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.
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.
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.
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.
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Roboticists at the University of California San Diego have developed flexible feet that can help robots walk up to 40 percent faster on uneven terrain such as pebbles and wood chips. The work has applications for search-and-rescue missions as well as space exploration.
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Most production plants today are still powered by alternating current. In the long term, however, research teams from the Fraunhofer Institutes for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA and Integrated Systems and Device Technology IISB would like to see industrial manufacturing shift to operating with direct current. In the collaborative research project DC-INDUSTRIE 2, these teams have joined forces with more than 30 partners to develop new power supply systems for industry. The idea is to link all of a factory’s electrical systems to an intelligent DC grid (Direct Current) so as to make electrical supply more energy-efficient, stable and flexible.
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Smart windows that automatically change colors depending on the intensity of sunlight are gaining attention as they can reduce energy bills by blocking off sun's visible rays during summer. But what about windows that change colors depending on the humidity outside during the monsoon season or on hot days of summer?
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Researchers from the Skoltech Center for Energy Science and Technology (CEST) visualized the formation of a solid electrolyte interphase on battery-grade carbonaceous electrode materials using in situ atomic force microscopy (AFM). This will help researchers design and build batteries with higher performance and durability.
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Professor Dirk Bähre and his research team at Saarland University have developed a non-contact method of transforming metal parts fabricated by a 3D printer into high-precision technical components for specialist applications. The novel method enables them to process parts made from strong, lightweight metals to produce precision-finished components with complex geometries and dimensional tolerances of a few thousandths of a millimetre. The team of manufacturing technologists combine metal 3D printing and electrochemical machining (ECM).
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Solid state batteries are of great interest to the electric vehicle industry. Scientists at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, and Xi'an Jiaotong University, China now present a new way of taking this promising concept closer to large-scale application. An interlayer, made of a spreadable, 'butter-like' material helps improve the current density tenfold, while also increasing performance and safety.
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UMass Amherst team introduces high-performing 'green' electronic sensor
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Biochemists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) have used a standard electron cryo-microscope to achieve surprisingly good images that are on par with those taken by far more sophisticated equipment. They have succeeded in determining the structure of ferritin almost at the atomic level. Their results were published in the journal "PLOS ONE".
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New insight into the spin behavior in an exotic state of matter puts us closer to next-generation spintronic devices
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Kiel physics team observed extremely fast electronic changes in real time in a special material class
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