Here’s what we’re hearing (some info from news releases):

Kyocera Supplies 2MW of modules for solar power plant in France

Kyocera announced that is has supplied 8 solar modules for a new 2 megawatt solar power plant which sits over four acres of unused farmland in northwestern France. The plant was officially inaugurated on October 21 in Distré, in the French department of Maine-et-Loire. The large-scale installation is a flagship project in terms of sustainability, and the Kyocera solar modules produce an average total power output of 2,200,000-kW/hours per year—equal to the average annual energy consumption of 900 local households. The clean energy power plant will offset roughly 700 tons of CO2 per year.

American Aerogel says New York’s high taxes are forcing relocation consideration

Earlier this year, Jay McHarg, president of the Rochester-based company American Aerogel, received a letter from the Department of Environmental Conservation that made his head spin. The agency was asking McHarg to pay thousands of dollars in fees on hazardous wastewater disposal, a by-product of his company’s production of custom-made packing material. But the fees were not from this year, or even the year before—but from three years ago.

Funding opportunity: SunShot concentrating solar power R&D

DOE has issued a Funding Opportunity Exchange solicitation for proposals to support applied research into technologies that have the potential to dramatically increase efficiency, lower costs, and deliver more reliable performance than existing commercial and near-commercial concentrating solar power systems. This FOE seeks to develop innovative concepts that could lead to performance breakthroughs like improving efficiency and temperature ranges, and demonstrate new approaches in the design of collectors, receivers, and power cycle equipment used in CSP systems.

Corning unveils Corning Lotus Glass for high-performance displays

Corning Inc. announced the commercial launch of Corning Lotus Glass, an environmentally friendly, high-performance display glass developed to enable cutting-edge technologies, including organic light-emitting diode displays and next generation liquid crystal displays. Corning Lotus Glass helps support the demanding manufacturing processes of both OLED and liquid crystal displays for high performance, portable devices such as smart phones, tablets, and notebook computers. Corning Lotus Glass is formulated to perform exceptionally well in low-temperature poly-silicon and oxide thin-film transistor backplane manufacturing environments.

Hydro-Québec and Technifin form partnership to license lithium titanate spinel oxide

Hydro-Québec (Canada) and Technifin (South Africa) have entered into an intellectual property collaboration agreement relating to the licensing of their respective intellectual property in lithium titanate spinel oxide technologies, notably for Li-ion battery applications. The Hydro-Québec/Technifin LTO patents comprise two groups of patent rights affording extensive worldwide protection for LTO technology. The first group, the Technifin patents, cover the basic use in Li-ion cells of the LTO anodes invented in 1994 by Michael Thackeray while at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in South Africa. The second group covers the potential of LTO that was recognized in 1995 by Karim Zaghib at Hydro-Québec’s research institute, IREQ.

Morgan Thermal Ceramics’ Superwool Plus insulating fiber offers up to 20% lower thermal conductivity

Morgan Thermal Ceramics now offers Superwool Plus high temperature fiber insulation. Used for repairing and lining aluminum furnaces, it reduces the frequency of relining operations when compared to the industry standard, and improved insulation efficiency results in decreased operating costs. Also, all Superwool insulating fibers are non-wetting to molten aluminum. This reduces the concerns about metal adherence and penetration into the fibers, which is particularly useful in aluminum smelting and casting operations where molten metal is present.