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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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European Programme to promote renewable energy

The European Commission has accepted EVE, the Basque Energy Entity, and Eolicas de Euskadi within the programme to promote renewable energy. The European Union is aware of the effort EVE is doing to obtain 12 % of primary energy from renewable energy. This entity has been accepted in the programme Campaign for Take-Off, together with Eolicas de Euskadi. The programme has been designed by the European Commission and as the first step they want to create a Renewable Energy Partnership. This partnership 04.10.2002 | nachricht Read more

Circuit transfers four times more power out of shakes and rattle

Penn State engineers have optimized an energy harvesting circuit so that it transfers four times more electrical power out of vibration – the ordinary shakes and rattles generated by human motion or machine operation. Using their laboratory prototype, which was developed from off-the-shelf parts, the Penn State researchers can generate 50 milliwatts. Although they haven’t tried it, they believe the motion of a runner could be harnessed to generate enough power to run a portable electron 24.09.2002 | nachricht Read more

150-ton magnet pulls world toward new energy source

MIT team is part of project A 150-ton magnet developed in part by MIT engineers is pulling the world closer to nuclear fusion as a potential source of energy. Over the last three years "we’ve shown that we can design a magnet of this size and complexity and make it work," said Joseph V. Minervini, a senior research engineer at MIT’s Plasma Science and Fusion Center (PSFC) and Department of Nuclear Engineering. Minervini leads the MIT team involved in the project. 24.09.2002 | nachricht Read more

New system for storing lithium-polymer energy

The basque technology centre CIDETEC is working on a project about lithium-polymer energy with the collaboration of the companies CEGASA and ZIGOR. Actually, they are in the first stage of the project. Initially, they analysed the structure, design and development of different electrode materials with multiple characteristics (cathode and anode) to use lithium-polymer in batteries. The results of the project enabled the development of a lab-scale prototype of a rechargeable 09.09.2002 | nachricht Read more

Wisconsin team engineers hydrogen from biomass

In the search for a nonpolluting energy source, hydrogen is often cited as a potential source of unlimited clean power. But hydrogen is only as clean as the process used to make it. Currently, most hydrogen is made from fossil fuels like natural gas using multi-step and high-temperature processes. Now, chemical engineers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have developed a new process that produces hydrogen fuel from plants. This source of hydrogen is non-toxic, non-flammable and can be 29.08.2002 | nachricht Read more

NIST Team Reports Method to Characterize New Insulating Materials for Microelectronics

Advance Should Speed Semiconductor Industry Search Researchers from the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) reported today they have developed methods for characterizing key structural features of porous films being eyed as insulators for the ultrathin metal wires that will connect millions of devices on future microprocessors and increase processor speed. The advance, reported today at the American Chemical Society’s national meeting 27.08.2002 | nachricht Read more

LECs may be future of flat panel color displays

In the search for low-cost color displays that do not drain a computer’s battery, the polymer light-emitting electrochemical cell (LEC) may be the next answer to the problem, according to an international team of electrical engineers. "The color-variable LEC can provide a solution to simple, low cost color displays," Cheng Huang, graduate student in electrical engineering at Penn State told attendees today (Aug. 20) at the 224th American Chemical Society annual meeting in Boston.
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Obstacles fall to feasibility of hybrid fuel cell vehicle

A series of obstacles fell before the onslaught of a Penn State engineering graduate class as they tackled and found solutions to all the barriers preventing development of a hybrid fuel cell automobile using hydrogen fuel cells and battery storage. "The professors asked the class to solve the problem of hydrogen odorization," says Jamie Weston, graduate student in energy and geoenvironmental engineering. "We quickly came up with a solution and, took the rest of the course to develop our so 20.08.2002 | nachricht Read more

Nanometer-Scale Light Source is First to Show Single-Molecule Electroluminescence

Using photon emissions from individual molecules of silver, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have created what may be the world’s smallest electroluminescent light source. Believed to be the first demonstration of electroluminescence from individual molecules, the work could lead to new types of nanometer-scale optical interconnects, high-resolution optical microscopy, nanometer-scale lithography and other applications that require very small light sources. And becaus 12.08.2002 | nachricht Read more

Nanoparticles used in solar energy conversion

An enormous source of clean energy is available to us. We see it almost every day. It’s just a matter of harnessing it. The problem with solar energy is that it has not been inexpensive enough in the past. David Kelley, professor of chemistry at Kansas State University, developed a new type of nanoparticle -- a tiny chemical compound far too small to be seen with the naked eye -- that may reap big dividends in solar power. Kelley’s team is studying the properties and tech 09.08.2002 | nachricht Read more
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Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Small particles, big effects: How graphene nanoparticles improve the resolution of microscopes

Conventional light microscopes cannot distinguish structures when they are separated by a distance smaller than, roughly, the wavelength of light. Superresolution microscopy, developed since the 1980s, lifts this limitation, using fluorescent moieties. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research have now discovered that graphene nano-molecules can be used to improve this microscopy technique. These graphene nano-molecules offer a number of substantial advantages over the materials previously used, making superresolution microscopy even more versatile.

Microscopy is an important investigation method, in physics, biology, medicine, and many other sciences. However, it has one disadvantage: its resolution is...

Im Focus: Atoms don't like jumping rope

Nanooptical traps are a promising building block for quantum technologies. Austrian and German scientists have now removed an important obstacle to their practical use. They were able to show that a special form of mechanical vibration heats trapped particles in a very short time and knocks them out of the trap.

By controlling individual atoms, quantum properties can be investigated and made usable for technological applications. For about ten years, physicists have...

Im Focus: Images from NJIT's big bear solar observatory peel away layers of a stellar mystery

An international team of scientists, including three researchers from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), has shed new light on one of the central mysteries of solar physics: how energy from the Sun is transferred to the star's upper atmosphere, heating it to 1 million degrees Fahrenheit and higher in some regions, temperatures that are vastly hotter than the Sun's surface.

With new images from NJIT's Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO), the researchers have revealed in groundbreaking, granular detail what appears to be a likely...

Im Focus: New opportunities in additive manufacturing presented

Fraunhofer IFAM Dresden demonstrates manufacturing of copper components

The Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM in Dresden has succeeded in using Selective Electron Beam Melting (SEBM) to...

Im Focus: New Pitt research finds carbon nanotubes show a love/hate relationship with water

Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are valuable for a wide variety of applications. Made of graphene sheets rolled into tubes 10,000 times smaller than a human hair, CNTs have an exceptional strength-to-mass ratio and excellent thermal and electrical properties. These features make them ideal for a range of applications, including supercapacitors, interconnects, adhesives, particle trapping and structural color.

New research reveals even more potential for CNTs: as a coating, they can both repel and hold water in place, a useful property for applications like printing,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

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