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Oct 9, 2020

New Reactor Design Could Produce First Ever Energy-Positive Fusion Reaction

Posted by in categories: energy, physics

Could this be the energy source of the future?


The secret to the SPARC reactor is that its magnets will be built from new high-temperature superconductors that require much less cooling and can produce far more powerful magnetic fields. That means the reactor can be ten times more compact than ITER while achieving similar performance.

As with any cutting-edge technology, converting principles into practice is no simple matter. But the analysis detailed in the papers suggests that the reactor will achieve its goal of producing more energy than it sucks up. So far, all fusion experiments have required more energy to heat the plasma and sustain it than has been generated by the reaction itself.

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Oct 8, 2020

Why this space age airplane could change flying forever

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

Airbus’s plan to bring to market a zero-emission passenger aircraft by 2035 means it needs to start plotting a course in terms of technology in 2025. In fact it needs to plot several courses.


It looks like something out of “Star Trek,” and runs on a fuel experts once thought “crazy,” but Airbus hopes that in 15 years we’ll be flying into a greener future aboard this new zero-emission aircraft concept.

Oct 7, 2020

UK Pledges to Get 100% of Residential Power From Wind Turbines

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability, transportation

Ramping Up

Johnson announced that the U.K. would invest about £160 million ($207 million) that will go toward factories that would develop new turbines as well as floating offshore turbines themselves. In order to power every home in the U.K., those turbines would need to generate about 40 GW of power, Engadget reports. That’s four times the nation’s current wind energy output.

“Your kettle, your washing machine, your cooker, your heating, your plug-in electric vehicle, the whole lot of them will get their juice cleanly and without guilt from the breezes that blow around these islands,” Johnson announced at the U.K. Conservative party conference.

Oct 7, 2020

Urine turned into hydrogen fuel

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

Circa 2009


Whizz electrocatalyst frees the hydrogen from ‘liquid gold’

US researchers have developed an efficient way of producing hydrogen from urine — a feat that could not only fuel the cars of the future, but could also help clean up municipal wastewater.

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Oct 7, 2020

“World’s fastest electrodes” triple the density of lithium batteries

Posted by in categories: energy, nanotechnology

French company Nawa technologies says it’s already in production on a new electrode design that can radically boost the performance of existing and future battery chemistries, delivering up to 3x the energy density, 10x the power, vastly faster charging and battery lifespans up to five times as long.

Nawa is already known for its work in the ultracapacitor market, and the company has announced that the same high-tech electrodes it uses on those ultracapacitors can be adapted for current-gen lithium-ion batteries, among others, to realize some tremendous, game-changing benefits.

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Oct 7, 2020

Toyota Announces Hydrogen-Powered Semi Truck

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

The Japanese carmaker’s North America division will be partnering with Hino USA, a commercial vehicles manufacturer, to produce the “heavy” Class 8 fuel cell truck specifically for the North American market.

The truck itself will be based on the existing Hino XL Series chassis and powered by Toyota’s fuel cell technology.

Toyota is planning to show off the first demonstration vehicle in the first half of 2021, but we still know little about it. The prototype of a prior initiative called Project Portal 2.0 may provide some clues: revealed in 2018, the prototype was a 670 horsepower semi with 1,325 pound-feet of torque and a towing capacity of 80,000 pounds. Its fuel cells gave it a reported range of 300 miles, CNET reports.

Oct 6, 2020

We are approaching the fastest, deepest, most consequential technological disruption in history

Posted by in categories: economics, energy, food, governance, sex, transportation

The next decade is going to be a transforming decade as many many technologies (some of which we all like to share in this group) are converging and maturing enough to rearrange our society in almost any aspect we can conceive.

I’m calling to those who are interested in creating and implementing an alternative model for the current social and governance systems, let’s build an open state that we can all support and trust regardless of our age, sex, geographical location, or belief system.

In the next 10 years, key technologies will converge to completely disrupt the five foundational sectors—information, energy, food, transportation, and materials—that underpin our global economy. We need to make sure the disruption benefits everyone.

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Oct 5, 2020

Was the moon magnetized by impact plasmas?

Posted by in categories: energy, space

The crusts of the Moon, Mercury, and many meteorite parent bodies are magnetized. Although the magnetizing field is commonly attributed to that of an ancient core dynamo, a longstanding hypothesized alternative is amplification of the interplanetary magnetic field and induced crustal field by plasmas generated by meteoroid impacts. Here, we use magnetohydrodynamic and impact simulations and analytic relationships to demonstrate that although impact plasmas can transiently enhance the field inside the Moon, the resulting fields are at least three orders of magnitude too weak to explain lunar crustal magnetic anomalies. This leaves a core dynamo as the only plausible source of most magnetization on the Moon.

The Moon presently lacks a core dynamo magnetic field. However, it has been known since the Apollo era that the lunar crust contains remanent magnetization, with localized surface fields reaching up to hundreds of nanoteslas or higher and spanning up to hundreds of kilometers (1). Magnetic studies of Apollo samples and the lunar crust indicate that the magnetizing field likely reached tens of microteslas before 3.56 billion years (Ga) ago (1, 2). The origin of the strongest lunar crustal anomalies and the source of the field that magnetized them have been longstanding mysteries.

Although magnetic fields in rocky bodies are commonly explained by convective dynamos in their metallic cores, a convective dynamo on the Moon may not have had sufficient energy to produce the strongest implied surface paleofields (3, 4). This may imply that a fundamentally different nonconvective dynamo mechanism operated in the Moon or that a process other than a core dynamo produced such magnetization.

Oct 5, 2020

World’s first direct observation of the magneto-Thomson effect

Posted by in categories: energy, physics

Applying a temperature gradient and a charge current to an electrical conductor leads to the release and absorbtion of heat. This is called the Thomson effect. In a first, NIMS and AIST have directly observing the magneto-Thomson effect, which is the magnetic-field-induced modulation of the Thomson effect. This success may contribute to the development of new functions and technologies for thermal energy management and to advances in fundamental physics and materials science on magneto-thermoelectric conversion.

The Seebeck effect and the Peltier effect have been extensively investigated for their application to thermoelectric conversion technologies. Along with these effects, the Thomson effect has long been known as a fundamental thermoelectric effect in metals and semiconductors. Although the influence of magnetic fields and magnetism on the Seebeck and Peltier effects has been well understood as a result of many years of research, the influence on the Thomson effect has not been clarified because it is difficult to measure and evaluate.

This NIMS-led research team observed heat release and absorption induced in an electrical conductor by simultaneously creating a temperature gradient across it, passing a charge current through the gradient, and applying a magnetic field. The team precisely measured temperature changes in the conductor associated with the heat release and absorption using a heat detection technique called lock-in thermography. As a result, the amount of heat released and absorbed was found to be proportional to both the magnitude of the temperature gradient and charge current. In addition, the team observed strong enhancement of the resultant temperature change when a magnetic field was applied to the conductor. The systematic measurements performed in this study demonstrated that the heat release and absorption signals detected under a magnetic field were indeed generated by the magneto-Thomson effect.

Oct 2, 2020

Huge Machine Captures Energy From Ocean Waves

Posted by in category: energy

Turbulent Past

Several companies and teams of scientists have tried to make wave energy a reality in the past, but as Greentech notes, many of their projects fell apart or ran out of money. But with renewed interest — and funding — in the industry, more companies are starting to test out their devices.

“We’re in that valley of death, climbing out of there at the moment,” naval architect Christopher Ridgewell, CEO of AW-Energy, a Finnish company working on a wave energy device called the WaveRoller, told Greentech.

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