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Environment

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

Image: Google Maps

August 14, 2008 According to Treehugger and The Business Standard, the US-based Clinton Foundation is currently in talks with the Indian government to undertake the world’s largest single location solar project. Costing around US$475 million and with an estimated output of 5,000MW (5 gigawatts), the Gujurat-based “Integrated Solar City” would rival even the biggest coal-fired power stations.  Read More

Carbon Capture and Storage slashes CO2 emissions into the atmosphere, but requires an incr...

Carbon capture and storage is a climate change mitigation technology characterized by sporadic and unreliable government support and plagued with accusations that it will worsen the environmental disaster it seeks to address. Yet, despite the negative stigma, CCS has been labeled by the IPCC and the Stern Report as an essential measure in reducing the impact of fossil fuels. Gizmag's Kyle Sherer takes a closer look.  Read More

Fuel cell breakthrough promises cheaper eco-friendly cars

A team of Australian scientists has developed a new fuel cell prototype that could pave the way for a generation of much cheaper, more fuel efficient fuel-cells for powering eco-friendly cars. The new fuel cells feature a new cathode made from a conducting polymer rather than the expensive cathodes used in existing fuel cells.  Read More

Solar energy system goes to market

SolarCraft has completed a 35.4 kilowatt solar energy system at the new Hamilton Marketplace Complex in Novato, California. The system will enable the new shopping center to generate enough clean electricity to spare the air nearly 31 tons of harmful greenhouse gases annually, equivalent to the air filtering of 6.2 acres of trees.  Read More

The solar windowpane

July 28, 2008 While rooftop solar panels have understandably been the main focus for household solar energy breakthroughs, Tokyo-based Nihon Telecommunication System Inc. has given householders another option to do their bit to help the planet by developing windowpanes with built-in photovoltaic cells.  Read More

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