News

Voltage Increases Observed in Closely Packed Nanowires

Unexpected voltage increases of up to 25 percent in two barely separated nanowires have been observed at Sandia National Laboratories. Designers of next-generation devices using nanowires to deliver electric currents — including batteries and certain solar arrays — may need to make allowances for such surprise boosts.

Posted in: Batteries, Solar Power, Energy Efficiency, Test & Measurement, News, GDM

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Evaluating Electrical Performance and Grid Integration of Vehicle-to-Grid Applications

Researchers at the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have released a technical report that documents a series of test procedures designed to enable engineers, designers, and utilities to evaluate the performance of various electric vehicles and hybrids to optimize how they connect with electric utility grids today – and smart grids in the future.

Posted in: Alternative Fuels, Transportation, Energy Efficiency, Batteries, Smart Grid, News, GDM

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Thinner Thermal Insulation for Better Energy Savings

In order to lower energy costs, more and more homeowners are investing in insulation facades. But the typical insulation layers on the market have one drawback: they add bulk. The thick outer skin changes the building’s visual appearance and can result in significant follow-up costs – with a need to fit new, deeper window sills and sometimes even roof extensions.

Posted in: Materials, Plastics, Energy Efficiency, Energy, News, GDM

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Bacteria Engineered to Eat Switchgrass and Make Transportation Fuels

Researchers with DOE’s Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) have engineered the first strains of Escherichia coli bacteria that can digest switchgrass biomass and synthesize its sugars into all three of those transportation fuels. The microbes are even able to do this without any help from enzyme additives.

Posted in: Alternative Fuels, Green Design & Manufacturing, Biomass, Renewable Energy, Energy, Transportation, News, GDM

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"Fool's Gold" Could Lead to Cheaper Solar Energy

Pyrite - or “fool’s gold” - has recently helped researchers at Oregon State University discover related compounds that offer new, cheap, and promising options for solar energy. These new compounds would be benign and could be processed from some of the most abundant elements on Earth.

Posted in: Materials, Solar Power, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, Energy, News, GDM

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Is Sustainability Science a Legitimate Science?

Creating a scientific field just out of societal and policy need is a bold concept. But Los Alamos National Laboratory and Indiana University researchers say that for the emerging field of sustainability science - sorting among theoretical and applied scientific disciplines, making sense of potentially divergent theory, practice, and policy - the gamble has paid off.

Posted in: Government, Research Lab, News, GDM

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Efficient Method for Creating Flexible, Transparent Electrodes

As the market for liquid crystal displays and other electronics continues to drive up the price of indium — the material used to make the indium tin oxide (ITO) transparent electrodes in these devices — scientists have been searching for a less costly and more dynamic alternative, particularly for use in future flexible electronics.

Posted in: Electronics, Materials, Metals, Solar Power, Renewable Energy, News, GDM

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