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c-Si solar cell layers

Currently, photovoltaic modules in solar panels employ petroleum-based plastics as a protective backing, increasing their overall carbon footprint and maintaining a reliance the fossil fuel economy. To free solar power from the uncertainties of oil prices, and to help make them a truly green power source, BioSolar has developed bio-based components that are ready to replace the backsheet, substrate and superstrate components of solar panels. The materials have a lifespan of 20-25 years, and, most importantly, they are 25% cheaper to manufacture than the plastic alternative.  Read More

GE Hybrid locomotive protoype in Chicago

GE Transportation will parade its Evolution Hybrid locomotive prototype at the RSI Railway Technology Exhibition in Chicago later this month. Promising significant fuel and emissions savings, the diesel-electric hybrid technology captures and stores the energy generated by braking a 207 ton train and delivers it back to the propulsion system in the form of an on-demand, 2000 horsepower boost.  Read More

Aquarius intelligent automated sprinkler design

Looking more like an alien spacecraft than a sprinkler, Aquarius is an irrigation control system designed by Aydin Oztoprak and Ozgur Ruhi Ulvan. Solar powered and remote managed, Aquarius automatically adjusts its water flow depending on the soil, crop and weather conditions, making it one very intelligent piece of eco-friendly water design.  Read More

Envision Solar Tree

The University of California in San Diego (UCSD) is undertaking an unusual forestry project on the roof of two of its parking garages. The “Solar Trees” being constructed on the roofs will comprise steel components fitted with a canopy of Kyocera photovoltaic modules to provide solar energy for the university.  Read More

Proposed solar system - US Airways Center, Arizona

The US Airways Center in Arizona, home to NBA team the Phoenix Suns, will soon be going green with the announcement of a new solar power project. The system is expected to be operational in 2009 and will utilize 1,125 Suntech panels, cover approximately 18,000 square feet and produce 331,233 kilowatt-hours of clean energy each year.  Read More

Arctic ice set for another all-time low

August 30, 2008 The global warming debate will get even hotter in the near future with the news that current observations from ESA's Envisat satellite suggest that the extent of Arctic polar sea-ice may this year shrink to a level very close to that of last year's record minimum ice cover. Envisat observations from mid-August depict that a new record of low sea-ice coverage could be reached in a matter of weeks. This animation is a series of mosaics of the Arctic Ocean created from images acquired between early June and mid-August 2008 from the Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar (ASAR) instrument aboard Envisat. The dark grey colour represents ice-free areas while blue represents areas covered with sea ice. The image at right shows sea-ice coverage as of mid-August 2008 with the red line indicating the all-time minimum Arctic sea-ice coverage in September 2007. Anyone know of any DIY Ark-building courses?  Read More

August 24, 2008 Canadian-based Day4 Energy has announced a research breakthrough that could see its solar cell production costs reduced by up to 25%. The new design and manufacturing process for its Generation II solar cells promises efficiency of up to 19% on mono-crystalline and 18% on multi-crystalline silicon materials (the average output of current solar cells is around 15%).  Read More

Greencores 10200 solar airconditioner

It's an idea that makes perfect sense - when it's hot, the sun is out, so why not utilize that energy to help cool down. Californian based Greencore has developed a hybrid solar-powered air conditioning system for both fixed and mobile applications which can cool a room up to 600 square feet in size using a single 170 watt solar panel, or switch to using power from the grid when necessary.  Read More

In photosynthesis, protons and electrons would be converted to carbohydrates for the plant...

An international team of researchers led by Monash University has used manganese, a chemical involved in photosynthesis, to split water into hydrogen and oxygen using only sunlight and an electrical potential of 1.2 volts. Scientists claim the process could provide a clean, cheap method of producing hydrogen for fuel cells and energy generation.  Read More

Solar Powered Necktie

It might not be the most chic of clothing items, but form takes a back-seat to function with this solar powered necktie. Designed to charge a mobile phone, the concept tie was created by researchers at Iowa State University (ISU) whilst experimenting with uses for photovoltaic (PV) textiles to create smart garments.  Read More

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