Magnetic Testing Technique Helps Ensure Reliability of PV Cells

Making use of the force generated by magnetic repulsion, Georgia Tech researchers have developed a new technique for measuring the adhesion strength between thin films of materials used in microelectronic devices, photovoltaic cells, and microelectromechanical systems (MEMS).

Posted in: News, News, Renewable Energy, Solar Power, MEMs, Semiconductors & ICs, Test & Measurement


Funding for Biomass R&D Initiative

Projects funded through the Biomass Research and Development Initiative (BRDI) — a joint program through the USDA and the DOE — will help develop economically and environmentally sustainable sources of renewable biomass. The White House has announced up to $35 million over three years to support research and development in advanced biofuels, bioenergy, and high-value biobased products.

Posted in: News, News, Biomass, Renewable Energy, Government Initiatives


Using Electricity to Generate Alternative Fuel

Electrical energy generated by various methods can be difficult to store efficiently. Chemical batteries, hydraulic pumping, and water splitting suffer from low energy-density storage or incompatibility with current transportation infrastructure. UCLA researchers have demonstrated a method for storing electrical energy as chemical energy in higher alcohols, which can be used as liquid transportation fuels.

Posted in: News, News, Batteries, Energy Storage, Solar Power, Alternative Fuels, Greenhouse Gases


New 3D Designs Double Solar Power

A team of MIT researchers is building cubes or towers that extend solar cells upward in three-dimensional configurations. The results from the structures they’ve tested show power output ranging from double to more than 20 times that of fixed flat panels with the same base area.

Posted in: News, News, Computers, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, Solar Power, Test & Measurement


PDC Drill Bits Open Up Options for Geothermal Energy

Nearly two-thirds of the oil we use comes from wells drilled using polycrystalline diamond compact (PDC) bits, originally developed 30 years ago to lower the cost of geothermal drilling. Sandia National Laboratories and the U.S. Navy recently brought the technology full circle, showing how geothermal drillers might use it.

Posted in: News, News, Geothermal Power, Renewable Energy, Machinery & Automation, Test & Measurement


Nanotrees Turn Sunshine into Hydrogen Fuel

University of California, San Diego electrical engineers are building a forest of tiny nanowire trees in order to cleanly capture solar energy and harvest it for hydrogen fuel generation. Nanowires, which are made from abundant natural materials like silicon and zinc oxide, offer a cheap way to deliver hydrogen fuel on a mass scale.

Posted in: News, News, Energy Harvesting, Renewable Energy, Solar Power, Alternative Fuels, Greenhouse Gases, Nanotechnology


Insect Biochemistry & Generating Electricity

Touted as possible first responders, insect cyborgs could be the research community's next big breakthrough. Researchers from Case Western Reserve University have discovered that an insect's internal chemicals can be converted to electricity - potentially providing power to sensors and recording devices.

Posted in: News, News, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Environmental Monitoring, Sensors, Transducers


The U.S. Government does not endorse any commercial product, process, or activity identified on this web site.