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Archive for the ‘solar power’ category

Jan 26, 2023

An Energy News Bulletin: About the Latest on Solar Cells, Energy Storage and Power Transmission

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

A new solar cell breakthrough, an energy vault comes to Northern California, and Bill Gates talks about the U.S. bringing the grid into the 21st century.


UCLA invents enhanced perovskite solar cells, PG&E partners with Energy Vault on a storage project, and Bill Gates talks about power lines.

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Jan 19, 2023

A city in Japan is trying to generate electricity from snow

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

After solar power, it’s time we tried snow power.

Researchers from the Japanese city of Aomori have begun to study methods to create electricity from snow to provide a sustainable energy supply and meet any power shortages.

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Jan 17, 2023

What is Graphullerene and Why Are Material Scientists Excited About its Properties?

Posted by in categories: mobile phones, solar power, sustainability

Future smartphones, sensors, solar panels and wind turbines will contain electronics in which graphullerene is present.

Jan 16, 2023

Scientists Have Developed a Living “Bio-Solar Cell” That Runs on Photosynthesis

Posted by in categories: biological, food, solar power, sustainability

Plants are often thought of as sources of food, oxygen, and decoration, but not as a source of electricity. However, scientists have discovered that by harnessing the natural transport of electrons within plant cells, it is possible to generate electricity as part of a green, biological solar cell. In a recent study published in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, researchers for the first time used a succulent plant to create a living “bio-solar cell” that runs on photosynthesis.

Photosynthesis is how plants and some microorganisms use sunlight to synthesize carbohydrates from carbon dioxide and water.

Jan 16, 2023

This bold new mission will try beaming solar power down from space

Posted by in categories: solar power, space, sustainability

The Space Solar Power Project (SSPP) began in 2011 when Donald Bren — philanthropist, chairman of the Irvine Company, and a lifetime member of the Caltech Board of Trustees — and Caltech’s then-president Jean-Lou Chameau came together to discuss the potential for a space-based solar power research project. By 2013, Bren and his wife (Caltech trustee Brigitte Bren) began funding the project through the Donald Bren Foundation, which will eventually exceed $100 million. As Bren said in a recent Caltech press release:

“For many years, I’ve dreamed about how space-based solar power could solve some of humanity’s most urgent challenges. Today, I’m thrilled to be supporting Caltech’s brilliant scientists as they race to make that dream a reality.”

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Jan 13, 2023

How solar farms in space might beam electricity to Earth

Posted by in categories: government, solar power, space, sustainability

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The UK government is supporting projects to put solar panels in space and beam energy back to Earth.

Jan 12, 2023

Green jobs are booming, but too few employees have sustainability skills to fill them — here are 4 ways to close the gap

Posted by in categories: economics, employment, solar power, sustainability

Green jobs go beyond solar panel installation and wind turbine maintenance. They’re found in fields from design to economics and in many types of management.

Jan 7, 2023

Self-healing semiconductor withstands light equal to 160 suns to produce hydrogen

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

A new type of solar panel has achieved nine percent efficiency in converting water into hydrogen and oxygen through a process known as artificial photosynthesis.

This is a major breakthrough as it is nearly ten times more efficient than previous solar water-splitting experiments, according to a press release by the University of Michigan published on Wednesday.

Jan 7, 2023

The Concept of Unlimited Solar Energy From Space is One Step Closer to Reality

Posted by in categories: satellites, solar power, sustainability

Space Solar Power Demonstrator (SSPD) launched on January 3rd may be a breakthrough for harvesting solar energy from space.


A Caltech-designed prototype satellite containing an experiment, the Space Solar Power Demonstrator (SSPD), was launched on January 3rd of this year in what could prove to be a breakthrough for harvesting the energy of the Sun from space. The satellite goes by the name Momentus Vigoride and hitched its ride into space on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

Solar energy from space has been the dream of science fiction writers beginning with Isaac Asimov back in 1941 in a short story called Reason which later was included in a collection that Asimov published in 1950 entitled I, Robot. In the story, Asimov described a space station that collected energy from the Sun and transmitted it by microwave beam to various locations. Asimov recognized the distinct advantage of building solar power generating stations in space out of the Earth’s shadow and therefore continuously being able to harvest the energy of the Sun.

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Jan 5, 2023

Innovation strengthens electron-triggered light emissions for quantum-based computational and communications systems

Posted by in categories: computing, nanotechnology, quantum physics, solar power, sustainability

The way electrons interact with photons of light is a vital part of many modern technologies, from lasers to solar panels to LEDs. But the interaction is inherently weak because of a major mismatch in scale: the wavelength of visible light is about 1,000 times larger than an electron, so the way the two things affect each other is limited by that disparity.

Now, researchers at The University of Hong Kong (HKU), MIT and other universities say they have come up with an innovative way to make more robust interactions between photons and electrons possible, that produces a hundredfold increase in the emission of light from a phenomenon called Smith-Purcell radiation. The findings have potential ramifications for both and fundamental scientific research, although it will require more years of investigation to put into practice.

The findings are published in Nature by Dr. Yi Yang (Assistant Professor of the Department of Physics at HKU and a former postdoc at MIT), Dr. Charles Roques-carmes (Postdoctoral Associate at MIT) and Professors Marin Soljačić and John Joannopoulos (MIT professors). The research team also included Steven Kooi at MIT’s Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies, Haoning Tang and Eric Mazur at Harvard University, Justin Beroz at MIT, and Ido Kaminer at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology.

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