Avatar for Feedage Forager
Feedage Fora...
Rating: 62
Member since: 2009-07-24
Feeds: 0
Share |
Subscribe: ScienceDaily: Energy and the Environment News
Energy and the Environment News -- ScienceDaily http://www.sciencedaily.com/rss/earth_climate/energy.xml
Added By: Feedage Forager Feedage Grade B rated
Language: English
Tags:
carbon dioxide  carbon  cells  climate  emissions  energy  gas  new  power  researchers  scientists  solar cells  solar  wind 
Rate this Feed
Rate this feedRate this feedRate this feedRate this feedRate this feed
Rate this feed 1 starRate this feed 2 starRate this feed 3 starRate this feed 4 starRate this feed 5 star

Comments (0)

Feed Details and Statistics Feed Statistics
Preview: ScienceDaily: Energy and the Environment News
ScienceDailyEnergy and the Environment News

Energy and the Environment News -- ScienceDaily



Energy Sources. News and Research. Articles on everything from hydrogen powered cars and solar energy systems to nuclear reactors and fossil fuels.



Published: Sun, 20 Apr 2014 13:12:39 EDT

Last Build Date: Sun, 20 Apr 2014 13:12:39 EDT

 



Surprising material could play huge role in saving energy: Tin selenide is best at converting waste heat to electricity

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 12:45:19 EDT

One strategy for addressing the world's energy crisis is to stop wasting so much energy when producing and using it, such as in coal-fired power plants or transportation. Nearly two-thirds of energy input is lost as waste heat. Now scientists have discovered a surprising material that is the best in the world at converting waste heat to useful electricity. This outstanding property could be exploited in solid-state thermoelectric devices, with potentially enormous energy savings.(image)



Relieving electric vehicle range anxiety with improved batteries

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:13:37 EDT

A new nanomaterial called a metal organic framework could extend the lifespan of lithium-sulfur batteries, which could be used to increase the driving range of electric vehicles. Researchers added the powder, a kind of nanomaterial called a metal organic framework, to the battery's cathode to capture problematic polysulfides that usually cause lithium-sulfur batteries to fail after a few charges. During lab tests, a lithium-sulfur battery with the new MOF cathode maintained 89 percent of its initial power capacity after 100 charge-and discharge cycles.(image)



Environmentally compatible organic solar cells in the future

Wed, 16 Apr 2014 09:04:37 EDT

Environmentally compatible production methods for organic solar cells from novel materials are in the focus of “MatHero”. The new project aims at making organic photovoltaics competitive to their inorganic counterparts by enhancing the efficiency of organic solar cells, reducing their production costs and increasing their life-time.(image)



Scientists come up with method of reducing solar panel glare

Tue, 15 Apr 2014 08:44:19 EDT

The glare from solar farms could be a thing of the past, thanks to new research. Researchers have developed a multi-layer anti-reflection coating for glass surfaces, which reduces the sun's reflection from photovoltaic panels while at the same time improving their efficiency. It is applied using the same technology as that used for depositing anti-reflection coatings on eye glasses.(image)



New design for mobile phone masts could cut carbon emissions

Tue, 15 Apr 2014 08:44:15 EDT

A breakthrough in the design of signal amplifiers for mobile phone masts could deliver a massive 200MW cut in the load on UK power stations, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by around 0.5 million tons a year. (image)



Making dams safer for fish around the world

Mon, 14 Apr 2014 14:08:02 EDT

The pressure changes that many fish experience when they travel through the turbulent waters near a dam can seriously injure or kill the fish. Scientists from around the world, including areas like Southeast Asia and Brazil where huge dams are planned or under construction, are working together to protect fish from the phenomenon, known as barotrauma.(image)



House windows that double as solar panels? Shiny quantum dots brighten future of solar cells

Mon, 14 Apr 2014 12:38:20 EDT

A house window that doubles as a solar panel could be on the horizon, thanks to recent quantum-dot work. Scientists have demonstrated that superior light-emitting properties of quantum dots can be applied in solar energy by helping more efficiently harvest sunlight.(image)



Greenhouse gas emissions from today will be felt for at least 1,000 years

Sun, 13 Apr 2014 09:41:19 EDT

Greenhouse gas emissions from today will greatly affect our descendants for at least 1,000 years. In 1,000 years, between 15 and 40 per cent of the CO2 we emit today will still be left in the atmosphere," says one professor. "We are talking about effects 30 generations ahead. This is something people need to take to heart now."(image)



Cool climate, clean planet: Research suggests cooling action will clean air

Sun, 13 Apr 2014 09:41:17 EDT

Ever-rising greenhouse gas emissions and the potential need to deploy untested and expensive climate engineering technologies are just two of the many bits of bad news in a new report. But there's good news hidden in the bad. If we take action to cool the planet, we can also expect the added benefit of cleaner air, particularly in China, the authors say.(image)



Passive houses save lots of energy

Fri, 11 Apr 2014 09:17:19 EDT

Housing is the easiest sector to change if we are to reach the climate targets, experts say. Norwegian research shows the housing sector today represents about one-third of the country's energy consumption, or about 35 terawatt hours out of a total of 112 terawatt hours. As a result, it is indirectly one of largest contributors to Norway's greenhouse gas emissions.(image)



New climate pragmatism framework prioritizes energy access to drive innovation and development

Wed, 09 Apr 2014 20:45:36 EDT

Expanding access to reliable energy offers better route to address global challenges, climate and energy scholars say in new report. "Climate change can't be solved on the backs of the world's poorest people," said a report co-author. "The key to solving for both climate and poverty is helping nations build innovative energy systems that can deliver cheap, clean and reliable power."(image)



Win-win situation: Growing crops on photovoltaic farms

Wed, 09 Apr 2014 14:39:42 EDT

A new model for solar farms that 'co-locates' crops and solar panels could result in a harvest of valuable biofuel plants along with solar energy. This co-location approach could prove especially useful in sunny, arid regions such as the southwestern United States where water is scarce, researchers said.(image)



Making ethanol without corn or other plants

Wed, 09 Apr 2014 13:47:24 EDT

A copper-based catalyst that produces large quantities of ethanol from carbon monoxide gas at room temperature has been developed by scientists. This promising discovery could provide an eco-friendly alternative to conventional ethanol production from corn and other crops, say the scientists.(image)



New findings to help extend high efficiency solar cells' lifetime

Mon, 07 Apr 2014 09:05:21 EDT

Scientists have made a surprising discovery about the degradation of solar cells that could help pave the way to creating a longer lifetime for these cells.  Key factors for creating cost-efficient solar cells to compete with conventional energy sources like fossil fuels include fabrication cost, efficiency and lifetime of the cells. (image)



Researchers design trees that make it easier to produce paper

Thu, 03 Apr 2014 14:20:31 EDT

Researchers have genetically engineered trees that will be easier to break down to produce paper and biofuel, a breakthrough that will mean using fewer chemicals, less energy and creating fewer environmental pollutants.(image)



Energy breakthrough uses sun to create solar energy materials

Thu, 03 Apr 2014 13:23:53 EDT

Researchers have discovered a way to tap the sun not only as a source of power, but also to directly produce the solar energy materials that make this possible. This breakthrough could make the sun almost a 'one-stop shop' that produces both the materials for solar devices and the eternal energy to power them.(image)



Tiny crystals to boost solar

Wed, 02 Apr 2014 10:00:48 EDT

A new approach to studying solar panel absorber materials has been developed. The technique could accelerate the development of non-toxic and readily available alternatives to current absorbers in thin film based solar cells.(image)



Not so dirty: Methane fuels life in pristine chalk rivers

Tue, 01 Apr 2014 21:04:16 EDT

Scientists have found that naturally high concentrations of the greenhouse gas methane contributes to energy production in chalk rivers.(image)



Wind energy: New insight into best arrangement of wind turbines on large installations

Tue, 01 Apr 2014 11:19:59 EDT

Researchers have developed a new way to study wake effects that includes the airflow both within and around a wind farm and challenges the conventional belief that turbines arrayed in checker board patterns produce the highest power output. Their study provides insight into factors that determine the most favorable positioning.(image)



Using more wood for construction can slash global reliance on fossil fuels

Mon, 31 Mar 2014 17:06:35 EDT

Increasing the wood harvest to the equivalent of 34 percent or more of annual wood growth to meet construction demands worldwide could drastically reduce the global reliance on fossil fuels while protecting biodiversity and carbon storage capacity, according to a new study.(image)



What will climate policy mean for coal?

Mon, 31 Mar 2014 11:42:35 EDT

Limiting climate change to 2 degrees C means shutting down coal power plants -- an unpopular proposition for coal power companies. But a new study shows that delaying climate policies could prove even worse for power plant owners.(image)



Better management of parking ventilation systems

Mon, 31 Mar 2014 08:40:06 EDT

A recent study at an urban multiuse parking garage has demonstrated a new method that greatly reduces energy consumptions, carbon dioxide emissions and ventilation systems cost, all compared with to the systems currently used. The ventilation of an indoor parking garage consists of introducing acceptable air from outside and to filter the polluted air caused by car emissions, especially carbon monoxide (CO). The goal is to reduce all contaminants to reasonable healthy levels.(image)



Revolutionary solar cells double as lasers

Fri, 28 Mar 2014 08:55:40 EDT

Latest research finds that the trailblazing 'perovskite' material used in solar cells can double up as a laser, strongly suggesting the astonishing efficiency levels already achieved in these cells is only part of the journey.(image)



Anaerobic treatment of wastewater: A step towards sustainable energy

Wed, 26 Mar 2014 11:45:12 EDT

Until recently, most of the world’s energy supplies have come from coal, oil and gas. Scarcity of natural resources, surging energy prices and global warming had focused attention on renewable energy, and consequently, alternative approaches to producing bio-energy. Over the last five years, one particular technology for the production of biocoal - Hydrothermal Carbonization (HTC) - has undergone significant development and has become a subject of major scientific interest.(image)



New magnetic materials for extracting energy from tides

Tue, 25 Mar 2014 09:51:28 EDT

The objective of the MAGNETIDE project is to develop a new type of generator that transforms the mechanical energy produced by the movement of the tides into electric energy. The researchers have modified the generator’s design so that components manufactured using PIM, Powder Injection Moulding , could be installed. This would reduce the cost of these systems as well as increasing their efficiency by up to 30%, according to the scientists’ calculations.(image)



Managing renewable energy intelligently

Tue, 25 Mar 2014 09:48:14 EDT

Although more and more of our electrical energy is coming from sources where supply is variable – whether from wind turbines, solar parks or biomass facilities – grid structures, industry and private households alike are not yet prepared to deal with the inevitable fluctuations. Smart energy management systems are the way to put robust supply networks in place and to ensure that renewables are harnessed as efficiently as possible.(image)



Scientists develop silicon cells capable of absorbing infrared radiation from the sun

Tue, 25 Mar 2014 09:48:08 EDT

Researchers have developed a silicon photovoltaic cell capable of turning infrared radiation into electricity. The sun is an inexhaustible source of energy which well-exploited, could solve many of the energy suply problems we have today. The photovoltaic cell, commonly known as solar cell, is a device capable of turning solar light into electricity. However, there are many obstacles that prevent a massive use, such as a relatively high cost (0.02 euros per watt generated) and the low efficiency of silicon based solar cells, around 17 per cent.(image)



Bioenergy from sustainable forestry does not meet EU emission reduction criteria

Tue, 25 Mar 2014 09:44:27 EDT

The levels of forest residue bioenergy, considered to be sustainable from a forestry perspective, may provide considerable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions in European countries. Still, these reductions fall short of a 60% threshold planned by the EU. This mismatch may have important climate policy implications.(image)



Rain used to illuminate low income homes

Mon, 24 Mar 2014 18:14:37 EDT

By collecting rainwater, students were able to generate electricity using a microturbine and supplying the vital liquid to homes in a poor community in Iztapalapa, in Mexico City. This system is similar to that used in dams, which uses rainwater to rotate a microturbine and generate electricity. Currently, it is only possible to recharge portable 12 volt batteries, whose energy is sufficient to power LED lamps but not to provide power to the entire house.(image)



New insight into improved wave energy testing

Mon, 24 Mar 2014 11:15:56 EDT

Pioneering research could provide a significant boost in the vital quest to harness wave power as a viable renewable energy source for the future. Researchers deployed wave measurement buoys and used wave modelling to show how variations in wave size and strength could be resolved.(image)



Cold short-cut to carbon dioxide storage

Fri, 21 Mar 2014 11:21:46 EDT

Could refrigeration technology -- against all the odds -- kick-start carbon dioxide storage in the North Sea? All over the world, scientists are on the hunt for solutions that will allow carbon dioxide to be captured from large power stations and industrial plants. Many of the methods in use today employ chemicals or advanced materials to extract carbon dioxide from flue gases. But now, a chilly alternative is showing signs of heating up. When carbon dioxide-rich gases are compressed and refrigerated, the carbon dioxide turns into a liquid -- like steam on a cold bathroom mirror -- and can be drawn off.(image)



Wind farms can provide society a surplus of reliable clean energy

Thu, 20 Mar 2014 14:08:54 EDT

Researchers have found that the wind industry can easily afford the energetic cost of building batteries and other grid-scale storage technologies. However, for the solar industry, scientists found that more work is needed to make grid-scale storage energetically sustainable.(image)



Algae may be a potential source of biofuels and biochemicals even in cool climate

Thu, 20 Mar 2014 10:08:20 EDT

Algae are organisms useful in many ways in the transition towards a bio-economy. Even in a cool climate as in Finland, algae might be used to produce biochemicals and biofuels, besides use in capture of industrial carbon dioxide emissions. Algae are not yet profitably cultivated for energy production purposes. The cultivation is challenging especially in cool climate where there is little daylight in winter.(image)



Fierce 2012 magnetic storm just missed us: Earth dodged huge magnetic bullet from the sun

Tue, 18 Mar 2014 15:49:40 EDT

On July 23, 2012, a huge magnetic storm propelled by two nearly simultaneous coronal mass ejections on the sun plowed through Earth's orbit. Luckily, Earth was on the other side of the sun at the time. Had the outburst hit Earth, however, it would have rivaled the largest magnetic storm to strike Earth in recorded history, possibly wreaking havoc with the electrical grid, satellites and GPS.(image)



A new algorithm improves the efficiency of small wind turbines

Tue, 18 Mar 2014 09:34:03 EDT

In recent years, mini wind energy has been developing in a spectacular way. However, level of efficiency of small wind turbines is low. To address this problem, scientists have developed an adaptative algorithm. The improvements that are applied to the control of these turbines will in fact contribute towards making them more efficient.(image)



Shale could be long-term home for problematic nuclear waste

Mon, 17 Mar 2014 10:35:10 EDT

Shale, the source of the United States’ current natural gas boom, could help solve another energy problem: what to do with radioactive waste from nuclear power plants. The unique properties of the sedimentary rock and related clay-rich rocks make it ideal for storing the potentially dangerous spent fuel for millennia, according to geologists studying possible storage sites.(image)



Recovering metals and minerals from waste

Fri, 14 Mar 2014 09:36:54 EDT

Scarcity of clean water is one of the most serious global challenges. Scientists have now developed energy-efficient methods for reuse of water in industrial processes and means for recovering valuable minerals and materials from waste for recycling. Rapid tools were also developed for identification of environmental pollutants.(image)



Turning raw natural gas into upgraded liquid alcohol fuel

Thu, 13 Mar 2014 14:26:04 EDT

Chemists have discovered of a new way to turn raw natural gas into upgraded liquid alcohol fuel. The process uses ordinary 'main group' metals like thallium and lead to trigger the conversion of natural gas to liquid alcohol. The process occurs at far lower temperatures than current industry practices. This could help reduce dependence on petroleum.(image)



Origin of life: Simulating how Earth kick-started metabolism

Thu, 13 Mar 2014 09:27:10 EDT

Researchers have developed a new approach to simulating the energetic processes that may have led to the emergence of cell metabolism on Earth -- a crucial biological function for all living organisms. The research could help scientists to understand whether it is possible for life to have emerged in similar environments on other worlds.(image)



Europe's resilience of natural gas networks during conflicts and crises probed with maths

Wed, 12 Mar 2014 18:20:22 EDT

Gas networks in Eastern European countries, such as Ukraine and Belarus are less resilient than the UK during conflicts and crises, according to new research from mathematicians. A decentralized approach to managing congestion on gas pipeline networks could be crucial for energy security during geopolitical conflicts or natural disasters, research suggests.(image)



Solar policy pathways for U.S. states examined

Tue, 11 Mar 2014 14:15:40 EDT

The Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory has published a report that aligns solar policy and market success with state demographics. By organizing the 48 contiguous states into four peer groups based on shared non-policy characteristics, the research team was able to contextualize the impact of various solar policies on photovoltaic installations.(image)



Small biomass power plants could help rural economies, stabilize national power grid

Mon, 10 Mar 2014 16:15:56 EDT

Researchers have found that creating a bioenergy grid with these small plants could benefit people in rural areas of the country as well as provide relief to an overworked national power grid.(image)



A shocking diet: Researchers describe microbe that 'eats' electricity

Mon, 10 Mar 2014 14:40:00 EDT

Researchers have shown that the commonly found bacterium Rhodopseudomonas palustris can use natural conductivity to pull electrons from minerals located remotely in soil and sediment while remaining at the surface, where they absorb the sunlight needed to produce energy.(image)



Scents and sustainability: Renewable sources for artificial scents and flavors

Mon, 10 Mar 2014 10:23:26 EDT

Fresh banana, a waft of flowers, blueberry: the scents in some labs are a little sweeter than most. Researchers are engineering bacteria to make esters -- molecules widely used as scents and flavorings, and also as basic feedstock for chemical processes from paints to fuels.(image)



Making it easier to plan offshore wind farms: New tool to help development

Mon, 10 Mar 2014 09:06:19 EDT

When planning an offshore wind farm, it is important to consider the wind, waves and the seabed at the location where the turbines will stand. Researchers have now developed a dedicated tool that gives a combined overview of all the challenges that need to be considered by developers.(image)



Atomically thin, flexible, semi-transparent solar cells created

Sun, 09 Mar 2014 15:05:46 EDT

A lot of research has been done on graphene recently -- carbon flakes, consisting of only one layer of atoms. As it turns out, there are other materials too which exhibit remarkable properties if they are arranged in a single layer. One of them is tungsten diselenide, which could be used for photovoltaics. Ultrathin layers made of Tungsten and Selenium have now been created; experiments show that they may be used as flexible, semi-transparent solar cells.(image)



Promising news for producing fuels through artificial photosynthesis

Fri, 07 Mar 2014 13:36:31 EST

There's promising news from the front on efforts to produce fuels through artificial photosynthesis. A new study shows that nearly 90 percent of the electrons generated by a hybrid material designed to store solar energy in hydrogen are being stored in the target hydrogen molecules.(image)



Biofuel-to-hydrocarbon conversion technology licensed

Thu, 06 Mar 2014 14:25:52 EST

Vertimass LLC has licensed an ORNL technology that directly converts ethanol into a hydrocarbon blend-stock for use in transportation fuels. The technology offers a new pathway to biomass-derived renewable fuels that can lower greenhouse gas emissions and decrease U.S. reliance on foreign sources of oil.(image)



Save money and the planet: Turn your old milk jugs into 3-D printer filament

Wed, 05 Mar 2014 12:52:53 EST

Making your own stuff with a 3-D printer is vastly cheaper than what you'd pay for manufactured goods, even factoring in the cost of buying the plastic filament. Yet, you can drive the cost down even more by making your own filament from old milk jugs. And, while you are patting yourself on the back for saving 99 cents on the dollar, there's a bonus: you can feel warm and fuzzy about preserving the environment. Making your own plastic 3-D printer filament from milk jugs uses less energy -- often a lot less -- than recycling milk jugs conventionally.(image)



Smart grid for electric vehicle fleet

Wed, 05 Mar 2014 08:46:12 EST

Being able to charge up to 30 electric cars at once requires some ingenious energy management. Researchers are incorporating a mix of renewables into the design of a smart grid for Germany’s largest charging station.(image)



Solar power: Making it less expensive and more efficient

Tue, 04 Mar 2014 09:50:33 EST

Researchers are reporting early results on a way to make solar-powered panels in lights, calculators and roofs lighter, less expensive, more flexible (therefore less breakable) and more efficient.(image)



Want to save water? Toilets have greatest impact

Mon, 03 Mar 2014 15:41:08 EST

Many Americans are confused about the best ways to conserve water and have a slippery grasp on how much water different activities use, according to a national online survey. Experts say the best strategy for conserving water is to focus on efficiency improvements such as replacing toilets and retrofitting washing machines. However, the largest group of the participants, nearly 43 percent, cited taking shorter showers, which does save water but may not be the most effective action. Very few participants cited replacing toilets or flushing less, even though toilets use the most volume of water daily.(image)



A new renewable energy source? Device captures energy from Earth's infrared emissions to outer space

Mon, 03 Mar 2014 15:40:15 EST

When the sun sets on a remote desert outpost and solar panels shut down, what energy source will provide power through the night? A battery, perhaps, or an old diesel generator? Perhaps something strange and new. Scientists now envision a device that would harvest energy from Earth's infrared emissions into outer space. Heated by the sun, our planet is warm compared to the frigid vacuum beyond. Thanks to recent technological advances, the researchers say, that heat imbalance could soon be transformed into direct-current (DC) power, taking advantage of a vast and untapped energy source.(image)



Methane leaks from palm oil wastewater are a climate concern

Thu, 27 Feb 2014 13:48:49 EST

In recent years, palm oil production has come under fire from environmentalists concerned about the deforestation of land in the tropics to make way for new palm plantations. Now there is a new reason to be concerned about palm oil's environmental impact, according to researchers.(image)



Optical 'nanocavity' to boost light absorption in semiconductors; improve solar cells, cameras and more

Wed, 26 Feb 2014 11:09:02 EST

Scientists are developing an optical 'nanocavity' that boosts the amount of light that ultrathin semiconductors absorb. The advancement could lead to: more powerful photovoltaic cells; faster video cameras; and it could be useful for splitting water using energy from light, which could aid in the development of hydrogen fuel.(image)



Superabsorbing design may lower manufacturing cost of thin film solar cells

Wed, 26 Feb 2014 11:08:38 EST

Researchers have developed a 'superabsorbing' design that may significantly improve the light absorption efficiency of thin film solar cells and drive down manufacturing costs.(image)



Offshore wind farms could tame hurricanes before they reach land

Wed, 26 Feb 2014 07:50:19 EST

Computer simulations have shown that offshore wind farms with thousands of wind turbines could have sapped the power of three real-life hurricanes, significantly decreasing their winds and accompanying storm surge, and possibly preventing billions of dollars in damages. In the case of Hurricane Katrina, the computer model revealed that an array of 78,000 wind turbines off the coast of New Orleans would have significantly weakened the hurricane well before it made landfall.(image)



Portable hydrogen fuel cell unit to provide green, sustainable power to Honolulu port

Tue, 25 Feb 2014 10:09:39 EST

Clean hydrogen power that’s expected to lower emissions and reduce energy consumption will be coming to the Port of Honolulu in 2015 after the completion of a new fuel cell technology demonstration, one that could lead to a commercial technology for ports worldwide.(image)



Sugarcane converted to cold-tolerant, oil-producing crop

Mon, 24 Feb 2014 11:02:10 EST

A multi-institutional team reports that it can increase sugarcane's geographic range, boost its photosynthetic rate by 30 percent and turn it into an oil-producing crop for biodiesel production.(image)



Roots to shoots: Hormone transport in plants deciphered

Thu, 20 Feb 2014 13:25:30 EST

The protein essential for relocating cytokinins from roots to shoots has now been identified. The regulating hormone distribution mechanisms in plants have been identified before, but there was a poor understanding of how they worked. This new research could lead to sustainable bioenergy crops with increased growth and reduced needs for fertilizer.(image)