‘Wetting’ the Appetite of a Battery for Renewable Energy Storage

New liquid alloy electrode improves sodium-beta battery performance Sun, wind and other renewable energy sources could make up a larger portion of the electricity America consumes if better batteries could be built to store the intermittent energy for cloudy, windless days. Now a new material could allow more utilities to store large amounts of renewable energy and make the nation’s power system more reliable and resilient. A paper published today in Nature Communications describes an electrode made of a liquid metal alloy…

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Conventions: Energy Harvesting & Storage USA; November 19 – 20

Upcoming energy conventions. News from Energy Harvesting & Storage: Register by Friday, June 6, 2014 for our biggest attendee discount – 50% – www.EnergyHarvestingUSA.com/Register Located back in California at the Santa Clara Convention Center, this growing event – which increased by over 20% in 2013 – will encompass the commercialization and progress of energy harvesting and associated technologies. Learn from world class speakers about the latest technology progress on Wireless Sensor Networks and Energy Harvesting in all forms – Energy…

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Reducing Emissions the Primary Way to Fight Climate Change Reports UCLA-Led Study

Climate engineering won’t sufficiently stem global warming Forget about positioning giant mirrors in space to reduce the amount of sunlight being trapped in the earth’s atmosphere or seeding clouds to reduce the amount of light entering earth’s atmosphere. Those approaches to climate engineering aren’t likely to be effective or practical in slowing global warming. A new report by professors from UCLA and five other universities concludes that there’s no way around it: We have to cut down the amount of…

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Internal Wall Insulation Could Save You and Your Family Up to £460 Per Year

How to Save on Your Energy Bills The recent hike in energy prices has left many families struggling to keep up with inflated rates for gas and electricity. In extreme cases, people are being forced to choose between eating and heating, as the ‘big six’ energy companies dominate the UK energy market and take their cues from each other when it comes to increasing prices. Whether you’re looking to save on your energy bills or do your bit to protect…

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Guest Post: The Trend of Sustainability & Businesses Creating an Impact

I would like to thank Kenny Myers for this guest contribution about the trend toward sustainability. – GM According to some so-called experts, green building and sustainable technologies are nothing more than a fad and fossil fuels will undoubtedly make a return. However, it’s hard to believe that rhetoric when so many businesses and homeowners are taking part in creating an energy conscious connection. In April of 2014, Marriott International, Inc. announced that it has created its first LEED certified hotel…

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Nanowires Provide Great Potential for Better Solar Cells

Better solar cells, better LED light and vast optical possibilities Changes at the atom level in nanowires offer vast possibilities for improvement of solar cells and LED light. NTNU-researchers have discovered that by tuning a small strain on single nanowires they can become more effective in LEDs and solar cells. NTNU researchers Dheeraj Dasa and Helge Weman have, in cooperation with IBM, discovered that gallium arsenide can be tuned with a small strain to function efficiently as a single light-emitting…

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School for Solar Announced by CBD Energy Limited

In an exciting new project, diversified renewable energy company, CBD Energy Limited is investing in the development and installation of a programme of solar projects across the UK, through its wholly owned UK subsidiary, Secured Energy Bonds plc (SEB). SEB plans to install solar panels for a number of UK businesses (at no cost to the businesses), and to derive income from the Feed-in Tariffs paid by the UK government to green electricity generators. This is a win-win situation for…

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Quote of Note

“If you believe the economy is more important than the environment, try holding your breath while you count your money.” Janez Potocnik The European Commissioner for Environment

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Guest Post: How You Can Make Your Home Breathe Better

On the surface, some homes are deceptively clean-looking, with visible vacuum cleaner lines running down the carpeting, and the smell of household cleaners fumigating the air. However, there are many hidden health hazards that can lurk in air filters, air ducts, carpet fibers, fans and more that can make breathing very difficult. Replace Air Filters: It’s recommended by most HVAC contractors that air conditioning filters be changed at least once a month. In a short amount of time, air filters…

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Solar Power: Idea to Reality to the Future

Thanks to David Glenn for providing this thoughtful article on solar power. Energy is expensive. Thanks to the laws of thermodynamics, it’s just not possible to get more energy out of a system than you put in. Thus, when it comes to generating power, you’ll always be stuck with a bad investment. However, there is a bit of a work around to this problem. See, if you can get someone or something else to supply the initial energy for you,…

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Guest Post: 7 Benefits of Using LED Bulbs

As compared to traditional lighting, light emitting diodes (LEDs) have been getting a lot of publicity for the benefits and advantages as far as energy efficiency goes. LED lighting is by far smartest solution as well as the most power saving compared to other illumination methods available in the industry. The LED revolution is a similar technology step up as going from analog to digital. This is why we at 1lightbulbs.com are passionate about LEDs and offer a vast selection…

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Guest Post: Green Construction Trends

The Green movement has reached the construction trade. From affordable public housing that has adopted green construction methods — such as ergonomically designed furniture in common areas and the use of sustainable, renewable building materials — to the use of green building standards throughout the country, construction companies are embracing the opportunity to construct eco-friendly buildings. The need for green construction has been aided by a study that found that buildings in Europe use 8 percent more energy than industry…

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Denmark and Stanford Researchers Produce Industrial Quantities of Hydrogen without Emitting Carbon into Atmosphere

The following story, written by Tom Abate, comes from Stanford Engineering. University researchers from two continents have engineered an efficient and environmentally friendly catalyst for the production of molecular hydrogen (H2), a compound used extensively in modern industry to manufacture fertilizer and refine crude oil into gasoline. Although hydrogen is an abundant element, it is generally not found as the pure gas H2 but is generally bound to oxygen in water (H2O) or to carbon in methane (CH4), the primary…

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Organic Farms Support More Species

On average, organic farms support 34% more plant, insect and animal species than conventional farms, say Oxford University scientists. Researchers looked at data going back thirty years and found that this effect has remained stable over time and shows no signs of decreasing. ‘Our study has shown that organic farming, as an alternative to conventional farming, can yield significant long-term benefits for biodiversity,’ said Sean Tuck of Oxford University’s Department of Plant Sciences, lead author of the study. ‘Organic methods…

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Graphene-based solar cell hits record 15.6 percent efficiency

“Low-Temperature Processed Electron Collection Layers of Graphene/TiO2 Nanocomposites in Thin Film Perovskite Solar Cells “The highest efficiencies in solution-processable perovskite-based solar cells have been achieved using an electron collection layer that requires sintering at 500 °C. This is unfavorable for low-cost production, applications on plastic substrates, and multijunction device architectures. Here we report a low-cost, solution-based deposition procedure utilizing nanocomposites of graphene and TiO2 nanoparticles as the electron collection layers in meso-superstructured perovskite solar cells. The graphene nanoflakes provide superior charge-collection in…

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Guest Post: How To Build Your Own Solar Panels

Thanks to Agnes Jimenez, for providing this post on how to build your own solar panels. There is no second opinion about the enormous benefits of solar electricity. With the ever rising prices of fuel and hence the on-grid electricity, the only viable option we are left with is to switch to the off-grid solar photovoltaic electricity for our household needs. As much attractive as it seems, the price of solar panels is one of the major reasons why people…

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Bio-based solar cell

RUB researchers generate solar electricity rather than biomass with photosynthetic proteins Efficient integration of photosystems 1 and 2 into photovoltaic cell Researchers at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB) have developed a bio-based solar cell. They embedded the two proteins photosystem 1 and 2, which in plants are responsible of photosynthesis, into complex molecules developed in-house, thus creating an efficient electron current. Headed by Prof Dr Wolfgang Schuhmann from the Department of Analytical Chemistry and Center for Electrochemical Sciences (CES) and Prof…

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