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Can artificial photosynthesis lead to clean energy?

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As many of you already know plants can harvest energy directly from the sun in the process of photosynthesis. There are many ongoing scientific research with the aim to mimic this ability from plants and harness the sun's energy for clean, storable, efficient energy.

If this can be achieved, it would open plethora of new possibilities within the clean, renewable energy sector. 

This is because our Sun is practically unlimited source of energy, in fact it has been estimated that the amount of energy that hits the earth in one hour is enough to meet our planet's energy needs for an entire year.

This form of synthetic photosynthesis would allow storing energy easily, without requiring bulky batteries, and thus dramatically improve humans' ability to power society cleanly and efficiently.

Last Updated on Thursday, 24 June 2021 11:17

WePower- Innovation combining renewable energy and the world of crypto

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Most of you know about the bitcoin and the basics of the crypto story. But you may still wonder what crypto and renewable energy have in common. Well the answer is plenty if you take a closer look at the innovative approach offered by WePower.

This is platform connecting energy suppliers, corporate buyers and energy producers for easy, direct green energy transactions.

WePower enables renewable energy producers to raise capital by issuing their own energy tokens. These tokens represent energy they commit to produce and deliver.

Energy tokenization standardizes simplifies and opens globally currently existing energy investment ecosystem. As a result energy producers can trade directly with the green energy buyers (consumers and investors) and raise capital by selling energy upfront, at below market rates.

Last Updated on Monday, 19 April 2021 05:33

What about the use of foldable technology in solar panels?

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Solar energy is rapidly becoming the most popular source of green, renewable energy. There are still some issues regarding the solar panel cost-efficiency and available technologies but science is constantly developing new technologies. Can foldable technology be the one widely used in solar panels?

When we think about solar panels we have this image of an rigid, flat panels and as such they are difficult in terms of storage and integration into everyday appliances.  Now, it would be a completely different perspective if we could somehow make solar cells foldable.

We have all seen foldable mobile phone screens and this research is getting more and more momentum. Could this technology be also used in solar panels?

At this point, the conductors used in solar cells lack flexibility thus creating a big obstacle to creation of fully foldable solar cell. As Professor Il Jeon of Pusan National University, Korea, says, "Unlike merely flexible electronics, foldable devices are subject to much harsher deformations, with folding radii as small as 0.5 mm. This is not possible with conventional ultra-thin glass substrates and metal oxide transparent conductors, which can be made flexible but never fully foldable."

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 March 2021 11:38

Electrical generation by U.S. wind and solar set new record

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Electrical generation by U.S. wind and solar set new records in 2020. In fact, it was 16.7% greater in 2020 than a year earlier, according to a SUN DAY Campaign analysis of new data just released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Similarly, annual electrical production by all renewable energy sources combined (i.e., biomass, geothermal, hydropower, solar, wind) reached an all-time high last year and provided more than a fifth of the nation's electrical output.

The latest issue of EIA's "Electric Power Monthly" (with data through December 31, 2020) also reveals that solar-generated electricity - including distributed (e.g., rooftop) solar - expanded by 24.1% (compared to 2019) and provided almost 3.3% of the nation’s total. Wind grew by 14.1% and accounted for 8.3% of total generation. No other energy sources experienced similarly high growth rates.

During the year, electrical generation by geothermal energy and hydropower also increased - by 9.4% and 1.1% respectively, but that from biomass fell by 2.5%. While total U.S. electrical generation from all sources decreased by 2.7% - due at least in part to the Covid-19 pandemic, the electrical output by the combination of renewables increased by over 9.2%. Collectively, renewables provided 20.6% of the country's total electrical output - up from 18.3% a year earlier. In fact, renewables modestly surpassed an EIA forecast, issued just two weeks ago, of 20.0% of U.S. electricity coming from green sources in 2020.

Last Updated on Thursday, 25 February 2021 10:32

New, Cheap Electric Energy Storage System Like Pumped Hydro but Subterranean

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Pumped Hydro Compressed Air Energy Storage (PHCAES) is a new system that can deliver stored energy at two to three cents per kilowatt-hour. This cost, far lower than that of lithium batteries, is similar to Pumped Hydro Energy Storage (PHES), a proven technology. Although it has many similarities to PHES, PHCAES has significant advantages over PHES -- including lower capital costs and significantly less land space required.

Like PHES, PHCAES uses a ground-level water reservoir and a power plant. The difference is in the pressure reservoirs. Whereas PHES uses a high elevation water reservoir to create a water pressure head, PHCAES uses a depleted underground well (gas/oil/water) that contains a reservoir of water along with high-pressure air to create its water pressure head. Both PHES and PHCAES pump/reverse water flow between the surface water reservoir and their respective high- pressure head reservoirs through a power plant to either store or produce electric power. See figure 1.

Capital costs will be lower for PHCAES because this system uses an existing well compared to constructing a sizeable elevated water reservoir for PHES. PHCAES stores energy at a much higher pressure, therefore requiring a five times smaller surface water reservoir than PHES for the same amount of energy stored.

Last Updated on Monday, 11 January 2021 06:39

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