation of photovoltaic solar cells continues to accelerate, scientists are looking for inexpensive materials beyond the traditional silicon that can efficiently convert sunlight into electricity. Theoretically, iron pyrite -- a cheap compound that makes a common mineral known as fool's gold -- could do the job, but when it works at all, the conversion ... 

Electronica 2014 Top Ten

November 19, 2014 11:27 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

ECN and WDD attended electronica 2014 in Munich, Germany. The show had more than 70,000 attendees, thousands of exhibitors, and an endless amount of new products. Here are our top ten products from the show ...                          

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Google Data Center Powered by Dutch Wind Energy

November 18, 2014 10:32 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Google says it will buy the entire output of an 18-turbine, 62-megawatt Dutch wind energy project in the Netherlands to supply power to a major data center it is building ...                   

A Bike Path Near Amsterdam Is Now Generating Solar Power

November 17, 2014 12:09 pm | by Randy Rieland | News | Comments

This week, in the Amsterdam suburb of Krommenie, a little stretch of bikeway officially opened to the public. It’s not all that long—not even three-quarters the length of an American football field—but it is perhaps a glimpse into the future for a country that has almost 22,000 miles ...

Toyota's Hydrogen Fuel Cell Car Coming to the U.S. in 2016

November 17, 2014 11:52 am | by Stan Schroeder, Mashable | News | Comments

Toyota’s hydrogen fuel cell car finally has a name and a rollout plan. The water-vapor-producing vehicle, called Mirai, was first unveiled in June 2014 (its name means “future” in Japanese). The four-door sedan is coming to northeastern U.S. in ...

X-REL Semiconductor’s Bidirectional Level Translators

November 17, 2014 11:17 am | by WDD Staff | Product Releases | Comments

X-REL Semiconductor has unveiled two new products targeting digital applications in demanding markets including aerospace, industrial, hybrid and electric vehicles, transportation, geothermal and oil and gas ...                     

New Form of Crystalline Order Holds Promise for Thermoelectric Applications

November 17, 2014 11:08 am | by Vanderbilt University | News | Comments

A team of researchers from Vanderbilt University and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) now reports that it has discovered an entirely new form of crystalline order that simultaneously exhibits both crystal and polycrystalline properties, which they describe as "interlaced crystals" ... 

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This Country Has Enough Wind Power to Power Every Home

November 12, 2014 10:06 am | by Kasey Panetta, Editor | Blogs | Comments

In a win for alternative energy (there seem to be more and more these days) the recently released numbers show that during the month of October, wind power generated 126 percent of the energy needed to power every home in Scotland. The ...

New 3D Display Technology Promises Greater Energy Efficiency

November 6, 2014 11:01 am | by Lyndsay Meyer, The Optical Society | News | Comments

The ultra-thin LCD screen described in a paper in The Optical Society’s (OSA) journal Optics Letters is capable of holding three-dimensional images without a power source ...                                         

Harnessing Error-Prone Chips

October 31, 2014 10:24 am | by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office | News | Comments

As transistors get smaller, they also grow less reliable. Increasing their operating voltage can help, but that means a corresponding increase in power consumption ...                                   

Flying Car Transforms in Seconds

October 31, 2014 9:40 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

Today on Engineering Newswire, we are learning that rocket science is actually pretty hard, flying, terrified, in a windowless plane, bringing new life to FrankenEyes … and flying a car ...                        

Photos of the Day: MIT Wristband Could Make AC Obsolete

October 29, 2014 11:49 am | News | Comments

A team of students at MIT is busy working on a prototype device that could eliminate much of that demand, and they’re doing it by asking one compelling question: Why not just heat and cool our bodies instead? The Wristify prototype is a personal climate-controlling wearable ... 

MIT Wristband Could Make AC Obsolete

October 29, 2014 10:28 am | by Kyle Vanhemert | News | Comments

Keeping indoor spaces at comfortable temperatures requires a huge amount of electricity–especially in sweltering climates like India and Brazil–and in the U.S. alone it accounts for a full 16.5 percent of energy use. All of that adds up to a big problem. At a point when humans need to take a sober look at our energy use ... 

Electric-car Drivers Trading Gas for Solar Power

October 29, 2014 9:38 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

Owners of electric vehicles have already gone gas-free. Now, a growing number are powering their cars with sunlight. Solar panels installed on the roof of a home or garage can easily generate enough electricity to power an electric or plug-in gas-electric hybrid vehicle ... 

Multiple Companies Fund NuCurrent's Commercial Development

October 22, 2014 5:08 pm | by NuCurrent | News | Comments

Integrators continue to turn to NuCurrent to help build in efficient wireless power capabilities into accessories, smartphones, cars, and the places people visit every day like the coffee shop and office. With NuCurrent’s technology, consumer products benefit from improved simultaneous charging of multiple devices with different power requirements...

The Next Era in Power Electronics

October 22, 2014 1:40 pm | by Mike Sherman, Managing Partner, Chrysalix EVC | Articles | Comments

It’s estimated that 10 percent of all the power generated around the world is lost as heat through inefficient power conversion – that is when electric energy is converted from one form to another, such as between AC (alternating current) and DC (direct current), changing the voltage or frequency, or some combination of these...

Researchers Build "Smart City" to Test Smart Grid Technologies

October 22, 2014 10:35 am | by Chen-Ching Liu, Washington State University | News | Comments

Addressing the critical national need for a reliable and secure electric power grid, Washington State University researchers are building the most comprehensive "smart city" laboratory in the U.S. to test smart grid technologies. Scientists have received...                        

Leaded RF Chokes with High Current Capability

October 22, 2014 9:27 am | by WDD Staff | Product Releases | Comments

TDK Corporation announced new EPCOS leaded RF chokes with high current capability. The series with designation LBC+ offers components for rated currents...

AITEX is Developing Intelligent Autonomous Clothing with Farsens Chips

October 16, 2014 4:15 pm | News | Comments

AITEX is developing technical textiles to act as antennas that harvest energy from RF fields. This energy is used by Farsens RFID chip to drive embedded sensors such as those monitoring temperature or heartbeat.

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