Nanowire Solar Cells Surprise and Excite

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Long-time friend of the blog, and occasional corrector of the editor’s attempts at incorporating French into the proceedings, Colin Rush sent this link to a story about photonics in the Christian Science Monitor. “Wires 1/10,000th the diameter of a human hair can absorb more of the sun’s power than previously thought possible, a new study in Nature Photonics suggests,” writes David Unger, an energy correspondent for the Monitor. Unger’s lead paragraphs pushed your editor to look up several related terms and look further into the researchers’ own writing.  “Although still years away from production, nanowire solar cells could push the conversion efficiency of the sun’s energy past the so-called Shockley-Queisser limit, which for decades has served as a fixed ceiling in solar energy research. …

Replacing Gasoline with Aluminum?

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 2 Comments

Several researchers in commercial, government, and academic realms are studying the possibility of using aluminum as an energy source for vehicles and even grid power. In the commercial realm, Alchemy Research in Israel makes the following rather startling claims.  “Alydro is a new technology developed by Alchemy Research for producing clean energy from a reaction of aluminum and water at elevated temperatures. “Alydro generates energy in the form of hydrogen and heat. The only by-product is fully recyclable aluminum oxide. “Alydro is competitive with gasoline on energy density and affordability. It is superior to gasoline on sustainability, environmental characteristics and safety.” Alchemy Research claims that aluminum has 2.5 times the energy density of gasoline, about 84 mega Joules per liter or 23.3 …