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Archive for the ‘energy’ category: Page 104

Sep 18, 2015

Tesla’s Powerwall home battery is coming to Australia in 2015

Posted by in categories: business, energy, transportation

The Powerwall, a rechargeable lithium ion home battery from the makers of the Tesla Model S car, will be on sale in Australia by the end of the year.

Powerwall will be available in Australia in late 2015 through a variety of Tesla Energy partners who are yet to be announced, Business Insider reported.

See also: All hail Apple’s new iOS 9 font, San Francisco.

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Sep 14, 2015

World’s first all-electric propulsion satellite goes on line

Posted by in categories: energy, space travel

Boeing has announced that the first satellite with all-electric propulsion is now fully operational. Launched last March, the ABS-3A 702SP (small platform) satellite was formally handed over to its owner, Bermuda-based telecommunications company ABS, on August 31. It will provide communications services to the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

ABS-3A launched on March 1 atop a Falcon 9 rocket from SpaceX’s Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida along with EUTELSAT 115 West B. The geosynchronous comsat’s key technology is its Xenon Ion Propulsion System (XIPS). Previously, hybrid systems that use a mix of chemical and ion propellants have been sent into orbit, but this is the first time a satellite has been deployed with an all-electric drive.

Boeing says that the technology is based on 210,000 hours of ion propulsion flight experience and is 10 times more efficient than liquid-fueled rockets. Four 25-cm (9.8-in) thrusters using xenon as a propellant allow the 702SP satellite to maintain stationkeeping while using only 5 kg (11 lb) of fuel per year. This is a great saving because the satellite needs less fuel and smaller thrusters, which reduces launch costs.

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Sep 13, 2015

3D Printed Solar Cells Could Provide 1.3 Billion People with Electricity

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, energy, solar power, sustainability

Solar power has been gaining more and more popularity worldwide since the efficiency of solar panels has significantly increased during the recent years, along with the dramatic decrease in the costs. However, its popularity is not only due its affordability to a wider audience but also to the growing awareness about the benefits of clean sources of energy. Yet, the costs of transportation and production often make it extremely difficult to implement solar technology in developing countries. Printed solar cells could offer a solution to this problem.

Thanks to the advances in printed solar cell technology during the past few years, its energy efficiency has increased from 3% to 20%.

Its success is due to its cost-effectiveness and simplicity. A 10×10 cm solar cell film is enough to generate as much as 10–50 watts per square meter,” said Scott Watkins from the Korean company Kyung-In Synthetic.

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Sep 13, 2015

No More Air Conditioners: This “Skin” For Buildings Keeps The Inside Cool With Zero Energy

Posted by in category: energy

The facade works with no power at all—not even solar panels—and keeps the temperature comfortable and light bright inside.

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Sep 12, 2015

How curly nanowires can absorb more light to power nanoscale electronic circuits

Posted by in categories: electronics, energy, materials, nanotechnology, solar power, sustainability

This illustration shows a prototype device comprising bare nanospring photodetectors placed on a glass substrate, with metal contacts to collect charges (credit: Tural Khudiyev and Mehmet Bayindir/Applied Optics)

Researchers from Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey, have shown that twisting straight nanowires into springs can increase the amount of light the wires absorb by up to 23 percent. Absorbing more light is important because one application of nanowires is turning light into electricity, for example, to power tiny sensors instead of requiring batteries.

If nanowires are made from a semiconductor like silicon, light striking the wire will dislodge electrons from the crystal lattice, leaving positively charged “holes” behind. Both the electrons and the holes move through the material to generate electricity. The more light the wire absorbs; the more electricity it generates. (A device that converts light into electricity can function as either a solar cell or a photosensor.)

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Sep 11, 2015

We’re getting closer to space-based solar panels that could beam unlimited energy to Earth

Posted by in categories: energy, space

Scientists call it “stellar energy.”

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Sep 11, 2015

Skyscraper Farms, Lab-grown Meat & Soylent — Meeting the needs of the 21st Century

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, energy, existential risks, food, sustainability

Meeting the basic needs of humanity is increasingly brought into question as we begin to resemble a cancer to the living organism we inhabit. As mass extinction continues to become an omnipotent reality, it’s apparent that more humans equals more problems. To fix this, we have to approach them in the same way farmers do: with resiliency. Farmers try to nurture their crops and hope for the right season. Although, even the predictability of spring, summer and fall’s outcome can be misleading. Nature has a way of leading things in the exact opposite direction than they seem to be headed. And it is those who’ve treaded, but still embark that truly encounter the rewards. For if farmers were to give up after an adverse season, there’d be no food next year. There’d be no continuity of supply for society. There’d be no method of feeding the hungry. No solution to ease the growing population and its rising demands.

So, with exponential gain in human births this century, how do we combat such problems? One possible solution is to build “green skyscrapers” for the sole purpose of farming, where we are able to control the environment and have multiple levels of plant growth. This could be done by utilizing an array of mirrors to redirect sunlight to every floor, while supplementing with multi-spectral, energy-efficient LED’s. With advanced humidity control and water-recycling techniques, we’d contribute towards the global conservation of water and open up valuable land to reforestation — all through subjugating the unpredictability of nature. This ensures the utmost quality and care goes into producing local, high-quality food, with the added benefit of honing the technology needed for interplanetary colonization.

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Sep 9, 2015

Scientists built the most powerful physics machine on earth to study the fate of our universe, and it may break the laws of physics

Posted by in categories: energy, particle physics

Right now, the most powerful physics machine ever constructed by man is running at maximum power after a major upgrade that took two years to complete.

And recently, two different experiments reported that they may have discovered a particle that behaves in ways that cannot be explained with any existing physical laws, as Scientific American reports.

Shown below is one of four major detectors that are crucial to the machine’s purpose:

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Sep 8, 2015

Intel 6th generation core processor for triple battery life and 2.5 times better performance

Posted by in categories: computing, energy

Intel Corporation introduced the 6th Generation Intel® Core™ processor family, the company’s best processors ever. The launch marks a turning point in people’s relationship with computers. The 6th Gen Intel Core processors deliver enhanced performance and new immersive experiences at the lowest power levels ever and also support the broadest range of device designs – from the ultra-mobile compute stick, to 2 in 1s and huge high-definition All-in-One desktops, to new mobile workstations.

There are over 500 million computers in use today that are four to five years old or older. They are slow to wake, their batteries don’t last long, and they can’t take advantage of all the new experiences available today.

Built on the new Skylake microarchitecture on Intel’s leading 14nm manufacturing process technology.

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Sep 5, 2015

Apple patents fuel cell battery for iPhones and Macbooks

Posted by in category: energy

California Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has filed a patent application for a fuel cell system that could power a MacBook or an iPhone “for days or even weeks without refueling”. With batteries dying fast around the world the technology industry hasn’t been able to solve the problem entirely. But now the bitten fruit company has given the first step into what seems to be the cutting edge generation of battery design.

After the U.K based company, Intelligent Energy revealed an iPhone version packed with a prototype hydrogen fuel cell that would last for a week before needing to be charged, rumors began to resonate about close colaboration with Apple to include such technologies in their own products. And as it turns out, the patent presented by Apple in March confirms exactly that. However, this controversial fuel cells will need to be replaced once they have depleted.

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