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Apr 9, 2021

Perseverance captured video of Ingenuity Mars Helicopter rotor blades spinning test

Posted by in categories: energy, space

On April 9, 2021 NASA demonstrated video footage on Mars Helicopter Ingenuity during rotor blades spinning test and HI-RES first image from Ingenuity. Launch day of Ingenuity Perseverance Mars Rover sent images of Ingenuity Helicopter’s rotor blades spin up within motor test. Ingenuity is going to fly on Mars on April 11–12. Rotor blades spinned up and are unlocked and helicopter is going to make high-rpm test. So next milestone is to spin up rotor blades full-speed for the first time on Mars (to the planned flight speed of ~2400 RPM) while still on the surface. Flight can’t happen too late in the Martian day either. A long flight late in the afternoon could deplete the battery without giving the Sun a chance to recharge it. You don’t want to go into that cold Martian night without a good bit of energy in the battery!

Credit: nasa.gov, NASA/JPL-Caltech, NASA/JPL-Caltech/ASU

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Apr 9, 2021

Amazon warns Texas: Don’t pass bill that would drive up wind power costs

Posted by in categories: energy, finance, sustainability

If the bill passes, it would “unfairly shift the cost of ancillary electric services exclusively onto renewable generators rather than all the beneficiaries,” according to a letter written by the Partnership for Renewable Energy Finance (PREF), an industry group, and signed by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Goldman Sachs, and a number of other firms.


Bill would “directly assign” grid stability costs to renewable power providers.

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Apr 8, 2021

What’s So Great About Brushless Motors?

Posted by in category: energy

These more efficient and durable power tools are invading the DIY market. So how do they work?


Lately there has been a lot of talk in the power tool world about brushless motors. While the technology isn’t new to tools, it has recently gained traction due to some high-profile releases by Makita, Milwaukee, DeWalt, and others.

“Brushless motors have been around since the 1960s, being used in industrial and manufacturing applications for [motors that drive] conveyor belts,” says Christian Coulis, cordless product manager for Milwaukee Tools. However, Makita was the first company to use them in power tools. “[It was] first in our assembly division in 2003 for the defense and aerospace industries,” says Wayne Hart, Makita’s communications manager, “and then again in 2009 when we released a brushless three-speed impact driver.”

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Apr 8, 2021

Segway announces ultra-futuristic Apex H2 hydrogen-powered motorcycle

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

Segway-Ninebot has rather sensationally announced that it’s building a hydrogen fuel cell sportsbike – and boy does this thing look like it glitched its way out of Cyberpunk 2077, complete with a highly improbable steering design and an amazing price.

Here’s what we know so far: Segway has been playing with performance bikes a little bit lately to go with its lineup of cheap electric scooters, mainly sold in China. The Apex was announced in 2019, a slightly gawky looking battery-electric “super scooter” capable of 125 mph (200 km/h), with full sportsbike fairings.

Now, there’s an Apex H2 coming, which will run a hydrogen-electric hybrid powertrain – gaseous hydrogen stored in tanks will be converted into electrical energy through a fuel cell and fed into a buffer battery, which will power an electric motor that drives the rear wheel in some way or another – we can’t see whether there’s a chain drive or a hub motor or what indeed is going on in these renders. Yes, that’s an exhaust port in front of the rear wheel, but all that’ll be coming out of it is water vapor.

Apr 4, 2021

The Fossil Fuel Industry Used Deception To Conceal Damage To BIPOC — NAACP Report

Posted by in categories: energy, finance, health, sustainability

30 Pieces of silver for the masses.


The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) just published a report titled Fossil Fuel Foolery, which identified 10 tactics that the fossil fuel industry used as excuses for not accepting accountability for its impacts on the environment and human health. DesmogBlog noted that the industry used a long list of deceptive tactics that concealed environmental destruction harming Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) as well as low-income communities. Not surprising — the fossil fuel industry only cares about money, and if the planet and human health stand in the way of that, so be it.

The article gave a snapshot of the report findings, and one of the most disturbing things I took notice of was the common tactic that the NAACP described as “co-opt community leaders and organizations and misrepresent the interests and opinions of communities,” sometimes with financial support, to “neutralize or weaken public opposition.”

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Apr 4, 2021

New water vapor condenser takes cues from darkling beetle

Posted by in category: energy

Access to clean water is a huge issue across the globe. Even in areas with water resources, a lack of infrastructure or reliable energy means purifying that water is sometimes extremely difficult.

That’s why a vapor designed by University at Buffalo and University of Wisconsin-Madison engineers could be revolutionary. Unlike other radiative vapor condensers which can only operate at night, the new design works in direct sunlight and requires no energy input.

“We have worked on solar-driven water evaporation technologies in the past years,” says Qiaoqiang Gan, Ph.D., professor of electrical engineering at UB and a leading corresponding author. “We are now addressing the second half of the water cycle, condensation.”

Apr 2, 2021

Breaking ultrawide-bandgap semiconductor records is just like baking bread

Posted by in categories: energy, materials

Researchers have made unparalleled ultrawide-bandgap semiconductors through temperature and timing, just like baking bread.

Alloying, the process of mixing metals in different ratios, has been a known method for creating materials with enhanced properties for thousands of years, ever since copper and tin were combined to form the much harder bronze. Despite its age, this technology remains at the heart of modern electronics and optics industries. Semiconducting alloys, for instance, can be engineered to optimize a device’s electrical, mechanical and optical properties.

Alloys of oxygen with group III elements, such as aluminum, gallium, and indium, are important semiconductor materials with vast applications in high-power electronics, solar-blind photodetectors and transparent devices. The defining property of a semiconductor is its bandgap, a barrier over which only electrons with the required energy can pass. Beta-phase aluminum gallium oxides are notable because of their relatively large bandgap, but most III-O alloys are expensive to make and of unsatisfactory quality.

Apr 2, 2021

US fossil-fuel companies took billions in tax breaks – and then laid off thousands

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, economics, energy

“Last year’s stimulus was about keeping the economy going, but these companies didn’t use these resources to retain their workers. These are companies that are polluting the environment, increasing the deadliness of the pandemic and letting go of their workers.”


Figures show 77 companies received $8.2bn under tax changes related to Covid relief and yet almost every one let workers go.

Apr 1, 2021

Self Contained Ion Powered Aircraft Charlene Model Outdoors

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

This is the only solely ion propelled series of aircrafts that can lift their power supplies against earth’s gravity. These prototypes were patented specifically for lifting their onboard power supplies and the widely published patent has been in effect since 2014.

While the craft wasn’t working at full power for this test footage since their was a power loss, the safety tether still went completely loose when the craft was energized, and it is also shown flying outdoors. There is an indoor flight that lasted for almost 2 minutes continually when it was flying at its best. There is a video of that and other sustained flights on this YouTube channel.

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Mar 30, 2021

The Jackery Explorer 1500 Solar Generator Enables Exciting New Possibilities

Posted by in category: energy

The renewable energy experts at Jackery are up to their usual tricks and announced a new line of solar generator products on Jackery Day that open up a completely new range of possibilities.

They sent us their Solar Generator 1500 with two of their slick 100 watt folding Solar Saga panels to run through the paces. On paper, the new Jackery Explorer 1500 Portable Power Station battery was impressive, with its massive 1.5kWh capacity and increased power output capabilities.

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