The key to creating a material that would be ideal for converting solar energy to heat is tuning the material’s spectrum of absorption just right. It should absorb virtually all wavelengths of light that reach Earth’s surface from the sun— but not much of the rest of the spectrum, since that would increase the energy that is reradiated by the material, and thus lost to the conversion process.
Present-day lithium batteries are efficient but involve a range of resource and environmental...
By combining a pair of solar cells made with a mineral called perovskite and low cost electrodes...
Abundant supplies of natural gas will do little to reduce harmful U.S. emissions causing climate...
Penn State Univ. says that General Electric Co. will give the school up to $10 million to create a new center for natural gas industry research.
Scientists have scoured cow rumens and termite guts for microbes that can efficiently break down plant cell walls for the production of next-generation biofuels, but some of the best microbial candidates actually may reside in the human lower intestine.
The Univ. of California says it has made one of the largest ever solar energy purchases by a university system in the U.S. The UC system says the deal will provide enough solar power to offset 60 percent of the electricity use at five of the state's 10 campuses, as well as some university medical centers.
Four companies are proposing an $8 billion project to supply the Los Angeles area with large amounts of electricity from a wind farm in Wyoming via an energy storage facility in Utah.
Researchers have created a small-scale hydrogen generator that uses light and a two-dimensional graphene platform to boost production of the hard-to-make element. The research also unveiled a previously unknown property of graphene. The two-dimensional chain of carbon atoms not only gives and receives electrons, but can also transfer them into another substance.
The California State Teachers' Retirement System says it plans to increase its investments in clean energy and technology to $3.7 billion, from $1.4 billion, over the next five years.
Chevron has become the first energy company to meet a new set of voluntary shale gas drilling standards that aim to go beyond existing state laws in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia, the Pittsburgh-based Center for Sustainable Shale announced today.
The price of solar energy in the U.S. continues to fall substantially, according to the latest editions of two annual reports. A third report shows that local permitting and other regulatory procedures can significantly impact residential photovoltaic prices.
A fevered search for the next great high-energy, rechargeable battery technology is on. Scientists are reporting they have overcome key obstacles toward making lithium-sulfur batteries, which have the potential to leave today’s lithium-ion technology in the dust.
A study has pinpointed the likely source of most natural gas contamination in drinking-water wells associated with hydraulic fracturing, and it’s not the source many people may have feared. What’s more, the problem may be fixable with improved construction standards for cement well linings and casings at hydraulic fracturing sites.
A comprehensive look at how tiny particles in a lithium ion battery electrode behave shows that rapid-charging the battery and using it to do high-power, rapidly draining work may not be as damaging as researchers had thought– and that the benefits of slow draining and charging may have been overestimated.
Chemists have reported a new form of hydrogen production that is 30 times faster than the current state-of-the-art method. This is a major step forward in the production of hydrogen from water, which could lead to a new era of cheap, clean and renewable energy.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has rejected a senior federal expert's recommendation to shut down California's last operating nuclear power plant until the agency can determine whether its twin reactors can withstand powerful shaking from nearby earthquake faults. In a decision, the agency concluded there is no immediate or significant safety concern at the Diablo Canyon plant.
Little is known about the environmental and public health impact of certain natural gas extraction techniques— including hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking— that occur near residential areas. Now, a study has found a greater prevalence of health symptoms reported among residents living close to natural gas wells, including those drilled by fracking.
Around the world, there is more salty groundwater than fresh, drinkable groundwater. For example, 60 percent of India is underlain by salty water. Now, an analysis shows that a different desalination technology called electrodialysis, powered by solar panels, could provide enough clean, palatable drinking water to supply the needs of a typical village.
Flying high above the California desert, researchers recently took to the skies for the second year in a row with a DC-8 and other aircraft to study the effects on emissions and contrail formation of burning alternative fuels in jet engines. This follow-up set of flight tests repeated a similar series of trials flown during 2013, while also adding a few new wrinkles to the investigations to capture more and better data.
To bring electric cars to the masses, Tesla Motors will use an expanse of desert where wild mustangs still roam for a factory that the company projects will crank out enough batteries to power 500,000 vehicles annually by decade's end.
Researchers have engineered the harmless gut bacteria E. coli to generate renewable propane. The development is a step toward commercial production of a source of fuel that could one day provide an alternative to fossil fuels.
A senior federal nuclear expert is urging regulators to shut down California's last operating nuclear plant until they can determine whether the facility's twin reactors can withstand powerful shaking from any one of several nearby earthquake faults.
Recycled tires could see new life in lithium-ion batteries that provide power to plug-in electric vehicles and store energy produced by wind and solar. By modifying the microstructural characteristics of carbon black, a substance recovered from discarded tires, a team is developing a better anode for lithium-ion batteries.
Existing power plants around the world will pump out more than 300 billion tons of carbon dioxide over their expected lifetimes, significantly adding to atmospheric levels of the climate-warming gas.
China wants to build 60 coal-to-gas plants as part of a controversial energy plan. The country hopes the plants will churn out desperately needed natural gas and electricity while cleaning up the toxic skies above. However, the plants will also release vast amounts of heat-trapping CO2, even as the world struggles to curb greenhouse gas emissions and stave off global warming.
Scientists have developed a low-cost, emissions-free device that uses an ordinary AAA battery to produce hydrogen by water electrolysis. The battery sends an electric current through two electrodes that split liquid water into hydrogen and oxygen gas.
Where the river meets the sea, there is the potential to harness a significant amount of renewable energy, according to a team of mechanical engineers. The researchers evaluated an emerging method of power generation, called pressure retarded osmosis, in which two waters of different salinity are mixed to produce energy.
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