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Archive for the ‘energy’ category: Page 16

May 20, 2021

Novel concrete battery could let buildings store their own energy

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability, transportation

One of the more interesting areas of battery research centers on how these devices can not just store energy, but also double as structural components. We’ve seen some impressive examples of this that could be worked into electric vehicles, and now scientists in Sweden have applied this type of thinking to big buildings, demonstrating a novel type of cement-based battery that could see large structures constructed from functional concrete.

The research was carried out at Chalmers University of Technology, where scientists were working on developing more sustainable building materials, with a particular focus on concrete. As the world’s most widely-used material and one that is very energy intensive to produce, we’re seeing a lot of research into how the carbon footprint of concrete could be reduced, and the authors of this new study have come up with an interesting potential solution.

Like regular concrete, it starts with a cement-based mixture, but one spiked with small amounts of short carbon fibers to add conductivity and flexural strength. Also incorporated into the mix are a pair of carbon fiber meshes, one coated in iron to act as the battery’s anode and the other coated in nickel to act as the cathode. As the battery’s two electrodes, these ferry electrons back and forward as the device is charged and discharged.

May 20, 2021

World’s first supercapacitor-hybrid electric motorcycle will get a chance to prove itself

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability, transportation

Audacious French company Nawa showed off a concept bike in 2019, claiming its supercapacitor-hybrid battery pack could massively boost power and urban range for electric motorcycles. Now, it seems we’ll get a chance to see if the numbers stack up.

We’ve been following Nawa since 2018, when we first spoke to these guys about the potential benefits of using powerful ultracapacitors alongside energy-dense lithium batteries to extend the range and boost the peak power of electric vehicles.

Continue reading “World’s first supercapacitor-hybrid electric motorcycle will get a chance to prove itself” »

May 18, 2021

A Ghostly Solution: Strange Property of the Quantum Realm Enables Efficient Energy Harvesting in Tiny Device

Posted by in categories: energy, quantum physics

Scientists at the University of Colorado Boulder have tapped into a poltergeist-like property of electrons to design devices that can capture excess heat from their environment — and turn it into usable electricity.

The researchers have described their new “optical rectennas” in a paper published today (May 18, 2021) in the journal Nature Communications. These devices, which are too small to see with the naked eye, are roughly 100 times more efficient than similar tools used for energy harvesting. And they achieve that feat through a mysterious process called “resonant tunneling” — in which electrons pass through solid matter without spending any energy.

“They go in like ghosts,” said lead author Amina Belkadi, who recently earned her PhD from the Department of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering (ECEE).

Continue reading “A Ghostly Solution: Strange Property of the Quantum Realm Enables Efficient Energy Harvesting in Tiny Device” »

May 14, 2021

Researchers trace path of light in photosynthesis

Posted by in categories: energy, food

Three billion years ago, light first zipped through chlorophyll within tiny reaction centers, the first step plants and photosynthetic bacteria take to convert light into food.

Heliobacteria, a type of bacteria that uses photosynthesis to generate energy, has reaction centers thought to be similar to those of the common ancestors for all photosynthetic organisms. Now, a University of Michigan team has determined the first steps in converting into energy for this bacterium.

“Our study highlights the different ways in which nature has made use of the basic reaction center architecture that emerged over 3 billion years ago,” said lead author and U-M physicist Jennifer Ogilvie. “We want to ultimately understand how energy moves through the system and ends up creating what we call the ‘charge-separated state.’ This state is the battery that drives the engine of photosynthesis.”

May 12, 2021

Gasoline Buying Fever Rages as Pipeline Company Begins Restart

Posted by in category: energy

While drivers scrambled for fuel, Colonial Pipeline said supplies would resume flowing from Texas to the East Coast in the coming days.

May 12, 2021

Samsung’s new PixCell LED headlamp uses ISOCELL-like pixel isolation tech

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

Samsung has detailed its next-gen LED module for intelligent headlights, PixCell LED, in a fresh official introduction video. In Samsung’s own words, PixCell LED is the perfect solution for energy efficient lamps fit for the sleek and stylish vehicles of the future. It’s an Adaptive Driving Beam (ADB) solution that leverages Samsung’s advanced semiconductor technology to improve upon the ADB concept in several ways. More so, PixCell LED is a product that strengthens the Korean tech giant’s ambitions of becoming a bigger component of the automotive market and its supply chain.

It sounds a lot like PixCell LED uses technologies similar to ISOCELL, or at least it relies on principles that have been used by Samsung’s mobile camera division for many years. The new LED headlamp uses what Samsung calls Silicon Wall technology to create a solid wall structure between pixels. Isolating each pixel allows for more refined light control, which is what ADB is mostly about.

Continue reading “Samsung’s new PixCell LED headlamp uses ISOCELL-like pixel isolation tech” »

May 10, 2021

3D Printing ‘Artificial Leaves’ Could Solve Our Energy Problem on Mars /

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, energy, space

Microalgae 3D printed onto bacterial cellulose allows for a new oxygen-producing material.

May 10, 2021

Airbus pioneers a superconducting powertrain cooled by liquid hydrogen

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

Long-haul aviation, like everything else in the human world, needs to be totally decarbonized, and in the race to zero emissions for international airliners, liquid-hydrogen powertrains look like one of the only viable possibilities.


Airbus is working on a number of hydrogen-powered aircraft, and it’s just found a new angle on cryogenic liquid H2 fuel: using it to supercool the powertrain down to superconducting temperatures, possibly unlocking huge weight and efficiency savings.

Continue reading “Airbus pioneers a superconducting powertrain cooled by liquid hydrogen” »

May 10, 2021

Hydrogen combustion, explained

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

Circa 2020


Today’s internal combustion engines in aircraft can be modified to run on alternative fuels for improved environmental performance. Now, hydrogen combustion—either via gas or liquid—is emerging as one of the most promising options in this respect. Airbus is exploring the technology’s potential in preparation for its zero-emission aircraft programme.

May 9, 2021

The Colonial Pipeline Hack Is a New Extreme for Ransomware

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, energy

An attack has crippled the company’s operations—and cut off a large portion of the East Coast’s fuel supply—in an ominous development for critical infrastructure.

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