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.

EU sets worldwide standard for solar cells

Increased use of renewable sources is central to the European Commission’s energy policy. The EU has set itself the goal of doubling renewable sources’ share of overall energy production to 12% by 2010. It was a step in the right direction when the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) voted to adopt procedures proposed by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC). These actions would establish the traceability of photovoltaic (PV) solar cell references to SI standards. Thi

New diode could enable faster, more efficient electronics

Engineers have designed a new diode that transmits more electricity than any other device of its kind, and the inspiration for it came from technology that is 40 years old.

Unlike other diodes in its class, called tunnel diodes, the new diode is compatible with silicon, so manufacturers could easily build it into mainstream electronic devices such as cell phones and computers.

Industry has long sought to marry tunnel diodes with conventional electronics as a means to simplify incre

Rating the performance of residential fuel cells

Residential fuel cells sound almost too good to be true. Take a hydrocarbon fuel such as natural gas, use a catalyst to extract hydrogen from it, react the hydrogen with air and, presto, you have a home power plant!

As the hydrogen and the oxygen in the air combine, they produce electricity. The primary “waste products” of the whole process are water and heat. But that’s not all! The “waste” heat can be captured to provide space or water heating for the home.

Residential fuel

Smart electric grid of the future is in development

Plans are underway to test new system

The nations current electric grid system will not work in the future with solar and wind farms providing substantial but intermittent power over long distances.

By 2050, it will take between 15 and 20 Terawatts (TW) of electric power to supply the North American economy. A little under 7 TW is currently used, with most of that consumed in the United States. The “Smart Electric Grid of the Future” must be able to efficiently and securely

Long-term natural gas supplies should meet growing demand in coming decades, study finds

Sudden price spikes have led to speculation that the United States is facing a critical shortage of natural gas. But a new study by Stanford University’s Energy Modeling Forum (EMF) concludes that gas supplies are likely to meet growing demand in coming decades, if policy-makers are able to strike a balance between environmental protection and the need for new energy sources.

“Recent volatile natural gas prices do not foreshadow a pending, long-term crisis in future natural gas supplie

New technique could lead to widespread use of solar power

Researchers envision mass-produced rolls of material that converts sunlight to electricity

Princeton electrical engineers have invented a technique for making solar cells that, when combined with other recent advances, could yield a highly economical source of energy.

The results, reported in the Sept. 11 issue of Nature, move scientists closer to making a new class of solar cells that are not as efficient as conventional ones, but could be vastly less expensive and more ver

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