Archive for the ‘sustainability’ category: Page 2

Jan 3, 2020

Switching tracks: Reversing electrons’ course through nature’s solar cells

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

Might interest some.

Think of a train coming down the tracks to a switch point where it could go either to the right or the left—and it always goes to the right.

Photosynthetic organisms have a similar switch point. After sunlight is absorbed, energy transfers rapidly to a protein called the reaction center. From this point, the electrons could move either to an A-branch (or “right-track”) set of molecules, or to a B-branch (“left-track”) set of identical molecules.

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Jan 3, 2020

Sustainable supply of minerals and metals key to a low-carbon energy future

Posted by in categories: governance, nuclear energy, sustainability, transportation

The global low-carbon revolution could be at risk unless new international agreements and governance mechanisms are put in place to ensure a sustainable supply of rare minerals and metals, a new academic study has warned.

The amount of cobalt, copper, lithium, cadmium, and rare earth elements needed for solar photovoltaics, batteries, electric vehicle (EV) motors, wind turbines, fuel cells, and nuclear reactors will likely grow at a rapid pace in the upcoming years. Even if alternatives are found for one metal, there will be reliance on another as the scope of possibilities is inherently limited by physical and chemical properties of elements.

However, with global supplies often heavily monopolized by a single country, confronted by social and environmental conflict, or concentrated in poorly functioning markets, there is a real possibility that a shortage of minerals could hold back the urgent need for a rapid upscaling of low-carbon technologies. In some cases, markets are providing misleading signals to investors that can lead to poor decisions. In other cases, the countries or regions supplying minerals are politically unstable.

Jan 2, 2020

SpaceX’s Upcoming Crewed NASA Mission Will Feature a Tesla Car: Video

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, space travel, sustainability

Elon Musk’s rocket company SpaceX is kicking off the new year with an ultra busy month of tests and missions, including a major test for the company’s first crewed mission to fly NASA astronauts to and back from the International Space Station (ISS).

To drum up hype ahead of the big day, Musk posted a simulated video on Monday showing how the eventual manned launch will look.

SEE ALSO: Why Nobel Prize-Winning Scientists Universally Oppose Moving to Mars.

Jan 2, 2020

New Way to Make Hydrogen Energy Out of Water Much More Cheaply

Posted by in categories: energy, sustainability, transportation

Australian Research opens up new possibilities for hydrogen fuelled future.

Scientists show how using only water, iron, nickel and electricity can create hydrogen energy much more cheaply than before.

Hydrogen-powered cars may soon become more than just a novelty after a UNSW-led team of scientists demonstrated a much cheaper and sustainable way to create the hydrogen required to power them.

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Dec 31, 2019

The War on Sensemaking, Daniel Schmachtenberger

Posted by in categories: evolution, sustainability

Let’s be clear.

What can we trust? Why is the ‘information ecology’ so damaged, and what would it take to make it healthy?

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Dec 31, 2019

AI enables design of spray-on coating that can generate solar energy

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, solar power, sustainability

A new system enables optimization of perovskite materials for the production of technology that could make solar energy ubiquitous.

Dec 31, 2019

Tesla batteries help power new solar water desalination plant in Africa

Posted by in category: sustainability

GivePower has deployed a new water desalination plant in Africa using Tesla batteries and solar power that is now providing clean water to thousands of people.

The system has been deployed in Kiunga, a rural village in Kenya where the lack of clean water had people sometimes rely on saltwater wells or even contaminated water.

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Dec 30, 2019

Secretary-General Says United Nations Must Embrace Blockchain

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, sustainability

In September 2018, United Nations secretary-general António Guterres gave a speech on the global lack of trust, or what he called a “trust deficit disorder.” He just gave a similar speech, this time discussing blockchain specifically. The organization isn’t just motivated to build a more sustainable world or reducing waste from their supply chain, but as American support has waned, donors are demanding assurance their donations are being spent for the purpose they were intended.

United Nations secretary-general António Guterres says the intergovernmental giant needs to embrace blockchain. In a statement provided to Forbes by the secretary-general’s office, Guterres touted the technology first made popular by bitcoin as a crucial component of the organization that generate’s $50 billion in revenue annually.

Coming at a time when the president of China has touted blockchain as a national priority, and the $6 billion United Nations Children’s Fund has started accepting bitcoin and ethereum donations for some of its projects, the statement from Guterres shows that cryptocurrency and the underlying blockchain technology is being seriously explored at the highest levels of the largest organizations in the world.

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Dec 29, 2019

How Ford Makes Car Parts From Used McDonald’s Coffee Beans

Posted by in categories: food, sustainability

Would be cool to see Tesla use more recycled components.

McDonald’s used to send 62 million pounds of coffee chaff to landfills. But the company partnered with Ford Motor Company with hopes to eliminate their waste to landfills. The research team at Ford has already been using agave, wheat, and even denim byproducts to make car parts. They discovered that chaff can be used as well. Here’s an inside look of the process.

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Dec 26, 2019

Russia to track EARTH-THREATENING asteroids from robot-inhabited nuclear-powered polar Moon base

Posted by in categories: government, nuclear energy, robotics/AI, solar power, space, sustainability

Moon’s southern pole will be a good spot for an observatory that together with space-based telescopes help find dangerous asteroids. Russia plans to build one as part of an ambitious lunar base project.

Conquering the moon is on the Russian space agency’s to-do list for the not-so-distant future. Roscosmos is currently working on a comprehensive plan that the Russian government wants to see before allocating any money for it. Part of a permanent Russian base envisioned on the Moon will be given to an observatory that will serve as part of a “global system for tracking asteroid and comet threats,” a senior Roscosmos official said in a recent interview.

“The location selected for the base is southern pole of the moon. It has favorable relief and conditions: enough light for solar panels, constantly shadowed craters with ice reserves for fuel and raw material,” Aleksandr Bloshenko explained.

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