Harvesting Electricity: Triboelectric Generators Capture Wasted Power

submitted by: nsf

With one stomp of his foot, Zhong Lin Wang illuminates a thousand LED bulbs--with no batteries or power cord. A professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Wang is using what’s technically known as the triboelectric effect to create surprising amounts of electric power by rubbing or touching two different materials together.

Source: Georgia Institute of Technology

Renewable Energy Development: A Good Political and Economic Agenda

submitted by: UP Los Baños

Documentation of the special seminar on Renewable Energy Development: A Good Political and Economic Agenda by Dr. Liborio S. Cabanilla, Former Dean, College of Economics and Management, University of the Philippines Los Baños on June 27, 2013.

Approaches to Evaluating and Improving Lithium-Ion Battery Safety

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
As lithium-ion battery technologies mature, the size and energy of these systems continues to increase for emerging applications in transportation, grid storage, military use and aerospace. In fact, broadening the application space for lithium-ion batteries from the consumer electronics industries to these emerging markets increases their size from 1-50 Wh batteries for smart phones and laptops to >50 kWh for electric vehicles (EVs) and MWh scale for utility storage systems. As these...

Making Most of the Absorbed Photon: New Insights into Carrier Multiplication in Semiconductor Nanostructures

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Carrier multiplication (CM) or multiexciton generation (MEG) is a process whereby absorption of a single photon produces multiple electron-hole pairs (excitons). CM could benefit a number of solar-energy conversion technologies, most notably photocatalysis and photovoltaics. This presentation overviews recent progress in understanding of the CM process in semiconductor nanocrystals, motivated by an outstanding challenge in this field - the lack of capability to quickly discern between...

New Perspectives of Energy Storage Materials

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Summary: Energy storage in the electrochemical form is attractive because of its high efficiency and fast response time. New and improved materials for energy storage are urgently required to make more efficient use of our finite supply of fossil fuels, and to enable the effective use of renewable energy sources. In this seminar, I will discuss a few new perspectives for energy storage materials including new Li intercalation compounds, new Na intercalation compounds and new...

Directed Assembly of Anisotropic Particles - Fundamentals and Energy-related Applications

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Summary: Spherical colloids with isotropic properties have been used as building blocks to assemble a variety of 2D and 3D structures in past, such as FCC, HCP, and BCT crystals. Anisotropic particles are, however, more faithful mimics of molecules and atoms because of the anisotropic interactions. Current synthetic methods are versatile and accurate enough to create and tune the anisotropic properties in geometry, chemical composition, surface functionality, and physical properties. In the...

Control of Power Inverters in Renewable Energy and Smart Grid Integration

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Summary: Renewable energy sources have been regarded as the most promising means to solve the energy and environmental issues we face nowadays. How to integrate renewable energy into smart grids presents many challenging problems in control and power electronics. A well-integrated smart grid provides the backbone for the high-level functions of smart grids, such as wide-area control, communication, information, marketing and security. In this talk, an overview of the enabling technologies...

Rotational Kinetic Energy as Power System Service: Assessing The Role of Wind Farms

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Summary: The electric power system is currently composed of generators with large spinning masses whose speeds are tightly coupled together. These masses offer a store of rotational kinetic energy that naturally gives inertia to the average speed of the system. This inertia offers a first line of defense that is tapped during sudden power imbalances. Installing a large fleet of wind farms will result in hours of the year when many traditional generators are turned off. The result may be a...

Investigating Structure Variation of Electrode Materials for Lithium Ion Batteries

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Summary: Improving energy density, power density, cycle life and safety and decreasing cost of current Li-ion batteries are highly desirable for the applications of advanced portable electronic devices, electrical tools, electrical vehicles, storage batteries for renewable energy, and stationary batteries for smart grids. Understanding lithium storage mechanism and structure-property relationship across length scales are essential for rational design of new materials. Here we report our...

Control of Wind Turbines: Accomplishments and Continuing Challenges

submitted by: RASEIBoulder
Wind energy is recognized worldwide as cost-effective and environmentally friendly and is among the world's fastest-growing sources of electrical energy. Despite the amazing growth in global wind power installations in recent years, science and engineering challenges still exist. Megawatt wind turbines are large, flexible structures that operate in uncertain, time-varying wind and weather conditions and lend themselves nicely to advanced control solutions. Advanced controllers can help...