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The Rights of Airline Passengers

Flight delays are nothing new to airline travelers. Congested runways, inclement weather, aircraft problems - all of these factors can trigger delays that could easily run into hours. But after several recent incidents where airline passengers were stranded for six hours, the call to legislate a "passenger bill...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
NIST Gets the Dirt on Soil

NIST has issued three new certified reference materials for soil. Intended for use as controls in testing laboratories, the new Standard Reference Materials (SRMs) will aid in determining soil quality, detecting...

Products: Energy
Class AAA Solar Simulators

Oriel Sol3A™ solar simulators from Newport Corporation (Irvine, CA) are available in sizes from 2 x 2, 4 x 4, 6 x 6, and 8 x 8 inches, making them ideal for the test and measurement of solar cells.

News: Energy
Paintable Solar Cells

Using nanoparticle “inks” developed at University of Texas at Austin, solar cells could be printed more cheaply - with a roll-to-roll printing process on a plastic substrate or stainless steel. The prospect of...

Today, DOE Secretary Steven Chu announced the investment of up to $6.4 million (including $4.6 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) for advancing research and development of next generation...

News: Electronics & Computers
Fuel Cell/Battery-Powered UAV Takes Flight

EnergyOr Technologies Inc., of Montreal, Canada, has designed, constructed, and tested an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) platform to demonstrate its fuel cell hybrid technology. EnergyOr's system will achieve 8 hours flight endurance in the near future.

A new LED display process developed by an international team of researchers offers properties like see-through construction and mechanical flexibility - which would be impossible to achieve with existing...

Videos: Green Design & Manufacturing
Scrubbing Out Sulfur

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory researchers have developed a reusable organic liquid that can pull harmful gases like carbon dioxide or sulfur dioxide out of industrial emissions from power plants. Power plants...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
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...

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...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
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...

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...

Products: Green Design & Manufacturing
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...

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...

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...

A team of researchers from the U.S. and China modified a microbial fuel cell - a device that uses naturally occurring bacteria to convert wastewater into clean water...

Scientists at Berkeley Lab have created non-toxic magnesium oxide nanocrystals whose size can be adjusted within just a few nanometers. The nanocrystals glow blue when exposed...

Blog
Who Benefits From "Cash for Clunkers"?

The U.S. Senate is now deciding on whether to approve an additional $2 billion in funding for the government's "Cash for Clunkers" program. Should the Senate approve, President Obama is certain to approve extending the program, designed to replace old gas-guzzling vehicles with more fuel-efficient ones, by...

Philips Lumileds (San Jose, CA) expanded its LUXEON® Rebel family of LEDs with nine new emitters designed for illumination solutions such as recessed lighting, street lamps, and retrofit bulbs. The new LEDs...

DOE announced the availability of up to $5.5 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to increase the use of higher ethanol blends up to E85 (85% ethanol/15% gasoline) by expanding refueling...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
Working Toward Better CO2 Capture

Separating carbon dioxide from its polluting source - such as the flue gas from a coal-fired power plant - may soon become cleaner and more efficient thanks to a screening method developed by a Lawrence...

Supertex, Inc. (Sunnyvale, CA) introduces a buck-mode LED driver IC with hysteretic current control and high-side current sensing. The HV9918 is ideal for a variety of solid-state lighting...

Allen Parker is a systems engineer with expertise in the areas of fiber optics and data acquisition. He is currently part of the team...

Blog
Re-Inventing the Number

I had the opportunity to meet with an old friend of NASA Tech Briefs last week. Allen Razdow, who many design engineers may know as the inventor of Mathcad and the co-founder of MathSoft, was in town to talk to me about his new company and his new venture, a sort of “Wikipedia for numbers.”

The company, True...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
Reinventing the Tuktuk

In large cities across Asia, auto rickshaws (tuktuks) are one of the most important means of transportation. These tuktuks produce considerable CO2 emissions and air pollution, and their drivers are underpaid....

Today, the NASA Innovative Partnerships Program and the Comparative Aircraft Flight Efficiency (CAFE) Foundation officially announced the Green Flight Challenge. The flight efficiency competition is for...

News: Energy
Creating "Cool" Cars

Operating the air conditioning is the largest auxiliary energy drain on cars. In December 2008, DOE announced a project to study and develop thermoelectric heating and cooling systems. As partners in the project,...

News: Energy
Improvements in Organic Photovoltaics on the Horizon
Organic photovoltaics, which rely on organic molecules to capture sunlight and convert it into electricity, have come a step closer to reality thanks to discoveries by NIST researchers. The scientists have deepened their understanding of the complex organic films at the heart of the devices.
Blog
Computer Program Warns Weary Drivers

Although less publicized than alcohol, driver fatigue is a major contributor to auto accidents in the U.S. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 56,000 sleep-related road crashes occur annually in the U.S., resulting in 40,000 injuries and 1,550 fatalities. According to the...

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