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Solar

Solar thermal and photovoltaic solar energy


More Efficient, Self-cleaning Solar Cells

Written by , on March 17, 2014

Researchers from Changchun University of Science and Technology, Xi’an Technological University and Cardiff University have found that a patterned layer on top of the active part of a solar panel can avoid the energy losses due to reflection from the surface. They have devised an approach to the lithographic process used to “print” microelectronic circuits […]  Read more »

Solar Power at Night?

Written by , on March 11, 2014

Physicists at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, led by Federico Capasso, a world-renowned expert in semiconductor physics, photonics and solid-state electronics, have proposed a device that would harvest energy from Earth's infrared emissions into outer space. The device would consist of a "hot" plate at the temperature of the Earth and air, […]  Read more »

Drones to Collect Solar and Wind Energy

Written by , on February 12, 2014

New Wave Energy, an English company, has plans to build a high altitude aerial power plant, consisting of networks of unmanned drones that can harvest solar and wind energy and transmit it wirelessly to receiving stations on the ground. As sunlight radiates down to the Earth's surface some of its energy is absorbed into the […]  Read more »

Using Steam Engine Technology for Power Storage

Written by , on November 30, 2013

A group of Australian engineers has formed a company, Terrajule, to develop a novel energy storage solution. The Terrajoule system combines concentrated solar thermal energy, steam engines and an integrated storage system using an insulated pressure vessel. The concentrated solar thermal energy is used to produce steam. Since it is impractical to store steam for […]  Read more »

Falling Particle Solar Thermal Power

Written by , on September 17, 2013

Engineers at Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico, and partner institutions, are using a falling particle receiver to more efficiently convert the sun's energy to electricity in large-scale, concentrating solar power plants. The falling particle receiver developed at Sandia drops sand-like ceramic particles through a beam of concentrated sunlight and captures and stores the heated […]  Read more »

Solar – a $77 billion Industry

Written by , on August 21, 2013

Bollomberg has created this short video of facts about the state of the solar industry. It emphasises how global solar energy capacity has soared in the past 5 years yet Earth's most abundant energy source still provides only a fraction of our total energy.  Read more »

Community Renewables Boom in the U.K.

Written by , on July 24, 2013

A series of government incentives is producing a boom in community renewable energy projects in the U.K. The BBC has reported that there are already more than 2,000 community energy projects across the U.K. According to Andy Deacon of the UK's Energy Saving Trust, "We are already seeing these sorts of schemes popping up on […]  Read more »

Peru Using Solar to Give Electricity to the Poor

Written by , on July 23, 2013

Peru has begun a new program that will use solar panels to provide electricity to more than two million of its poorest citizens. Only two-thirds of the country's population of more than 24 million currently has access to electricity. Energy and Mining Minister, Jorge Merino, says that the program will allow 95% of Peru to […]  Read more »

Hybrid Solar-Wind Turbine

Written by , on July 12, 2013

SME McCamley Middle East Ltd, togeher with engineers at the University of Bath, have developed a new hybrid technology that integrates wind and solar power generation – the wind turbine blades are encased in an outer frame, which is topped with solar cells. The turbines are designed to be mounted on buildings and in built-up […]  Read more »

Solar Cells That Also Store Energy

Written by , on June 19, 2013

Researchers at the University of Wisconsin in Madison has demonstrated the viability of a design for solar panels that can simultaneously generate electricity from sunlight and store the energy captured. As well as generating electricity in the usual way, the panels would also store electrons on zinc oxide nanowires coated with polyvinylidene fluoride polymer. The […]  Read more »