Green Design

Technology Awarded for Improving Submarine Air Quality

Creators of a nanotech-based system that captures carbon dioxide from the atmosphere within a submarine while providing a more environmentally friendly removal process have won the Federal Laboratory Consortium Interagency Partnership Award for 2012. The technology — Self Assembled Monolayers on Mesoporous Supports, or SAMMS — is destined for incorporation into future submarines.

Posted in: Remediation Technologies, Greenhouse Gases, Materials, Nanotechnology, News

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Copper-Gold Nanoparticles Efficiently Convert Carbon Dioxide

Copper is one of the few metals that can turn carbon dioxide into hydrocarbon fuels with relatively little energy, but it is temperamental and easily oxidized. MIT researchers have engineered nanoparticles of copper mixed with gold - which is resistant to corrosion and oxidation - making the copper much more stable. They coated electrodes with the hybrid nanoparticles and found that much less energy was needed for conversion.

Posted in: Remediation Technologies, Greenhouse Gases, Materials, Metals, Energy Efficiency, Nanotechnology, News

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Boosting Nanowires for Better Batteries and Solar Cells

Stanford University engineers have found a novel method for "decorating" nanowires with chains of tiny particles to increase their electrical and catalytic performance. The technique is simpler and faster than earlier methods and could lead to better lithium-ion batteries, more efficient thin-film solar cells, and improved catalysts that yield new synthetic fuels.

Posted in: Batteries, Alternative Fuels, Energy Storage, Solar Power, Renewable Energy, Nanotechnology, News

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

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Sandwich-Like Structures for Efficient Hydrogen Fuel Cells

Making hydrogen fuel cells practical on a large scale requires them to be more efficient and cost effective, and a research team from the University of Central Florida may have found a way around both hurdles.

Posted in: Alternative Fuels, Materials, Metals, News

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

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

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