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Monthly Archive: May 2010

Earth (in the Age of Oil)

Written by , on May 31, 2010

Our latest YouTube video clip is a look at what our dependence on oil is doing to the Earth.  Read more »

Miscanthus Grass Promising as Energy Crop

Written by , on May 31, 2010

Researchers from the UK Met Office have studied the benefits of various biofuel crops in models of the future global climate. They have found that the carbon that is released into the atmosphere from the loss of natural vegetation could be paid back by using miscanthus grass within 30 years.. Estimates for other biofuel crops, […]  Read more »

Wave-powered Desalination

Written by , on May 29, 2010

Independent Natural Resources Inc, has received a permit for a wave powered facility to desalinate water off the coast of Freeport, Texas. The company hopes that the system will be in operation by the end of the year. The facility will be a 25 by 50 metre platform under which there will be 18 of […]  Read more »

Biofuel from Bacteria

Written by , on May 28, 2010

Scientists at Arizona State University have reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science that they have genetically engineered bacteria to produce biofuel. Researchers Xinyao Liu and Roy Curtiss have engineered cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) that continuously secret the oil.  The scientists started by producing cyanobacteria carrying the enzyme thioesterase, that clips the bonds […]  Read more »

All-Electric Grand Prix

Written by , on May 27, 2010

In case you were worried that the end of oil would mean the end of motor sport, here’s highlights of the TTXGP, claimed to be the first all-electric zero-emission motorcycle grand prix.  Read more »

“Creative Destruction” for the Environment

Written by , on May 26, 2010

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New Lower-Cost Thin-Film Solar Technology

Written by , on May 26, 2010

Chih-hung Chang, an associate professor of chemical engineering at Oregon State University, is developing a new approach to solar energy which he believes may dramatically lower their cost while reducing waste and environmental impacts. Currently, thin-film solar cells are made using methods such as sputtering, evaporation and electrodeposition. Those processes can be time-consuming, or require […]  Read more »

Sharkskin Paint Could Improve Wind Turbines & Aircraft

Written by , on May 24, 2010

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute in Bremen have developed a paint which they say improves the efficiency of ships, aircraft and wind turbines by reducing their flow resistance. They have achieved this by modelling the paint’s structure on the scales of fast-swimnming sharks which evolved in a manner that significantly diminishes drag. The challenge was […]  Read more »

The InfoLadies of Bangladesh

Written by , on May 23, 2010

D.Net, a non-profit research organisation, is bringing some of the benefits of modern technology to impoverished rural villages in Bangladesh through a band of “InfoLadies”. The InfoLadies are young women equipped with a bicycle, phone, some medical equipment and a netbook loaded with information on topics from agriculture to health, sanitation and disaster management. The […]  Read more »

Single-seat Electric Plane

Written by , on May 21, 2010

PC Aero has shown a prototype of an all-electric, single-seater plane in Germany. The Elektra One has a wingspan of 8.6 meters and it has an effective payload of 90 kilograms. The composite plane weighs 120 kilograms and is powered by a 16 kW electric motor. The manufacturers claim that it has a operational range […]  Read more »