June 30/July 7, 2008




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Perspective

"An elevated local highway interchange... was built here a few years ago for $160 million dollars, an amount that significantly exceeded [the National Renewable Energy Laboratory]'s annual budget."
-Craig Grimes, Penn State


News

RESEARCH

Hydrogen peroxide powers

It's hard to beat liquid fuels for convenient energy storage. The trick is finding inexpensive, renewable and environmentally sound fuels. [more]

RESEARCH

Hydrogen storage hits 10%

One of the difficult problems to be worked out if we are to have a hydrogen-based energy economy is how to store the stuff in hydrogen-powered vehicles. [more]

RESEARCH

3D solar cells catch rebounds

The first order of business for making efficient solar cells is getting them to absorb more light. And one way to do this is to make solar cells thicker. [more]

RESEARCH

Dye boosts nanotube solar cell

One way to increase solar cell efficiency is to make make sure the electrons freed by absorbed photons continue to flow freely in a stream of useful electricity... [more]

Q & A

Penn State's Craig Grimes talks about

Hydrogen from water, the importance of nanotubes, wars and the end of the free energy ride. [more]

RESEARCH

Enzyme cranks out cheap semiconductor

Zinc oxide, a relatively inexpensive semiconductor material used in some solar cells, could become even less expensive thanks to a room-temperature chemical process for producing zinc oxide nanocrystals. [more]

RESEARCH

Ceramic promises cooler fuel cells

A candidate material for a solid oxide fuel cell promises a new generation of the devices that can operate at lower temperatures. [more]

FUNDING

DOE lines up $90m for geothermal research

Money for geothermal research is moving through the Department of Energy pipeline. [more]

LAB NOTE

Demo car hits 100 mpg

Carmakers ought to be able to sell 100-miles-per-gallon cars. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has demonstrated the point with a modified Toyota Prius. The researchers converted a stock 2006 Prius into a plug-in hybrid and added a larger lithium-ion battery and a rooftop solar panel to more than double the car's gas mileage.

LAB NOTE

A123 Systems taps NREL to boost hybrid batteries

Battery maker A123 Systems has inked a three-year research and development agreement with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to improve lithium-ion batteries for hybrid cars. NREL will help the company improve battery heat management, which should lead to lighter, more durable vehicle batteries.

FUNDING & POLICY

Solar and algae projects funded

The National Science Foundation has funded an organic photovoltaic research project and an algae biofuel research project. [more]


Features

Q&As


Special Report
Energy in transition: researchers talk about Obama and our future

The return of science, the enormous task, the Apollo-like effort required, and ideas for remaking the nation's energy infrastructure.

Eric on Energy

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Welcome to ERN

This is the debut issue of Energy Research News. Our mission is to track the future of energy as it's shaped in the world's laboratories. [more]

Features

Q&As

Special Report
Energy in transition: researchers talk about Obama and our future

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Technology Research News

News and views from elsewhere

Scientific American
Solar Sell: Companies that Mass Marketed PCs Turn to Photovoltaics

Technology Review
Cheaper Solar Power

Photon International
SunEdison to sell output from 18 MW plant in North Carolina

Wall Street Journal
Blowing In: What’s Behind Duke’s Wind-Power Push?

Renewable Energy Magazine
Solar photovoltaic energy could power 10% of the world by 2035

Green Car Congress
Study: Growing Bioenergy Crops on Abandoned Farmland Could Meet 8% of World’s Current Energy Need

Rob Day, Cleantech Investing
Debunking some of the myths around cleantech venture capital


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