Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New research shows EU how to hit Kyoto target

23.07.2003


High temperature superconductor (HTS) devices could help the EU reduce its CO2 emissions by up to 52 million tonnes, equivalent to 65 per cent of its Kyoto Protocol commitment.



Teemu Hartikainen, Jorma Lehtonen and Risto Mikkonen from Tampere University of Technology, Finland have worked out how much European GHG emissions would be reduced if these devices were introduced. Their findings are published today (23 July) in the Institute of Physics journal Superconductor Science and Technology.

Using HTS in motors improves their efficiency so machines use up less electrical energy, thus reducing the GHG emissions from electricity production. HTS devices can approximately halve power losses, as superconducting materials – unlike conventional devices – have practically no resistance, which is the property which causes energy to be wasted as excess heat. However, superconductors need to be kept cold so use up energy in refrigeration.


Risto Mikkonen and his team wanted to find out the efficiency level and power range that would be necessary for HTS devices to be competitive against conventional devices. Energy production is the biggest source of GHG emissions, so they focussed on this. They studied what would happen to GHS emissions from the Finnish electric power grid if all the existing conventional transformers, generators and synchronous motors (which deliver large amounts of steady power) in Finland were replaced by HTS ones, taking into consideration the production and consumption of electricity.

“To find out how competitive superconducting devices would be, we worked out their break-even power, using generally accepted economical and technological estimates, and carried out our GHG emission analysis,” says Teemu Hartikainen.

The break-even power is the minimum power needed for the devices to become commercially viable. Working at their calculated break-even power for HTS devices on the Finnish electric power grid, emissions could go down by the equivalent of 0.8 to 1.55 million tonnes of CO2 per year – which is one to two per cent of Finland’s total GHG emissions. Expanding the results to the whole of the EU, the reduction would be equivalent of 27 to 53 million tonnes of CO2, which is 33 to 65 per cent of the EU’s Kyoto commitment (to reduce GHG emissions by eight per cent from 1990 levels between 2008 and 2012).

The team used a market penetration model based on the write-off rate of present machinery, and calculated that it would take at least 20 years to achieve just half of this reduction potential. HTS devices are promising not only for environmental reasons but also are commercially attractive. Compared to their conventional counterparts, they are less sensitive to load variations, they are more stable, smaller, lighter and less noisy. These features would be especially useful for moving systems, like those on boats, trains or aeroplanes.

“Our results will interest device manufactures who are constantly seeking new developments in the electric power sector,” said the head of superconductivity unit at Tampere University of Technology, Risto Mikkonen. “Superconducting devices could help the EU reduce its emissions of greenhouse gases. Although it will take some time to introduce this new technology, the environmental benefits could accelerate its commercialisation.”

Michelle Cain | Institute of Physics
Further information:
http://www.iop.org/EJ/sust

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Innovative genetic tests for children with developmental disorders and epilepsy
11.07.2018 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

nachricht Oxygen loss in the coastal Baltic Sea is “unprecedentedly severe”
05.07.2018 | European Geosciences Union

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>