MIT Now Knows How to Get Clean Water out of a Gas Well

The transition from coal to natural gas is expected to significantly decrease carbon emissions. However, gas production poses its own environmental concerns. One of those is the problem of so-called “produced water”—large volumes of underground water with a lot of salts and minerals, that flow to the surface along with gas. This water must be somehow cleaned or otherwise disposed of. There are several processes available to perform this task, but most of them are expensive and quite inefficient. A new method developed at MIT could help solve the problem and produce clean water at relatively low cost. In the future it could also be used specifically at water purification plants, especially in developing countries. Continue reading MIT Now Knows How to Get Clean Water out of a Gas Well

Triangular Tokamaks are Better, Say Physicists

While an oxymoron (the letters “to” in “tokamak” stand for “torus”), a tokamak with triangular cross-section is actually better then a conventional circular one. Triangle-shaped coils are more effective in insuring plasma stability, which in turn leads to a higher density and more power. And more power in a fusion experiment brings us one step closer to a practical application of this new power source. And the strangest thing about it is that the advantages of this new form were discovered almost by accident. Continue reading Triangular Tokamaks are Better, Say Physicists

US Households Spend Record-High on Gasoline While Becoming More Efficient

EIA have calculated that an average american household spends almost 4% of its income on gasoline. While consumption figures are going down, prices go up: that accounts for the highest percentage of income spent on gasoline since 2008. Another notable trend is the increasing energy efficiency. Continue reading US Households Spend Record-High on Gasoline While Becoming More Efficient

MIT Undergraduate Working to Reduce Energy Waste in Fusion Reactors

MIT student Jake Jurewicz will be developing new simulation software for fusion reactors. Its purpose is to help engineers better understand where energy losses occur and, ultimately, to try and prevent them. If successful, this could open a way for a reactor to put out more energy that it consumes, therefore making fusion a viable alternative energy source. Continue reading MIT Undergraduate Working to Reduce Energy Waste in Fusion Reactors

New Graphene-Based Battery Takes Only Minutes to Charge

Battelle Memorial Institute has licensed the use of its Vor-X® graphene-based battery technology to Vorbeck Materials Corp. of Jessup, Md for use in electic vehicles, consumer electronics and medical devices. With this new tech, battery charge time could be potentially reduced to a mere fraction of what it is now. Continue reading New Graphene-Based Battery Takes Only Minutes to Charge

Ionic Liquid Processing Effectively Works With Mixed Biofuel Feedstocks

Scientists from Joint BioEnergy Institute, a research center led by Lawrence Berkeley Lab, have shown that ionic liquid can be used not only for treatment of individual biofuel feedstocks, but for multiple different feedstocks mixed into a blend as well. Continue reading Ionic Liquid Processing Effectively Works With Mixed Biofuel Feedstocks

An Alliance: 600 German Scientists Will Study Wind Energy

A new research association was formed yesterday at Berlin. Its mission: to coordinate the combined effort of more than 600 scientists from three major organizations toward a common goal of creating new and more efficient technologies for wind power plants. Researchers from the German Aerospace Center, the Center for Wind Energy Research of the universities of Oldenburg, Hanover and Bremen, and the Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy and Energy Systems Technology will look into possible ways to optimize wind turbines, particularly into smart rotor blades design. Continue reading An Alliance: 600 German Scientists Will Study Wind Energy

Lightweight and Safe Electric Car Under Development in Germany

German scientists and engineers are working on a project to create an electric car that would be at the same time lightweight and safe. While keeping the mass of a vehicle to minimum, researchers aim to provide the driver with the best possible level of protection. Visionary Mobility (Visio.M) concept car prototype can already pass some of the initial driving and chassis tests. Continue reading Lightweight and Safe Electric Car Under Development in Germany

EIA Released China Coal Consumption Figures: Almost as Much as the Rest of the World

According to the new release by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, China nowadays consumes almost as much coal as all other countries combined. Despite China being the world largest investor in renewable energy technologies ($52 billion invested in 2011 alone), Chinese economy is still, in essence, coal-powered. Continue reading EIA Released China Coal Consumption Figures: Almost as Much as the Rest of the World