Liberating Devices From Their Power Cords

A new type of supercapacitor that can hold a charge when it takes a lickin' has been developed by engineers at Vanderbilt University. It is the first "multi-functional" energy storage device that can operate while subject to realistic static and dynamic loads - advancing the day when everything from cell phones to electric vehicles will no longer need separate batteries.

New Battery Test Center Adds Power to New York Innovation Economy

The drive to replace the gasoline economy with better batteries might be accelerated thanks to unique battery testing capabilities at Cornell, and a new testing and prototyping center that the university helped to establish.

Making Money From Lignin: Roadmap Shows How to Improve Lignocellulosic Biofuel Biorefining

A new review article in the journal Science points the way toward a future where lignin is transformed from a waste product into valuable materials such as low-cost carbon fiber for cars or bio-based plastics. Using lignin in this way would create new markets for the forest products industry and make ethanol-to-fuel conversion more cost-effective.

Control Methane Now, Greenhouse Gas Expert Warns

As the shale gas boom continues, the atmosphere receives more methane, adding to Earth's greenhouse gas problem. Robert Howarth, greenhouse gas expert and ecology and environmental biology professor, fears that we may not be many years away from an environmental tipping point - and disaster.

Story Tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, May 2014

1) Reducing soot. 2) Hydropower. 3) Understanding driver behavior. 4) A performance record in high-temperature superconducting wires.

'Double-Duty' Electrolyte Enables New Chemistry for Longer-Lived Batteries

Researchers have developed a new and unconventional battery chemistry aimed at producing batteries that last longer than previously thought possible.

Atomic Switcheroo Explains Origins of Thin-Film Solar Cell Mystery

Treating cadmium-telluride (CdTe) solar cell materials with cadmium-chloride improves their efficiency, but researchers have not fully understood why.

Halving Hydrogen

A fuel cell catalyst that converts hydrogen into electricity must tear open a hydrogen molecule. Now researchers have captured a view of such a catalyst holding onto the two halves of its hydrogen feast, provides insight into how to make the catalyst work better.

Researchers Achieve Higher Solar-Cell Efficiency With Zinc-Oxide Coating

Researchers at the University of Arkansas have achieved 14-percent efficiency in a 9-millimeter-square solar cell made of gallium arsenide. It is the highest efficiency rating for a solar cell that size and made with that material.

Making Dams Safer for Fish Around the World

The pressure changes that many fish experience when they travel through the turbulent waters near a dam can seriously injure or kill the fish. Scientists from around the world, including areas like Southeast Asia and Brazil where huge dams are planned or under construction, are working together to protect fish from the phenomenon, known as barotrauma.

Study Pegs Fuel Economy Costs of Common Practices

People who pack their cars and drive like Clark Griswold in National Lampoon's "Vacation" pay a steep penalty when it comes to fuel economy.

Organic Solar Cells More Efficient With Molecules Face-to-Face

New research from North Carolina State University and UNC-Chapel Hill reveals that energy is transferred more efficiently inside of complex, three-dimensional organic solar cells when the donor molecules align face-on, rather than edge-on, relative to the acceptor.

Engineered Bacteria Produce Biofuel Alternative for High-Energy Rocket Fuel

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology and the Joint BioEnergy Institute have engineered a bacterium to synthesize pinene, a hydrocarbon produced by trees that could potentially replace high-energy fuels, such as JP-10, in missiles and other aerospace applications.

Researcher: Study on Element Could Change Ballgame on Radioactive Waste

Groundbreaking work by a team of chemists on a fringe element of the periodic table could change how the world stores radioactive waste and recycles fuel.

A Battery That 'Breathes' Could Power Next-Gen Electric Vehicles

Sales of electric vehicles (EVs) nearly doubled in 2013, but most won't take you farther than 100 miles on one charge. To boost their range toward a tantalizing 300 miles or more, researchers are reporting progress on a "breathing" battery that has the potential to one day replace the lithium-ion technology of today's EVs. They presented their work at the 247th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society.

Harnessing Everyday Motion to Power Mobile Devices (Video)

Imagine powering your cell phone by simply walking around your office or rubbing it with the palm of your hand. Rather than plugging it into the wall, you become the power source. Researchers at the 247th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society, presented these commercial possibilities and a unique vision for green energy. To see a video of the team's work, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVhJ4G-7na4.

Scripps Florida Scientists Devise New, Lower Cost Method to Create More Usable Fuels

Scientists from The Scripps Research Institute have devised a new, more efficient method with the potential to convert the major components found in natural gas into useable fuels and chemicals--opening the door to cheaper, more abundant energy and materials with much lower emissions.

Shale Could Be Long-Term Home for Problematic Nuclear Waste

Shale, the source of the United States' current natural gas boom, could help solve another energy problem: what to do with radioactive waste from nuclear power plants. The unique properties of the sedimentary rock and related clay-rich rocks make it ideal for storing the potentially dangerous spent fuel for millennia, according to a geologist studying possible storage sites. He presented his research today at the 247th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society.

Toward 'Vanishing' Electronics and Unlocking Nanomaterials' Power Potential

Brain sensors and electronic tags that dissolve. Boosting the potential of renewable energy sources. These are examples of the latest research from two pioneering scientists selected as this year's Kavli lecturers at the 247th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society.

New Way to Make Biodiesel Creates Less Waste From Alligator, and Likely Other Animal Fats

Animal fat from chicken, pork, beef and even alligators could give an economical, ecofriendly boost to the biofuel industry, according to researchers who reported a new method for biofuel production here today. The report, following up on their earlier study on the potential use of gator fat as a source of biodiesel fuel, was part of the 247th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society.

New, Inexpensive Production Materials Boost Promise of Hydrogen Fuel

In a study published last week in the journal Science, Choi and postdoctoral researcher Tae Woo Kim combined cheap, oxide-based materials to split water into hydrogen and oxygen gases using solar energy with a solar-to-hydrogen conversion efficiency of 1.7 percent, the highest reported for any oxide-based photoelectrode system.

ORNL Microscopy System Delivers Real-Time View of Battery Electrochemistry

Using a new microscopy method, researchers can image and measure electrochemical processes in batteries in real time and at nanoscale resolution.

Artificial Leaf Jumps Developmental Hurdle

‚ÄčIn a recent early online edition of Nature Chemistry, ASU scientists, along with colleagues at Argonne National Laboratory, report advances toward perfecting a functional artificial leaf.

Solar-Induced Hybrid Fuel Cell Produces Electricity Directly from Biomass

Researchers have developed a new type of low-temperature fuel cell that directly converts biomass to electricity with assistance from a catalyst activated by solar or thermal energy.

Research Leads to 20 Percent Cuts in Energy Consumption in Buildings

OU researcher creates virtual sensors to detect unreliable heating, vent and air conditioning systems in buildings. The method is a low cost, reliable process to reduce a company's utilities bills and carbon footprint.