Category: Energy

GM, GE look to develop rare earth materials supply chain

Read the full story from the Associated Press.

General Motors and General Electric are looking at developing a supply chain of rare earth materials that help make electric vehicles and renewable energy equipment.

Bye-bye, batteries! Engineers release software for DIY battery-free electronics

Read the full story at Centered.

When playing a handheld video game, don’t you just want to keep going and going without worrying about replacing batteries? Now you can, thanks to Northwestern University computer engineers. 

They were on the team that developed a battery-free Game Boy that harvests solar energy and kinetic energy from the user’s button mashing to power the device. Now they introduced a platform to enable even novice programmers and hobbyists to build their own battery-free electronics.

Energy from waste: $6.8 million for cow-inspired biodigesters

Read the full story from the University of Michigan.

University of Michigan leads a collaboration of academic, municipal and private institutions to advance a renewable methane system.

Worth its salt: Ohio startup aims to lower energy storage costs with molten salt system

Read the full story in Centered.

Cleantech advancements sometimes feature emerging concepts like artificial intelligence or carbon-based nanomaterials. But Euclid, Ohio, advanced materials startup Cratus is using a more familiar material: salt.

Salts, highly heated until they’re practically liquid, are a critical piece of Cratus’ large-scale energy storage technologies. The startup is commercializing a high temperature molten salt thermal energy storage system that can be paired with any power or heat source, but it works particularly well with solar power and nuclear power generation, said founder Andy Sherman

University of Michigan, Northwestern University, Argonne to lead groundbreaking research and educational collaboration with bioenergy industry

Read the full story from Argonne National Laboratory.

The Integrated Biochemical and Electrochemical Technologies to Convert Organic Waste to Biopower collaboration has a workforce component that will bring new technologies to the bioenergy industry.

Brewing up energy savings

Read the full story and listen to the podcast episode from U.S. DOE.

The craft brewing industry accounts for almost a quarter of the $100 billion U.S. beer market. In this episode, the folks at Deschutes Brewery in Oregon take us through the energy-consuming process of making beer and how the Department of Energy’s Better Plants Program benefits the breweries through reducing energy and water costs.

Solar panels help French winemaker keep climate change at bay

Read the full story from Reuters.

A roof of solar panels shades Pierre Escudie as he inspects the last plump grapes to be harvested at his vineyard in southwest France, after a year of hard frosts and blistering heat that damaged many of his neighbours’ crops.

The solar panels insulate the grapes during periods of extreme cold and shield them from the sun’s harsh rays during heatwaves. The panels also rotate to allow more light to hit the vines on more overcast days.

App helps cold storage facilities improve energy use

Read the full story at Environment + Energy Leader.

Star Refrigeration is releasing an app that will help temperature-controlled storage facilities compare their energy use across the industry to help them find their most efficient use of power.

Power of the people

Read the full story in Notre Dame Magazine.

Patrick Regan is an international expert on the causes and prevention of civil wars and the politics of climate change. His work has been cited in more than 7,000 academic articles. But he left all that to start a solar energy company that employs former convicts.

Surging generation from solar, wind on track to push renewable market share to 30 percent by 2026

Read the full story from IEEFA.

Data for the first eight months of this year show that wind generation has risen more than 25 percent since 2019 (pushing its market share to almost 9 percent) while utility-scale solar generation has jumped 55 percent (pushing its market share to nearly 3 percent). Combined, wind and utility-scale solar generation has gone up by 76 million megawatt-hours (MWh)—a 31 percent increase—while coal and gas generation has fallen by 1.6 percent since 2019, reflecting the ongoing transition of electricity markets to renewable energy and away from fossil fuels.

But an even bigger surge in renewable generation is coming soon. IEEFA estimates that by the end of 2026—just five years from now—wind and utility-scale solar will generate roughly 850 million MWh of electricity annually, equal to more than 21 percent of total 2020 demand.

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