Researchers develop new device that uses solar energy to produce clean water

Solar Energy - Drinking Water at Sunset

New device leverages the power of solar energy to produce clean drinking water Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed a new device that is capable of drawing clean water from air. While the device is still in very early prototype stages, the research team has expressed that it shows great promise. According to researchers, the device makes use of solar energy, which is used to power chemical reactions within the device itself in order to collect water molecules. Early tests show…

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Toyota to use artificial intelligence to research fuel cells

Fuel Cells Research - Toyota to use AI

New project will leverage the power of artificial intelligence to improve fuel cells Toyota has taken a strong liking to hydrogen fuel cells in recent years. The automaker has already launched its first fuel cell vehicle, called the Mirai, and intends to use fuel cell technology well into the future. The problem with fuel cells, however, is that they are expensive and they have efficiency issues that make them less viable than conventional engines. The Toyota Research Institute intends to address these problems, with the help of artificial intelligence. Use…

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MIT researchers seek to understand price reductions in solar energy

MIT research team awarded $1.3 million grant through SunShot Initiative Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have been awarded a $1.3 million grant from the Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative. The grant will be used to fund the study of why the cost of solar energy has been going down so rapidly. The study will also determine how costs will continue to fall in the future. The solar sector has been experiencing tremendous growth in recent years, and this is partly due to the falling cost of photovoltaic…

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Range anxiety is proving to be a problem for electric vehicles

Lacking efficiency is slowing the adoption of clean vehicles Electric vehicles are gaining momentum throughout the world, but these environmentally friendly cars still face one major challenge. “Range anxiety” may be preventing consumers from purchasing electric vehicles. A new study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Santa Fe Institute highlights the issues associated with the efficiency of electric vehicles. The capability of batteries has created some skepticism among consumers, many of whom would opt to purchase more conventional vehicles rather than those equipped with battery systems. Study shows…

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Tesla and Toyota rank highly in their support for renewable energy and clean technology

Automakers win high ranking from MIT Technology Review Tesla Motors and Toyota are considered two of the “smartest” companies in the world, partly due to their focus on renewable energy, according to the MIT Technology Review. The magazine is published by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Every year, the magazine chooses 50 companies that best combine innovative technology with an effective business model. This year, Tesla and Toyota were the only two automakers to make the cut. Recently, these two companies have begun winning a significant amount of praise for…

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MIT researchers develop new fuel cell catalysts that are less expensive and more efficient

New catalysts could be a major boon for hydrogen fuel cells Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), have created new catalysts that could serve as a major boon for fuel cells. These catalysts are said to be less expensive and more efficient than their conventional counterparts, which may be good news for fuel cells, as the catalysts would finally make these energy systems more affordable. Developing inexpensive catalysts has been a priority for researchers focused on fuel cells for some time. Catalysts are comprised of metal carbides rather…

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MIT researchers develop new technology to benefit solar energy

New solar panels are highly efficient and can be used to build solar towers Scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have produced new, highly efficient solar panels. The scientists believe that these MIT researchers develop new technology to benefit solar energy are capable of tracking the movement of the sun as it travels throughout the sky. This means that the panels have a greater potential to generate electrical power by gathering sunlight. The panels have been designed for use in solar towers and may help unlock a brighter…

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Team of scientists find a way to make hydrogen fuel cells less expensive and more efficient

New catalyst is capable of improving water electrolysis Scientists from the Skoltech Institute of Science and Technology, the University of Texas at Austin, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have developed a new catalyst that may be able to improve the performance of hydrogen fuel cells. The catalyst has shown that it can improve the efficiency of water electrolysis, which is the process through which hydrogen is produced. While more work needs to be done, the scientists believe that the catalyst could vastly improve the capabilities of fuel cell systems…

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MIT researchers develop new material that may improve the solar energy space

New material can be used to store heat produced by solar energy systems and the sun itself Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed a new material that can store heat generate by solar energy systems. With solar power becoming more popular, researchers throughout the world have been working to find ways to make this form of energy more efficient and add value to solar power systems that will take form in the future. The new material could be used to ensure that heat generated by solar…

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Microbial fuel cells could solve the waste management problem in the US

Wastewater represents an untapped energy resource for the US A great deal of potential energy is wasted in the U.S. due to the country’s sewage system. Wastewater contains approximately 10 times the electrical power that is needed to process it, but the U.S. does not currently focus on converting this wastewater into energy. As much as 3% of the country’s energy is spent on processing wastewater without getting any kind of return in terms of electrical power. Microbial fuel cells may be the solution to this problem, as they can…

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Solar energy discovery could lead to power generated in the dark

Scientists make new solar power breakthrough. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard University scientists have developed a method that will allow for solar energy to be stored in molecules that can be used to provide homes with water, heat, or can even be utilized for cooking. The molecules are environmentally friendly and can continually store heat. Despite their awesome discovery, scientists are still far from being able to build this amazing machine with never ending heat storage capabilities that can be used incessantly over and over again without emitting…

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World’s first airborne wind energy system goes live in Alaska

Airborne wind turbine is now operational in Fairbanks The world’s first airborne wind turbine has begun operation in Fairbanks, Alaska. The turbine is designed by Altaeros Energies, which is a startup spun off from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The turbine itself is called the BAT-Buoyant Airborne Turbine and is meant to over some 1,000 feet off the ground in order to generate electrical power. The turbine will be in operation for approximately 18 months as developers study its energy generation capabilities. Airborne turbines are simple in concept, but present…

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MIT researchers make a breakthrough in solar energy

Researchers publish study focused on organic materials and their use in photovoltaic modules Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have released a new study that shows that “living materials” can be used to conduct electricity and emit different colors of light. This new discovery could have major implications for the solar energy sector. The study exists as a proof of concept, allowing researchers to highlight the possible future uses of growing photovoltaic modules rather than having to manufacture these modules. The study suggests that a new era of highlight…

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Five energy efficient building materials for 2014

2014 is expected to be the deciding year for green building industry The ongoing expansion of green commercial real estate construction will be more apparent this year. Energy efficient homes will become the norm, inundating the real estate industry like never before. The growing stress to build energy efficient homes will obviously have a telling effect on the demand of energy efficient building materials. Here are the six cutting edge building materials that will remain in-demand in 2014. Its been a year or more since green building hit the mainstream.…

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Renewable energy patents growing at a rapid pace

Number of renewable energy and clean technology patents is on the rise The number of patents concerning renewable energy and its associated technologies has been on the rise recently. Over the past ten years, patent filings have spiked, largely due to breakthroughs in technology and an increased focus on renewable energy that many countries have adopted. A new study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Sante Fe Institute aims to shed some insight on this increasingly common trend and highlight the technologies that countries seem to favor within…

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New materials could be a boon for hydrogen fuel cells

New family of materials could lead to benefits for hydrogen fuel cells Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have discovered a new family of materials that could provide enhanced performance of a reaction known as oxygen evolution. This reaction is key in effective energy storage and delivery and a better understanding of this reaction could lead to major benefits in fuel cell energy systems and lithium-air batteries. The materials discovered by researchers are called double perovskites. Pervoskites are abundant Perovskites are a variant of a mineral that is…

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