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Business




Published on April 20th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

Through new collaborations totaling $6.2 million, ORNL will be partnering with industry to overcome challenges facing lithium-ion manufacturing. Partners include A123 Systems, Dow Kokam, Porous Power Technologies and Planar Energy. In each case, industry cost-share exceeds 50 percent of the total project cost. “By leveraging our expertise in materials science and manufacturing, ORNL will assist …

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Business




Published on April 19th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

Despite the global economic recession, solar capacity in the U.S. increased by 37% last year to reach 2108 MW, according to figures from the Solar Energy Industries Association. The annual industry report shows that 2009 was, in fact, a year of strong growth with revenues reaching $4 billion, up 36% on 2008. The growth is …

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Despite the global economic recession, solar capacity in the U.S. increased by 37% last year to reach 2108 MW, according to figures from the Solar Energy Industries Association.

The annual industry report shows that 2009 was, in fact, a year of strong growth with revenues reaching $4 billion, up 36% on 2008.

The growth is being driven mainly by utilities, which tripled their solar photovoltaic capacity from 22 MW to 66 MW. Aggregating all of their solar technologies (e.g., adding in concentrating solar power), utilities have a generating capacity of 17 GW, sufficient to power 3.4 million homes.

Residential photovoltaic installations also showed particular growth, doubling in capacity from 78 MW to 156 MW. Nonresidential installations, however, lagged well behind growing 2% less than last year.

California continues to lead the way with 220 MW in new solar electric capacity, followed by New Jersey, Florida, Arizona, Colorado, Hawaii, New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut and North Carolina.

Despite the strong growth, the U.S. still ranks fourth in newly installed solar electric capacity (481 MW) well behind Germany, a nation that leads the way with a massive 3000 MW increase, followed by Italy and Japan. The total capacity of the U.S. is also well behind Germany’s total of 8877 MW, as well as Spain and Japan.

“We expect 2010 to be a breakout year for the US solar industry,” says SEIA president and CEO Rhone Resch. “The right policies and industry innovation continue to drive solar’s growth across America. Now we’re talking gigawatts of solar, not megawatts.”


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Career




Published on April 19th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

Americans for Energy Leadership has some opportunities for ceramic and materials science students, post docs and young professionals. AEL says it is now accepting applications for the position of “policy fellow” to perform high-level research, development, reporting and advocacy on energy and innovation policy. Full- and part-time positions are available in Washington, D.C. and across …

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Biomaterials




Published on April 19th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

As you can see above, ACerS Fellow Jennifer Lewis and her team at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have figured out how to make intriguing and beautifully simple (yet complex) origami structures by bending and folding planar lattices. The lattices are made by extruding “inks” of ceramic, metal or polymeric materials using a precise, …

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Business




Published on April 17th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

According to a Reuters story, Toyota will launch Prius hybrid minivans using lithium-ion batteries early next year. A lithium-ion battery can pack more electricity than a nickel-metal hydride counterpart, enabling a hybrid car to run longer on a single charge. Toyota plans to keep the price of the new Prius model at a level similar …

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Biomaterials




Published on April 16th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

NIST just announced that it is accepting proposals for its 2010 Technology Innovation Program that will provide $25 million in first-year cost-shared funding for innovative research on “Manufacturing and Biomanufacturing: Materials Advances and Critical Processes.” TIP is NIST’s version of DARPA and ARPA-E, i.e., it seeks to fund high-risk, high-reward research. The competition is open …

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Business




Published on April 16th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

Architects and engineers working at Armstrong American State University in Savannah, Ga., have installed an aesthetically pleasing ceramic water-cooling tower for the school’s student Union and Memorial College Center that they say will provide heating, ventilation and air conditioning for decades. The basic technology behind this system is fairly low tech: Water is sprayed over …

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Ceramic Tech Today




Published on April 16th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

We are all Bill Murray because DOE and NSF still seem to be suffering from the fierce urgency of tomorrow

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Ceramic Tech Today




Published on April 15th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

The DOE just release the names of the 20 teams (some from multiple schools) who will be competing in next year’s Solar Decathlon that will take place in Washington, D.C., in the fall 2011. Every two year, selected teams get an opportunity display some remarkable approaches to energy-efficient construction, appliances and use of novel materials. …

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Ceramic Tech Today




Published on April 15th, 2010 | By: pwray@ceramics.org

Those engineering electronic devices always have had to factor in the use of special materials that can conduct heat away from crucial components. Bulk copper’s thermal conductivity is pretty good at around 400 watts per meter per kelvin, but this ability decreases as the copper approaches film-size dimensions. Diamond has long been known to have …

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