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Energy policies relating to alternative energy

Current energy policies are still based heavily on natural resources. Meanwhile, the trend is increasingly toward alternative resources, such as wind power.

It's only a matter of time before natural resources, such as petroleum, are depleted. Petroleum, a fossil-based energy source deposited across millions of years, is used to produce fuel or electricity. Taking stock of the fact that 260 billion barrels (one barrel = 159 liters) of oil were extracted over the last 11 years, it's evident that the world's petroleum resources will be depleted one day. New developments in solar or wind power are aimed at providing alternative energy sources that will enable us to maintain our current standard of living. Petroleum is also required by the chemical industry to manufacture special plastics.

The advantages and disadvantages of alternative energy sources

When discussing the subject of petroleum and alternative energy, one must bear the advantages and disadvantages in mind. Our resources are running short . Because we cannot count on petroleum for the future, there will come a time when everyone will rely on the efficiency of wind power and other alternative energy sources . Unlike petroleum, wind power can be managed to ensure that it constantly renews itself. Wind power meanwhile makes it possible to have enough resources to supply entire cities. Petroleum has the additional disadvantage of harming the environment through CO2 emissions. This has resulted in increasing demand for resources such as wind power. Wind power can be classified into different categories. A class 4 wind turbine can meanwhile provide resources in a much more efficient manner than petroleum resources for instance. In addition, unlike petroleum, resources such as wind power offer a decentralized energy supply. This means that in contrast to petroleum, the utilization of wind power does not require a large power plant. Instead, it makes "transporting" the energy easier and faster. Decentralized wind power entails a massive infrastructure change. Resources such as wind power certainly bring disadvantages when it comes to the environment, although they pale in comparison to the disasters that can result from petroleum. The utilization of our resources determines how we continue to maintain our standard of living. This makes it important to continue public discourse on the issues of wind power and petroleum.

Resource shortage

It's only a matter of time before there is no petroleum left. For this reason, from a resource standpoint we should already be moving toward heavy reliance on wind power instead of petroleum. After all, from a pure scientific point of view, new petroleum resources won't be available for millions of years. Unlike petroleum, wind power is a resource that will never run dry. In Germany alone, wind power is serving as a popular alternative resource to petroleum. The demand for wind power will increase in line with the consumption of petroleum. For this reason, it is imperative that we gradually move away from petroleum and make more use of wind power or other alternative energy resources. The environmental pollution caused by petroleum is reason enough for an environmentally-conscious society to use solar or wind power. In contrast to petroleum, wind power is significantly better for the environment and offers a unique resource balance.

Power and Electrical Engineering

This topic covers issues related to energy generation, conversion, transportation and consumption and how the industry is addressing the challenge of energy efficiency in general.

innovations-report provides in-depth and informative reports and articles on subjects ranging from wind energy, fuel cell technology, solar energy, geothermal energy, petroleum, gas, nuclear engineering, alternative energy and energy efficiency to fusion, hydrogen and superconductor technologies.

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Cooling buildings with solar heat

The cooling demand in buildings is particularly high when the sun shines intensely. Consequently, with solar air conditioning the heating demand and supply are usually consistent with each other. Closed chillers and open sorption methods for direct air conditioning ensure a comfortable indoor climate. The recently published BINE Themeninfo brochure entitled "Cooling with solar heat" presents concepts and technologies for air conditioning buildings.

Reducing the electricity requirement for cooling and air conditioning

26.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

Philippines’ microsatellite captures best-in-class high-resolution images

The High Precision Telescope (HPT) installed in the Philippine’s DIWATA-1 microsatellite jointly developed by Hokkaido University and other institutions has successfully captured images with a ground resolution of about 3 meters—a world-best for a 50 kg-class microsatellite.

DIWATA-1 was created under a collaborative initiative by Hokkaido University, Tohoku University, the Philippines’ Department of Science and Technology (DOST),...

22.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

OLED microdisplays in data glasses for improved human-machine interaction

The Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP has been developing various applications for OLED microdisplays based on organic semiconductors. By integrating the capabilities of an image sensor directly into the microdisplay, eye movements can be recorded by the smart glasses and utilized for guidance and control functions, as one example. The new design will be debuted at Augmented World Expo Europe (AWE) in Berlin at Booth B25, October 18th – 19th.

“Augmented-reality” and “wearables” have become terms we encounter almost daily. Both can make daily life a little simpler and provide valuable assistance for...

22.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

Photovoltaics and Photosynthesis

Pilot Plant at Lake Constance Combines Electricity and Crop Production

In 1981, an article by Prof. Adolf Goetzberger titled "Potatoes under the Collector" was published in the German magazine “Sonnenenergie”. The article proposed...

20.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

A major research effort into tomorrow's digital power grids

How will a future electricity grid manage the demands of induction cooking, charging electric cars and roof-installed solar panels? The answer is Smart Grids, which involves digitisation of the electricity grid. 

The aim of a new research centre called CINELDI (Centre for INtelligent ELectricity DIistribution - to empower the future Smart Grid) is to develop systems as...

20.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

The “MeBot” robotic wheelchair can climb steps on its own

Pittsburgh-based Human Engineering Research Lab (HERL) has developed the first ever robotic wheelchair – the MeBot – capable of climbing steps and mounting curbs on its own. The innovation came up against other systems at the first Cybathlon, which will take place at ETH Zürich in Kloten, Switzerland on October 8.

Steps and curbs currently pose a significant issue for wheelchair users. Even the most modern technologies are unable to surmount these obstacles automatically...

15.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

One-pot synthesis towards sulfur-based organic semiconductors

Scientists at Nagoya University have developed a short route to form various thiophene-fused polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) by simply heating mono-functionalized PAHs with sulfur.

Thiophene-fused polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are known to be useful as organic semiconductors due to their high charge transport properties....

15.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

Fraunhofer IWS scientists are now able to offer n-conductive polymers as processable paste

The Fraunhofer IWS has made another important step forward with respect to the research on n-conductive polymers for printed electronics. The Dresden scientists succeeded in modifying an n-conductive polymer, already synthesized in 2015, in such a way that it can now be processed as a paste and be printed in a three-dimensional manner.

At first sight, for many people conductive polymers are paradox, in particular, when we think of those plastics we are surrounded by in everyday life....

09.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

Super-resolution microscope builds 3-D images by mapping negative space

Scientists at The University of Texas at Austin have demonstrated a method for making three-dimensional images of structures in biological material under natural conditions at a much higher resolution than other existing methods. The method may help shed light on how cells communicate with one another and provide important insights for engineers working to develop artificial organs such as skin or heart tissue.

The research is described today in the journal Nature Communications.

06.09.2016 | nachricht Read more

Did you know that tempering helps with the production of glass bottles and ampoules for the pharmaceutical industry?

Cleanliness and professional processing are of utmost importance when it comes to production in the pharmaceutical industry. The special shape of glass bottles or ampoules for medication and tablets makes their manufacture something of a challenge.

The glass is formed under heat, which means there are residual thermal stresses and the glass is more likely to crack. For this reason, these thermal stresses...

06.09.2016 | nachricht Read more
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Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: OLED microdisplays in data glasses for improved human-machine interaction

The Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP has been developing various applications for OLED microdisplays based on organic semiconductors. By integrating the capabilities of an image sensor directly into the microdisplay, eye movements can be recorded by the smart glasses and utilized for guidance and control functions, as one example. The new design will be debuted at Augmented World Expo Europe (AWE) in Berlin at Booth B25, October 18th – 19th.

“Augmented-reality” and “wearables” have become terms we encounter almost daily. Both can make daily life a little simpler and provide valuable assistance for...

Im Focus: Artificial Intelligence Helps in the Discovery of New Materials

With the help of artificial intelligence, chemists from the University of Basel in Switzerland have computed the characteristics of about two million crystals made up of four chemical elements. The researchers were able to identify 90 previously unknown thermodynamically stable crystals that can be regarded as new materials. They report on their findings in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

Elpasolite is a glassy, transparent, shiny and soft mineral with a cubic crystal structure. First discovered in El Paso County (Colorado, USA), it can also be...

Im Focus: Complex hardmetal tools out of the 3D printer

For the first time, Fraunhofer IKTS shows additively manufactured hardmetal tools at WorldPM 2016 in Hamburg. Mechanical, chemical as well as a high heat resistance and extreme hardness are required from tools that are used in mechanical and automotive engineering or in plastics and building materials industry. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS in Dresden managed the production of complex hardmetal tools via 3D printing in a quality that are in no way inferior to conventionally produced high-performance tools.

Fraunhofer IKTS counts decades of proven expertise in the development of hardmetals. To date, reliable cutting, drilling, pressing and stamping tools made of...

Im Focus: Launch of New Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing

At AKL’16, the International Laser Technology Congress held in May this year, interest in the topic of process control was greater than expected. Appropriately, the event was also used to launch the Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing. The group provides a forum for representatives from industry and research to initiate pre-competitive projects and discuss issues such as standards, potential cost savings and feasibility.

In the age of industry 4.0, laser technology is firmly established within manufacturing. A wide variety of laser techniques – from USP ablation and additive...

Im Focus: New laser joining technologies at ‘K 2016’ trade fair

Every three years, the plastics industry gathers at K, the international trade fair for plastics and rubber in Düsseldorf. The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will also be attending again and presenting many innovative technologies, such as for joining plastics and metals using ultrashort pulse lasers. From October 19 to 26, you can find the Fraunhofer ILT at the joint Fraunhofer booth SC01 in Hall 7.

K is the world’s largest trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry. As in previous years, the organizers are expecting 3,000 exhibitors and more than...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

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