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Doubling Butanol Production

An Ohio State University team led by Shang-Tian Yang, professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, has found a way to double the production of the biofuel butanol - which might someday replace gasoline in automobiles.

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

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Cooling Challenge Yields A Better AC Unit

Coolerado Corp. of Denver, CO is the first winner of the UC Davis “Western Cooling Challenge.” Recent federal tests showed that their five-ton commercial rooftop unit should be able to air-condition a typical big-box store with less than half the energy needed by conventional cooling units.

Posted in: Energy Efficiency, Energy, News, Products, GDM

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Warming Ocean Triggers Release of Greenhouse Gas

Scientists at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton, UK, have found that the warming of an Arctic current over the last 30 years has triggered the release of methane - a potent greenhouse gas - from methane hydrate stored in the sediment beneath the seabed.

Posted in: Climate, News, GDM

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Energy-Efficient Sewage Plants

High-rate digestion with microfiltration is state-of-the-art in large sewage plants. It effectively removes accumulated sludge, and produces biogas to generate energy. A Fraunhofer Institute study reveals that even smaller plants can benefit from this process.

Posted in: Biomass, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, Energy, News, GDM

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Absolute Positioning Sensor for Solar Tracking

The T7 absolute inclinometer from US Digital (Vancouver, WA) utilizes a solid-state sensor to give high-accuracy tilt readings over a 360 degree range, and is ideal for concentrated solar power (CSP) and concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) industries.

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

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Using Plastics to Make Solar Cells More Cost-Effective

Scientists are striving to develop organic solar cells that can be produced as easily and inexpensively as thin films. A major obstacle is coaxing these carbon-based materials to reliably form the proper structure at the nanoscale. The goal is to develop cells made from low-cost plastics that will transform at least 10 percent of sunlight into electricity.

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

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Researchers Striving to Cut Waste When Slicing Silicon

A filigree wire is standardly used to slice silicon blocks (ingots) into paper-thin wafers for solar cells. This wire can cut through the ingot at a speed of up to 60 km/h. Several hundred kilometers long, the wire is arranged in such a way that the ingot is sliced into hundreds of wafers simultaneously. The process takes around six hours and the resultant slices are approximately 180 µm thick. Researchers are setting out to reduce this thickness, and therefore reduce waste.

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

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