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Published on December 2nd, 2015 | By: April Gocha, PhD

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Other materials stories that may be of interest

Published on December 2nd, 2015 | By: April Gocha, PhD

[Image above] Credit: NIST

 

US could cut per capita greenhouse emissions 90% by 2050

A new study shows in detail that it is technologically and economically feasible for the United States to sharply reduce greenhouse gas emissions in line with the international goal of limiting global warming. The report says it is possible to revamp the energy system in a way that reduces per capita carbon dioxide emissions from 17 tons per person currently to 1.7 tons in 2050, while still providing all the services people expect.

 

Storing solar energy underground for a cloudy day

A new study shows that wind, water, and solar generators can theoretically result in a reliable, affordable national grid when the generators are combined with inexpensive storage. Over the last few years, researchers have produced a series of plans, based on huge amounts of data churned through computer models, showing how each state in America could shift from fossil fuel to entirely renewable energy.

 

NTU smart chip tells you how healthy your battery is

Scientists from Nanyang Technological University have developed a smart chip that can tell you how healthy is your battery and if it is safe for use. The smart chip is small enough to be embedded in almost all batteries, from the small batteries in mobile devices to the huge power packs found in electric vehicles and advanced aeroplanes. Embedded in the smart chip is a proprietary algorithm based on electrochemical thermodynamics measurements.

 

Tandem solar cells are simply better

Stacking two solar cells one over the other has advantages: Because the energy is “harvested” in two stages, and overall the sunlight can be converted to electricity more efficiently. Empa researchers have come up with a procedure that makes it possible to produce thin film tandem solar cells in which a thin perovskite layer is used. The processing of perovskite takes place at just 50 °C and such a process is potentially applicable for low cost roll-to-roll production in future.

 

Better batteries to beat global warming: A race against time

One of the key technologies that could help wean the globe off fossil fuel is probably at your fingertips or in your pocket right now: the battery. If batteries can get better, cheaper and store more power safely, then electric cars and solar- or wind- powered homes become more viable—even on cloudy days or when the wind isn’t blowing.

 

Atom-sized craters make a catalyst much more active

Bombarding and stretching an important industrial catalyst opens up tiny holes on its surface where atoms can attach and react, according to a study by scientists at Stanford University and the SLAC National Accelerator Lab. In the new approach, researchers bombarded a sheet of molybdenum disulfide with argon atoms, creating holes surrounded by dangling bonds. The spacing of the atoms changed in a way that made the holes much more chemically reactive.

 


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