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June 22 2018


Turbocharge for lithium batteries

Julich, Germany (SPX) Jun 22, 2018
Lithium-ion batteries are the ultimate benchmark when it comes to mobile phones, tablet devices, and electric cars. Their storage capacity and power density are far superior to other rechargeable battery systems. Despite all the progress that has been made, however, smartphone batteries only last a day and electric cars need hours to be recharged. Scientists are therefore working on ways t

ABB to install multipurpose microgrid in Australia

Sydney, Australia (SPX) Jun 22, 2018
ABB will supply a microgrid solution to the Energy Storage for Commercial Renewable Integration (ESCRI) project, which will provide a more secure power supply in an area that has high renewable penetration into the grid. The solution will connect an ABB Ability PowerStore 30 megawatt (MW) battery energy storage solution to the Electranet transmission system enabling the value stacking of storage

June 21 2018


Major challenge in mass production of low-cost solar cells solved

A team has solved a major fabrication challenge for perovskite cells -- the intriguing potential challengers to silicon-based solar cells. The team reveals a new scalable means of applying the compound PCBM, a critical component, to perovskite cells.

KYOCERA to participate in Japan's virtual power plant project to improve energy management

Tokyo, Japan (SPX) Jun 20, 2018
Kyocera has registered with the Sustainable open Innovation Initiative (SII) as a resource aggregator*1 for a new program to help control energy resources among Japanese consumers. This latest test project runs until February 2019, plans to expand the coverage area to Tohoku and Hokkaido and is designed to test the flexible response to changing energy supply and demand. Part of a larger pr

New material for splitting water

Washington DC (SPX) Jun 20, 2018
Solar energy is clean and abundant. But when the sun isn't shining, you must store the energy in batteries or through a process called photocatalysis - in which solar energy is used to make fuels. In photocatalytic water splitting, sunlight separates water into hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen and oxygen can then be recombined in a fuel cell to release energy. Now, a new class of material

June 20 2018


Buildings as power stations work: They generate more energy than they consume, data shows

The UK's first energy-positive classroom generated more than one and a half times the energy it consumed, according to data from its first year of operation, the team has revealed. The findings were announced as the researchers launched the next phase of their research, gathering data and evidence on an office building, constructed using similar methods.

Ground-breaking discoveries could create superior alloys with many applications

Gothenburg, Sweden (SPX) Jun 20, 2018
Many current and future technologies require alloys that can withstand high temperatures without corroding. Now, researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, have hailed a major breakthrough in understanding how alloys behave at high temperatures, pointing the way to significant improvements in many technologies. The results are published in the highly ranked journal Nature Material

Sodium- and potassium-based batteries hold promise for cheap energy storage

Atlanta GA (SPX) Jun 20, 2018
From electric cars that travel hundreds of miles on a single charge to chainsaws as mighty as gas-powered versions, new products hit the market each year that take advantage of recent advances in battery technology. But that growth has led to concerns that the world's supply of lithium, the metal at the heart of many of the new rechargeable batteries, may eventually be depleted. Now

June 19 2018


New material for splitting water

Solar energy is clean and abundant, but when the sun isn't shining, you must store the energy in batteries or through a process called photocatalysis. In photocatalytic water splitting, sunlight separates water into hydrogen and oxygen, which can then be recombined in a fuel cell to release energy. Now, a new class of materials -- halide double perovskites -- may have just the right properties to split water.

German utility makes solar debut in Texas

Washington (UPI) Jun 12, 2018
German utility E.ON said Tuesday it was making its solar energy debut in Texas with plans for a 670-acre site in the west region of the state. E.ON announced plans for a 100-megawatt facility in Reeves County, Texas. It's already made agreements for half of that capacity for the next 50 years with South Korean energy company SK E&S Co., Ltd. "West of the Pecos is our first solar

SoftBank plans $60-100 bn investment in solar in India: report

Tokyo (AFP) June 15, 2018
Japan's SoftBank is planning to invest between $60-100 billion in a solar power project in India, a Japanese report said Friday, as the firm looks to expand its interests into various sectors. The report by public broadcaster NHK comes after SoftBank announced in March it would partner Saudi Arabia on a multi-billion dollar solar project that the company's founder called the largest in the w

Solar cells combining silicon with perovskite push achieve record efficiency over 25 percent

Lausanne, Switzerland (SPX) Jun 19, 2018
In the field of photovoltaic technologies, silicon-based solar cells make up 90% of the market. In terms of cost, stability and efficiency (20-22% for a typical solar cell on the market), they are well ahead of the competition. However, after decades of research and investment, silicon-based solar cells are now close to their maximum theoretical efficiency. As a result, new concepts are re

Solar FlexRack completes shipments to 71 MW solar project in North Carolina

Youngstown OH (SPX) Jun 19, 2018
Steve Daniel, Executive Vice President of Solar FlexRack said, "We are extremely pleased to have been selected to supply this project. Cypress Creek Renewables has been instrumental in supporting the growth of the solar industry in North Carolina, generating jobs for communities, and providing passive income opportunities for landowners. "As long-term solar project owners and operators, th

EU sets higher target for renewable energy by 2030

Strasbourg, France (AFP) June 14, 2018
The EU agreed Thursday to raise its consumption target from wind, solar and other renewable energy sources, aiming for 32 percent by 2030 rather than the previous 27 percent. But environmentalists said the provisional deal between the 28 European Union countries, the European Parliament and the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, was not ambitious enough to fight climate change.

June 18 2018


Nickel ferrite promotes capacity and cycle stability of lithium-sulfur battery

Beijing, China (SPX) Jun 18, 2018
Lithium-sulfur (Li-S) battery can be put into practice, if 20% of theoretical energy densities (2600 Wh/kg or 2800 Wh/L) can be achieved. Investigators have the ambition to reach the energy density of 500 Wh/kg in the near future. Xue-Ping Gao and co-workers, from Nankai University, tell us "Till now, the volumetric energy density of 500 Wh/L is not satisfied. But it was already realized i

Wartsila leading along the path towards a 100% renewable energy future

Helsinki, Finland (SPX) Jun 18, 2018
The technology group Wartsila is leading the way to the power industry's transformation towards a future that utilises 100 percent renewable energy. In announcing its vision for the energy market, Wartsila is making a call to action since the technologies required to achieve this vision are already available. The energy sector is changing for all stakeholders, and Wartsila is harnessing its exte

Tripling the energy storage of lithium-ion batteries

Upton NY (SPX) Jun 15, 2018
As the demand for smartphones, electric vehicles, and renewable energy continues to rise, scientists are searching for ways to improve lithium-ion batteries--the most common type of battery found in home electronics and a promising solution for grid-scale energy storage. Increasing the energy density of lithium-ion batteries could facilitate the development of advanced technologies with long-las

June 14 2018


New Chinese solar policies deliver short-term blow

Washington DC (SPX) Jun 06, 2018
A Chinese move to put a cap on solar power developments could lead to short-term shocks, but could help advance a greener economy, analysis shows. China last week introduced policy that suspends the approval of subsidized power stations and mandates certain prices through competitive auctions. According to analysis sent to UPI from consultant group Wood Mackenzie, the mandate sen

Lead-free, efficient perovskite for photovoltaic cells

Seoul, South Korea (SPX) Jun 12, 2018
A KAIST research team has proposed a perovskite material, Cs2Au2I6 that serves as a potential active material for highly efficient lead-free thin-film photovoltaic devices. This material is expected to lay the foundation to overcome previously known limitations of perovskite including its stability and toxicity issues. As strong candidates for next-generation high-efficiency photovoltaic c

Confined, insensitive light could improve lasers, solar cells

University Park PA (SPX) Jun 12, 2018
Cheaper and more efficient photonic devices, such as lasers, optical fibers, and other light sources may be possible with confined light that is unaffected by imperfections in the material that confines it, according to new research. A team of physicists from Penn State, the University of Pittsburgh, and the University of Illinois have demonstrated in a proof-of-concept experiment that the
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