Barack Obama Announces Another 12 billion for Energy RD

first_img Monday, President Obama announced that money would be provided for research at the national laboratories for the Department of Energy. Additionally, grants will be available for those wishing to do research in renewable energy. Areas such as wind, solar, biofuels and hydrogen will be encouraged. Even nuclear energy and questions about storing carbon dioxide underground will be eligible for grant funding under the new rules. The funding is in addition to tax credits and spending approved in the recently passed economic stimulus package.Some of the technologies and companies that are like to benefit from energy R&D funding include:* Serious Materials, which uses energy efficient materials to make drywall.an energy-draining process of mixing raw materials in a wet slurry and then using outside energy to dry it, the company has a recipe that makes use of chemicals — and their reactions — for the drying heat necessary.* Solyndra, a solar power start-up. This company is receiving the first Department of Energy loan given out in years. Instead of using silicon, Solyndra manufactures soalr cells out of copper, indium, gallium and selenide (CIGS) and shapes them into cylinders that are placed on panels. The efficiency of Solyndra’s solar panels is between 12 an 14 percent — a number boosted by a special reflective coating on the roof below the panel.* 1366 Technologies is on a quest to make solar energy cheaper than coal. The company is associated with Emanuel Sachs, who is on leave from MIT right now. The company claims it cracked the $1 barrier using cadmium telluride for its thin-film cells. But further advances in chemistry and physics are needed to reach that sort of cost-efficiency using silicon.* Winsupply, a company that offers geothermal, wind and solar equipment, could use tax credits and other funding to make its products more widely available.* Universities might also receive some funding. MIT is one of the hottest places right now for developing technology that can boost energy efficiency. Additionally, projects like those at different universities to use LED lights as wi-fi access points could also bring energy use dollars to higher education institutions languishing due to the economic crisis. The biggest needs in green technology R&D involve using scientific breakthroughs to make renewable energy cost-efficient. Until science and technology can give us energy that costs less than fossil fuels, renewable/green energy will be limited. But this funding may put energy R&D on that track.© 2009 PhysOrg.com Explore further Solar energy development could get boost. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. U.S. announces solar energy initiative (PhysOrg.com) — One of the more interesting areas of technological development in the coming years is likely to be energy development — specifically green energy development. With new advances in physics allowing for such items as organic thin-film solar cells, it appears that energy technology could be one of the uses for cutting edge scientific advancements. U.S. President Barack Obama is hoping to spur further advancements in energy technology through increased funding for research and development. Citation: Barack Obama Announces Another $1.2 billion for Energy R&D (2009, March 24) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-03-barack-obama-billion-energy.htmllast_img read more

Lithiumion battery with new chemistry could power electric vehicles

first_img The researchers, Jusef Hassoun, Ki-Soo Lee, Yang-Kook Sun, and Bruno Scrosati, from the University of Rome Sapienza in Rome, Italy, and Hanyang University in Seoul, South Korea, have published their study on the advanced lithium-ion battery in a recent issue of the Journal of the American Chemical Society.Their study builds on the team’s previous research involving the development of novel, advanced lithium-ion battery chemistries. The key to the high performance lies in the battery’s electrode materials. Here, the scientists use a tin-carbon anode and a cathode made of lithium manganese oxide doped with nickel and cobalt. As far as the researchers know, a lithium-ion battery with this unique electrode combination has never been reported before.“The battery is based on a new combination between a high-voltage cathode and a nanostructured anode material,” Scrosati told PhysOrg.com. “The battery operates with a very stable capacity at high discharge rates with no significant capacity losses throughout the entire cycling test.”The new electrode materials provide certain advantages for the overall battery. As the researchers previously demonstrated, the tin-carbon anode has a high cycling life of several hundred cycles without a reduction in capacity, as well as discharge-charge efficiency approaching 100%. By applying a surface treatment to the anode, the researchers could further improve the capacity.As for the new manganese-based cathode materials, they are more abundant, less expensive, more environmentally friendly, and have a higher stability at low temperatures compared to the lithium cobalt oxide cathode used in conventional lithium-ion batteries. Also, in designing the new cathode, the researchers carefully optimized the composition, particle size, shape, morphology, and tap density.“The battery has: 1) a high volumetric and gravimetric energy density; 2) a high rate capability due to the nano-structured characteristics of the electrode materials; 3) an excellent cycle life; and 4) low cost, due to the use of electrode materials based on abundant elements,” Scrosati said.The cathode’s high voltage and high capacity provides the new battery with a higher energy density (170 Wh/kg at average discharge voltage of 4.2 volts) than conventional lithium-ion batteries.“The conventional lithium-ion batteries have an energy density of about 120-150 Wh/kg, depending on the used cathode material,” Scrosati said. “Generally, commercial lithium battery cells using layer structure cathode materials, for instance, NCA and NMC, deliver from 100 to 150 Wh/kg.”Altogether, the high energy density, stable cycle life, and high rate capacity suggest that the battery looks very promising for powering electric vehicles.“In summary, with respect to those using conventional lithium-ion batteries, electric vehicles using our battery may assure: 1) a longer driving range (210 km/charge vs. 150 km/charge due to the higher energy density; 2) a higher top speed; 3) a lower cost; and 4) better overall performance especially at low temperatures,” Scrosati said. Citation: Lithium-ion battery with new chemistry could power electric vehicles (2011, February 21) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-02-lithium-ion-battery-chemistry-power-electric.html Lithium-air batteries’ high energy density could extend range of electric vehicles More information: Jusef Hassoun, et al. “An Advanced Lithium Ion Battery Based on High Performance Electrode Materials.” Journal of the American Chemical Society. DOI:10.1021/ja110522x Explore further (PhysOrg.com) — While car companies race to develop electric and hybrid electric vehicles, one of the biggest challenges they face is finding a suitable energy storage system. Lithium-ion batteries, which currently power a variety of smaller consumer electronics devices, could ideally fill this role. But at the moment, they require further improvements in terms of energy density and power density in order to be used effectively in electric vehicles. Now in a new study, researchers have developed a novel type of lithium-ion battery with an anode and cathode that involve new, advanced battery chemistries, greatly improving the battery’s performance and likely making it suitable for electric vehicles. Copyright 2010 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Images of the cathode, which is made of lithium manganese oxide doped with nickel and cobalt, as seen under a field emission scanning electron microscope. Image credit: Jusef Hassoun, et al. ©2011 American Chemical Society. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Study shows powerful corporations really do control the worlds finances

first_imgNetwork topology with a zoom on some major transnational corporations in the financial sector. Image from arXiv:1107.5728v1 [q-fin.GN]. (PhysOrg.com) — For many years conventional wisdom has said that the whole world is controlled by the monied elite, or more recently by the huge multi-national corporations that seem to sometime control the very air we breathe. Now, new research by a team based in ETH-Zurich, Switzerland, has shown that what we’ve suspected all along, is apparently true. The team has uploaded their results onto the preprint server arXiv. Jill Brown on why corporations get branded as ‘evil’ Citation: Study shows powerful corporations really do control the world’s finances (2011, August 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-08-powerful-corporations-world.html Using data obtained (circa 2007) from the Orbis database (a global database containing financial information on public and private companies) the team, in what is being heralded as the first of its kind, analyzed data from over 43,000 corporations, looking at both upstream and downstream connections between them all and found that when graphed, the data represented a bowtie of sorts, with the knot, or core representing just 147 entities who control nearly 40 percent of all of monetary value of transnational corporations (TNCs).In this analysis the focus was on corporations that have ownership in their own assets as well as those of other institutions and who exert influence via ownership in second, third, fourth, etc. tier entities that hold influence over others in the web, as they call it; the interconnecting network of TNCs that together make up the whole of the largest corporations in the world. In analyzing the data they found, and then in building the network maps, the authors of the report sought to uncover the structure and control mechanisms that make up the murky world of corporate finance and ownership.To zero in on the significant controlling corporations, the team started with a list of 43,060 TNCs taken from a sample of 30 million economic “actors” in the Orbis database. They then applied a recursive algorithm designed to find and point out all of the ownership pathways between them all. The resulting TNC network produced a graph with 600,508 nodes and 1,006,987 ownership connections. The team then graphed the results in several different ways to show the different ways that corporate ownership is held; the main theme in each, showing that just a very few corporations through direct and indirect ownership (via stocks, bonds, etc.) exert tremendous influence over the actions of those corporations, which in turn exert a huge impact on the rest of us.The authors conclude their report by asking, perhaps rhetorically, what are the implications of having so few exert so much influence, and perhaps more importantly, in an economic sense, what the implications are of such a structure on market competitiveness. Explore further © 2011 PhysOrg.com More information: The network of global corporate control, Stefania Vitali, James B. Glattfelder, Stefano Battiston, arXiv:1107.5728v1 [q-fin.GN] arxiv.org/abs/1107.5728AbstractThe structure of the control network of transnational corporations affects global market competition and financial stability. So far, only small national samples were studied and there was no appropriate methodology to assess control globally. We present the first investigation of the architecture of the international ownership network, along with the computation of the control held by each global player. We find that transnational corporations form a giant bow-tie structure and that a large portion of control flows to a small tightly-knit core of financial institutions. This core can be seen as an economic “super-entity” that raises new important issues both for researchers and policy makers.Via Sciencenews.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Selfpropelled mindless tiny robots work together to move a corral

center_img PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Robots that can learn like humans © 2018 Tech Xplore Explore further Play In a mobile corral, the bots can collectively drive their enclosure forward and push it through a small hole. Credit: A. Deblais et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. (2018) More information: A. Deblais et al. Boundaries Control Collective Dynamics of Inertial Self-Propelled Robots, Physical Review Letters (2018). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.188002ABSTRACTSimple ingredients, such as well-defined interactions and couplings for the velocity and orientation of self-propelled objects, are sufficient to produce complex collective behavior in assemblies of such entities. Here, we use assemblies of rodlike robots made motile through self-vibration. When confined in circular arenas, dilute assemblies of these rods act as a gas. Increasing the surface fraction leads to a collective behavior near the boundaries: polar clusters emerge while, in the bulk, gaslike behavior is retained. The coexistence between a gas and surface clusters is a direct consequence of inertial effects as shown by our simulations. A theoretical model, based on surface mediated transport accounts for this coexistence and illustrates the exact role of the boundaries. Our study paves the way towards the control of collective behavior: By using deformable but free to move arenas, we demonstrate that the surface induced clusters can lead to directed motion, while the topology of the surface states can be controlled by biasing the motility of the particles.last_img read more

Study of diversity training suggests it doesnt lead to much change

first_img Citation: Study of diversity training suggests it doesn’t lead to much change (2019, April 2) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-04-diversity-doesnt.html © 2019 Science X Network Credit: CC0 Public Domain Explore further Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Survey shows more work needs to be done on diversity and inclusion in workplaceslast_img

Creating magic and miracle on stage

first_imgReminiscing the story of Indian theatre from 1850s to 1990s, theatre veterans and enthusiasts gathered for the launch of Amal Allana’s book, The Act of Becoming- a century of Indian Theatre, on Friday evening. The book encapsulates the theatrical journey through the eyes of twenty-two critically acclaimed actors, who have talked about their lives, aspirations, their in-depth training and lasting stage careers.Celebrating the role of actors, Govind Nihalani, the director of films like Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Hazaar Chaurasi ki Maa and Ardhsatya, took the audience down the memory lane and shared his insights on actors he has worked with.’I love my actors’, declared Nihalani, in the first few minutes of his speech. But why? He explains, ‘With a natural bias, being a director, I was intrigued to know why is Allan’s book only about actors.’ Debating it on his own, he came to a conclusion. Though a director and a playwright have a significant role in an act. It’s the actor whom we all see on the stage. ‘An actor is the one who creates meaning, magic and miracle on stage’. He hailed Allan’s book for giving the center stage to the actor. In his perspective, ‘It is a history and biography rolled into one, to get into the soul of an actor.’ Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixWith an anecdote from his second film Ardhsatya, he shared how the climax was decided by an unprepared dialogue between Smita Patil and Om Puri during one of the rehearsals. The gesture with which Smita takes up her hand but doesn’t touch Puri was a defining moment towards the end of the movie. Nihalani cherishes that rehearsal that played on the instincts of a well trained theatre actor Om Puri and the untrained yet supremely talented Smita Patil. ‘What I wanted was a gesture, but I didn’t know how to end the scene, Smita’s gesture did it for me,’ added Nihalani. In the words of his viewers and critics, Nihalani’s work went through a shift from art cinema to mainstream with films like Dev and Thakshak. The director says that it’s too simplistic an approach towards his work. He doesn’t demarcate it that way. Even his first film Aakrosh, back in 90s had a song in it. How can a song and dance sequence change the genre of filmmaking?On the sidelines, we asked Nihalani about his current projects. ‘Going by the nature of my work, I have always been impacted by the social environment around me. That forms the base of my current project too. For now, this is all I can say about it,’ commented Nihalani. Allana elaborated on her decade old research into Indian theatre and its background to put forth the evolution of modern Indian theatre, putting actors at the forefront. The stalwarts of Indian theatre who will make the readers walk through the corridors of history include Binodini Dasi, Bal Gandharva, Fida Husain, Zohra Segal, Utpal Dutt, Manohar Singh, Uttara Baokar, Naseerudin Shah, Heisnam Sabitri, and Maya Krishna Rao, among many others. Through a slideshow, she talked about the changing faces of Indian theatre along with excerpts from her book.last_img read more

Modis Rs 745 crore falls short of Kashmirs expectations

first_imgNaeem Akhtar, chief spokesman of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), told IANS here: ‘What Modi announced on Thursday (Thursday) is actually an interim relief of Rs.745 crore and not the package everybody here had in mind.’‘This is not a relief and rehabilitation package. The real relief and rehab package has to be much larger, which should be all-encompassing.’‘The Prime Minister has announced relief for damaged homes and hospitals, which in itself means the real thing should now follow,. he added’Devender Rana, a senior leader of the ruling National Conference, told IANS: ‘…the goodwill generated by Modi by coming here on Diwali can be translated into permanence by sanctioning the relief and rehabilitation package submitted by the state to the central government much before the onset of winter here.’ The Congress for understandable reasons said the visit was politically motivated with an eye to the forthcoming assembly elections. Ali Muhammad Bhat, a Congress leader, said: ‘The prime minister came for a photo ops session which went well so far as the intention of adding some seats to his party’s kitty is concerned.’‘There is nothing like a relief and rehabilitation package in Modi’s announcements as we had been given to understand by the media on the eve of this visit,’ said Bhat, a former legislator.Political parties apart, the common man here does not seem to be enthused by Modi’s announcement.‘Rs.745 crore is not what we expected. We thought the package would be much larger and would be aimed at rehabilitating the people and their livelihoods. That has not happened so far,’ said Ali Muhammad Dar, 54, a businessman here. Others say perhaps the state government and political parties have not been able to convince Modi that he needs to move beyond emotional integration with the people affected by the recent floods.Nisar Hussain, 63, said: ‘We had been told he would visit some flood-ravaged areas in the city. That would give him some idea about what has happened here.’‘Perhaps the state government and the mainstream politicians could not convince the Prime Minister to move out personally and see what is happening to the flood affected families,’ said Hussain, a retired engineer.Modi, however, made it clear that the relief announced by him is in addition to what would finally be announced for the relief and rehabilitation.last_img read more

I am excited to work with Tabu Manoj Bajpayee

first_imgActor Manoj Bajpayee says he is looking forward to working with Tabu in his upcoming film and calls her a ‘wonderful actress’. ‘I am excited to work with Tabu. she is a wonderful actress,’ the actor told IANS.‘I will start shooting with her in my next which will be co-produced by myself. I am thrilled about this project. I can’t reveal the plot of the film but it’s an out and out thriller film,’ he added.The yet-to-be titled film will be directed by debutant Mukul Abhyankar. The film will be co-produced by Neeraj Pandey. Meanwhile, Manoj is busy promoting his next film ‘Tevar’, produced by Boney Kapoor, and says he has lot of expectation from this film.‘I have a grey shade in Tevar and I have enjoyed the role. I have worked with Boney before in Bewafa which didn’t work well at the box office but I am expecting a lot from this film,’ he said.last_img read more