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Archive for the ‘sustainability’ category

Jan 23, 2022

Quantum dots boost perovskite solar cell efficiency and scalability

Posted by in categories: quantum physics, solar power, sustainability

Perovskites are hybrid compounds made from metal halides and organic constituents. They show great potential in a range of applications, e.g. LED lights, lasers, and photodetectors, but their major contribution is in solar cells, where they are poised to overtake the market from their silicon counterparts.

One of the obstacles facing the commercialization of solar is that their power-conversion efficiency and operational stability drop as they scale up, making it a challenge to maintain in a complete solar cell.

The problem is partly with the cell’s electron-transport , which ensures that the electrons produced when the cell absorbs light will transfer efficiently to the device’s electrode. In perovskite solar cells, the electron-transport layer is made with mesoporous titanium dioxide, which shows low electron mobility, and is also susceptible to adverse, photocatalytic events under ultraviolet light.

Jan 23, 2022

First-ever electric bus designed and developed in Africa

Posted by in categories: engineering, sustainability, transportation

Nairobi, Kenya - Opibus has just introduced the first all-electric bus in Kenya as well as the first African designed electric bus ever. This is the first major step in the company’s vision to provide a locally designed and developed electric bus that can be mass-produced for the pan-African market, by the end of 2023. This is a step towards realizing Opibus goal of electrifying Africa’s public transport system, deploying products tailored for the local use case. The bus is designed and developed in-house with local engineering talent, while at the same time utilizing local manufacturing partners.

The key to the technology is the Opibus proprietary electric vehicle platform, which is modular and can be the foundation for several types of vehicles. This enables the creation of a bus that is suitable for the African use case, in its reliability, durability and price point. This also means local and global contract manufactures can be used to create a globally competitive product, with a rapid scale-up.

Jan 22, 2022

Cybersecurity in 2022 — A Fresh Look at Some Very Alarming Stats

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, climatology, cybercrime/malcode, sustainability

*The past two years has seen a rapid shift of work to remote and hybrid offices. The statistics show that hackers welcomed that shift and took advantage of the vulnerabilities and gaps in security by businesses.

* Cyber perils are the biggest concern for companies globally in 2022, according to the Allianz Risk Barometer. The threat of ransomware attacks, data breaches or major IT outages worries companies even more than business and supply chain disruption, natural disasters or the COVID-19 pandemic, all of which have heavily affected firms in the past year.

Cyber incidents tops the Allianz Risk Barometer for only the second time in the survey’s history (44% of responses), Business interruption drops to a close second (42%) and Natural catastrophes ranks third (25%), up from sixth in 2021. Climate change climbs to its highest-ever ranking of sixth (17%, up from ninth), while Pandemic outbreak drops to fourth (22%).y affected firms in the past year. past two years has seen a rapid shift of work to remote and hybrid offices. The statistics show that hackers welcomed that shift and took advantage of the vulnerabilities and gaps in security by businesses.

Continue reading “Cybersecurity in 2022 — A Fresh Look at Some Very Alarming Stats” »

Jan 22, 2022

Rolls-Royce’s Electric Plane Breaks The World Speed Record

Posted by in categories: sustainability, transportation

Rolls-Royce today announced that its Spirit of Innovation aircraft has officially become the world’s fastest all-electric vehicle. The ambitious aircraft attempted the feat in November, giving the British company the confidence that it had set a new record. However, the firm had to wait until now to receive confirmation from aviation bodies.

The Spirit of Innovation program seeks to pioneer sustainable aviation by proving the capabilities of electric flight. Those behind the program are keen to enable a future of low-carbon air travel.

The plane first took off the Ministry of Defence’s Boscombe Down site in the English county of Wiltshire in September last year. A 400kW (500+hp) electric powertrain helped the aircraft on its way, a piece of equipment that is backed by what is dubbed the most power-dense battery pack ever put together for a plane.

Jan 22, 2022

100% Zero-Emissions Cherry Orchard

Posted by in categories: climatology, solar power, sustainability

Forest Lodge Orchard is New Zealand’s first zero-emissions food producer. Forest Lodge Orchard is located in Central Otago, New Zealand, and is 100% free of fossil fuels. The farmers have electrified everything at the orchard — their irrigation, frost-fighting fans, electric vehicles, tools, and more. Supporting this electrification with a 45 kW solar power array and extendable battery storage system.

In January 2022, Forest Lodge will have its first zero-emission harvest of cherries. The focus is on the climate, and the folks at Forest Lodge believe that New Zealand’s future as a food-producing nation will excel with the ability to grow and produce food in a sustainable and climate-friendly way.

Jan 22, 2022

Organic redox flow battery uses liquid electrolytes

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability

Energy storage manufacturer CMBlu has developed — in the context of New Energy — an innovative product: the sustainable flow storage unit. This “Organic Flow Battery” can be a solution or a game-changer for the central question of energy supply, which is: How can green energy be stored safely in large quantities?

Organic Flow Batteries from CMBlu are the first of their kind to be developed for commercial use. The technology is based on readily available, fully recyclable, organic materials. The aqueous electrolytes are non-flammable and ensure absolutely safe and reliable operation. The batteries are freely scalable between output and capacity. They can therefore be precisely adapted to the individual requirements of the corresponding application with corresponding cost advantages. The system-inherent separation of electrolyte and actual energy converter not only avoids the effect of self-discharge, but also enables the restoration of the original performance by simply replacing individual components instead of the entire battery.

For more articles on batteries of all kinds, click here.

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Jan 22, 2022

Unpacking The “Electric Cars Aren’t As Green As You Think” Claims

Posted by in categories: sustainability, transportation

Volvo has pledged to manufacture only electric cars by 2030. In November of last year, it released a 50-page report that delves in exquisite detail into the total carbon footprint of its cars, the purpose being to allow an honest and transparent analysis of the progress it is making toward its corporate goal of reducing emissions from manufacturing its automobiles by 40% by 2025, compared to the reference year of 2018.

Volvo produces three versions of its 40 series cars — the XC40 powered by a gasoline engine, the XC40 Recharge powered by a battery pack, and the C40 Recharge, a more aerodynamically styled version of the XC40 Recharge. All three are built in the same factory by the same workers using similar parts. That allows Volvo to do a close analysis of the emissions characteristics of each. On page 24 of its study, there is one sentence that has been seized upon by anti-EV provocateurs to as proof that electric cars are not nearly as “green” as people think they are. Here is what it says:

Jan 21, 2022

Battery manufacturing is coming to Europe

Posted by in categories: business, economics, employment, energy, sustainability, transportation

Over 70,000 jobs will be created through the rising battery manufacturing in Europe within the next years, new studies predict.


The energy supply in Germany and Europe has never been more in flux. As the success of renewable energies continues to mount, another technology is coming into focus. Energy storage technologies and battery storage systems in particular are becoming increasingly important with the advancement of the energy transition. This development also has significant implications for Germany as an economic center, since battery production is expected to create thousands of jobs here in the future.

Europe has not traditionally played a very significant role as a site for battery cell production, but technical advances, favorable political conditions and an especially promising sales market are making the continent increasingly attractive for battery production. A look at the key role that battery cell production plays in upstream value chains – throughout the renewable energy supply sector and especially in the manufacture of electric vehicles – makes its significance clear. Battery cells represent approximately 40 percent of the value added in the production of an electric vehicle. So it is no wonder that production capacities for lithium-ion batteries are growing faster in Europe than in any other region of the world. Current forecasts predict that the continent’s share in this global manufacturing business will increase from around 6 percent now to 16 to 25 percent by 2030.

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Jan 21, 2022

This is what big companies want from car and truck makers in EVs

Posted by in categories: space, sustainability

Vehicle manufacturers are ramping up electric vehicle production, so big companies like Amazon, AT&T, and IKEA are telling vehicle manufacturers what kinds of EVs they want. Here’s the “blueprint” that members of the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance are today presenting to makers like Volvo, GM, and Daimler explaining which EVs they want to purchase in the United States over the next five years.

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In January 2020, as Electrek then reported, Boston-based sustainability nonprofit group Ceres launched the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance, a group to help companies accelerate the transition to electric vehicles.

Continue reading “This is what big companies want from car and truck makers in EVs” »

Jan 20, 2022

Is The California Solar Dream Fading Fast?

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

California has more rooftops with solar panels than any other state and continues to be a leader in new installations. It is also first in terms of the percentage of the state’s electricity coming from solar, and third for solar power capacity per capita. However, former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has expressed concerns that California solar — once the model for other US states — is on a precipice. In an opinion piece for the New York Times this week, Schwarzenegger has unpacked a new California Public Utilities Commission proposal which, if approved, would discourage progress being made in the transition to clean energy and grid resilience.

What’s the problem, then? The California Public Utilities Commission is threatening solar progress. But this “hard-earned and vitally important accomplishment” may succumb as the Commission considers a plan that has the potential to make California solar too costly for its citizens.

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