Sensing Method Checks Refrigerant Levels, Saves Energy

A new “virtual refrigerant charge sensor" saves energy and servicing costs by indicating when air conditioners are low on refrigerant, preventing the units from working overtime. Engineers at Purdue University developed the sensing technique, which is particularly practical for automotive air conditioners.

Posted in: Energy Efficiency, Energy, News, GDM


Fuel-Cell Power Systems Incorporating Mg-Based H2 Generators

Two hydrogen generators based on reactions involving magnesium and steam have been proposed at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory as means for generating fuel (hydrogen gas) for motor vehicles. The generators would make it unnecessary to rely on expensive, heavy, bulky, or unsafe hydrogen storage systems previously developed.

Posted in: Alternative Fuels, Green Design & Manufacturing, Energy Storage, Energy, Briefs, GDM


A Step Toward Producing Plastic from Biomass

Researchers with Berkeley Lab and the University of California (UC) Berkeley have discovered a mild and relatively inexpensive procedure for removing oxygen from biomass. This procedure, if it can be effectively industrialized, could allow many of today’s petrochemical products, including plastics, to instead be made from biomass.

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


NASA Energy Concept Could Harness the Power of Ocean Waves

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) researchers who developed a new way to power robotic underwater vehicles believe a spin-off technology could help convert ocean energy into electrical energy on a much larger scale. The researchers hope that clean, renewable energy produced from the motion of the ocean and rivers could potentially meet an important part of the world’s demand for electricity.

Posted in: Renewable Energy, Energy, Hydroelectric Power, Articles, Features, GDM


New “Electronic Glue” Could Accelerate Advances in Solar Cells

Researchers at the University of Chicago and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have developed an “electronic glue” that could speed up advances in semiconductor-based technologies, including solar cells and thermoelectric devices that convert sun light and waste heat, respectively, into useful electrical energy.

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


Designing the First Fully Sustainable Block in the U.S.

In the near future, a crumbling parking lot in downtown Dallas, Texas will be the location of the first fully sustainable, urban square block in the United States. Re:Vision Dallas is the sixth competition in a series from the San Francisco, California-based organization, Urban Re:Vision – a group of people focused on changing the urban landscape by re-imagining the components which make up a city block.

Posted in: Building Technologies, Remediation Technologies, Green Design & Manufacturing, Geothermal Power, Solar Power, Wind Power, Renewable Energy, Energy, Articles, Features, GDM


World's First Full-Scale Floating Windmill to Undergo Testing

News of the world's first full-scale floating windmill being built spread over a year ago. Now, the Hywind has reached its final destination, where it will face rigorous testing. The Hywind concept combines known technologies in a novel way: a 2.3 MW wind turbine is attached to the top of a Spar-buoy, a solution familiar from production platforms and offshore loading buoys. It captures the wind's energy where the wind is strongest – out at sea.

Posted in: Wind Power, Renewable Energy, Energy, News, GDM