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Archive for the ‘Science & Technology’ Category

JFE Quick Charging Station for electric car

Posted by surfingall on May 9, 2010


When it comes to saving the nature from natural and man made calamities, electric cars will play a huge role in it, at least one day. Because the electric cars will provide zero harm to the environment but they have one small problem and that is “recharging”.

Recharging has always been a problem with all our portable devices and gadgets like mobiles. The recharging process can take some time with ordinary devices, like just think how much time does it take to fully recharge a single electric car? It takes a lot more time than charging your cell phone, that’s for sure. This is the main reason for not using electric cars instead of ordinary cars. Electric cars could be used for smaller distances, such as going to the shop but not for a long hour drive.

Well people from JFE Engineering Corp might have solution to this recharging problem, and that solution is called charging station. This Charging station should put an end to long recharge time of your car by allowing it to be recharged to 50% in only three minutes. With this speed of charging you’ll save a lot of your time and money with these super charger stations. But to use these chargers, you’ll have to make certain modifications to your cars software and system.

One more thing to be noted is, these stations are not cheap and one of these could cost $63,000, so they aren’t going to be widely used, at least not yet.

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Cheaper Solar Cells

Posted by surfingall on May 5, 2010


A simple chemical treatment could replace expensive antireflective solar cell coatings, bringing down the cost of crystalline silicon panels. The treatment, a one-step dip in a chemical bath, creates a highly antireflective layer of black silicon on the surface of silicon wafers, and it would cost just pennies per watt, say researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). They’ve used it to create black silicon solar cells that match the efficiency of conventional silicon cells on the market.

The crystalline silicon wafers used to make today’s solar cells are treated to create a textured surface, then coated with an antireflective layer, usually silicon nitride, using high-vacuum processes. This additional layer increases the value of a solar cell by improving its efficiency–it suppress reflection..

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Google Invests $38.8 Million In Wind Technology

Posted by surfingall on May 5, 2010


Google’s checkbook is wide open this week. Not only did it buy 3D interface startup BumpTop, and invest in mobile payments company Corduro, but it also just put $38.8 million into a wind farm in North Dakota. The $190 million project is being put together by NextEra Energy Resources, will produce 170 megawatts of power (enough for 55,000 homes), and will be called Peace Garden Wind. Cue the Zen meditation harp.

When it comes to renewable energy investments, Google uses a lot of solar energy itself, and has invested in startups such as AltaRock (geothermal), eSolar, and Makani Power (high-altitude wind). But this is the first time it has ever invested in an energy project rather than in a company.

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Platinum-Free Fuel Cell

Posted by surfingall on May 4, 2010


Fuel cells are, in principle, the most efficient way to convert hydrogen fuel into electricity. But they require expensive catalysts such as platinum to split hydrogen into ions and electrical current. Cheaper metals simply can’t withstand the harsh acidic environment of the fuel cell. Now researchers in China have developed a fuel cell that uses a new membrane material to operate in alkaline conditions, eliminating the need for an expensive catalyst. The power output of the new prototype, which uses nickel as a catalyst, is still relatively low, but it provides a first demonstration of a potentially much less expensive fuel cell.

Conventional fuel cells consist of two electrodes coated with a platinum catalyst that splits hydrogen fuel..

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A Camera from a Sheet of Fiber

Posted by surfingall on May 4, 2010


Textiles and the fibers that compose them are experiencing a sort of high-tech renaissance lately. Researchers are finding ways to turn silk into sensors by adding biological molecules to it, and turn cotton sheets into electronic fabric by bathing them in a solution of nanotubes. The idea is to use the electronic textiles, which are flexible and can be worn comfortably, to sense such things as the blood of a soldier or pathogens circulating in the air.

Now researchers at MIT have integrated a collection of light sensors into polymer fibers, creating a new type of camera. Yoel Fink, a professor of materials sciences and engineering and the lead researcher..

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India Bags World’s Biggest CFL Deal

Posted by surfingall on May 1, 2010


In an effort to prevent 40 million tonnes of carbon from entering the atmosphere, India bagged the world’s largest carbon credit project that will help replace 400 million incandescent light bulbs with energy saving CFL bulbs, and that too at dirt-cheap prices, in a year. The project will allow the government, investors, discoms and CFL manufacturers to sell CFLs at Rs 15 each, instead of the current rate of Rs 100, reports The Times Of India.

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Tireless diving robot feeds on the ocean’s heat

Posted by surfingall on April 29, 2010


NASA has unveiled an ocean-going robot that really can go on forever. It is the first of its kind to be fuelled entirely by renewable energy.This month the agency revealed that SOLO-TREC, a wax-filled buoy powered only by the temperature differences in the water around it, has been tirelessly diving to depths of 500 metres off the Hawaiian coast three times a day since November 2009. The float gathers data on temperature and salinity to improve studies of ocean currents.

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Solar Metamaterials

Posted by surfingall on April 29, 2010


In an advance that could lead to solar cells that more fully utilize sunlight, researchers at Caltech have designed materials that can bend visible light at unusual but precise angles, no matter its polarization. The scientists hope the materials are a step toward perfectly transparent solar-cell coatings that would direct all the sun’s rays into the active area to improve solar power output.

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