International

Are CFLs already obsolete?

By RussJordan / May 19, 2009

Warner Philips, founder of Lemnis Lighting Co. in The Netherlands, claims “CFLs are officially an outdated technology. You can’t recycle CFLs. You can’t get a fully dimmable product. That should make them obsolete.” This is quite a statement, considering compact fluorescent lamps are just now beginning to replace incandescent lamps. Philips makes this bold statement…

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1,800 year-old glass bowl found intact

By / May 1, 2009

British officials say archeologists unearthed a Roman glass bowl at an ancient London cemetery that they believes dates from around the 2nd to 3rd century A.D. The bowl is actually a mosaic of hundreds of indented blue petals with white bordering. Unfortunately, according to a Reuters report, the bowl was bright red when it was…

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Earth Day Ceramics Video Festival

By / April 22, 2009

Hey – it’s Video of the Week Day (Wednesday) and Earth Day. What a great excuse for a video festival. The easy thing would have been to go for videos that show the role in ceramics and glass in solar power, solar thermal, fuel cells, piezoelectrics, fusion, ultracapacitors and so on, but I’ve decided to…

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Poneman nominated for DOE Deputy Secretary

By / April 15, 2009

Yesterday, the Obama administration announced that Daniel B. Poneman has been nominated to be a deputy secretary for the DOE. Poneman isn’t a scientist, and his background is decidedly policy oriented, especially in the areas of arms control, nuclear proliferation and export controls. I really don’t know much about him. At first glance, he seems…

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U.S. installed solar capacity up 16%

By / April 6, 2009

A new solar industry organization publication reports that total solar capacity (electric power plus water, pool and space heating) in the United States grew by 1,265 megawatts in 2008, an increase of 16 percent to a total capacity 9,183 MW. The Solar Energy Industry Association’s Year in Review also notes that even though no new…

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World demand for refractories forecast to rise 3.5% annually through 2012 to 45.2 million metric tons

By / April 3, 2009

A new report by an industry research firm predicts that there will be a small but steady growth in world demand for refractories through 2012, averaging 3.5 percent annually or 4.5 percent based on anticipated price increases. The Freedonia Group, a Cleveland, Ohio based research firm pegs the 2012 total market value of refractories at…

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Budget good news for fusion effort

By / April 3, 2009

The FY 2009 federal budget bill, at last, ends what has been something of an embarrassment and point of anger and pessimism with the U.S. scientific community by containing significant funding for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor project. This is great news for the international project and for the Oak Ridge National Laboratory employees who…

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Can a nuclear fuel “lease” system aid the growth of nuclear power?

By / April 1, 2009

For those who still see a “Nuclear Renaissance” in the world’s energy future, the Russian Federation’s and the United State’s respective national academies of sciences have a proposal that is akin to pruning a bush in order to make it flourish: Provide to those nations that want to use it a stable – but tightly…

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New hydrogen economy book available

By / March 30, 2009

The American Ceramic Society has just published a book on one of the most vibrant areas of energy research and development: Materials Innovations in an Emerging Hydrogen Economy (Ceramic Transactions Volume 202), edited by George Wicks and Jack Simon. The book is a collection of new papers presented at the 2008 Materials Innovations in an…

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MS&T conference to feature new symposium on materials and electric/magnetic fields

By / March 12, 2009

In recent years, the Materials Science & Technology conference has become the broadest materials-oriented meeting in the United States. The 2009 MS&T conference – to be held Oct. 25-29 in Pittsburgh – will feature a novel symposium organized by Rishi Raj, with assistance from Rustum Roy and Dinesh Agrawal. Guest blogger Raj provides the following…

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