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Posts Tagged ‘Solar’

Solar Impulse Announces Flight Across America For 2013

December 15th, 2012 12:02 admin View Comments

Transportation

cylonlover writes “Flush with success from their 6,000-km (3,728-mile) Europe-to-Africa round-trip flight earlier this year, the duo behind the Solar Impulse solar-powered aircraft are now planning on flying it across America next spring. It will mark the first time that a solar-powered plane has traversed the country. Solar Impulse partners Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg made the official announcement this Tuesday, although the logistics of the flight have yet to be finalized. They have stated that the trip will be broken into 20-hour legs, starting at San Francisco and proceeding to New York City. As with their previous multi-leg flights, the two pilots will take turns flying the aircraft.” You can read about it straight from the doers, too.

Source: Solar Impulse Announces Flight Across America For 2013

Towards a 50% Efficient Solar Cell

September 14th, 2012 09:10 admin View Comments

Power

necro81 writes IEEE Spectrum magazine has a feature article describing DARPA-funded work towards developing a solar cell that’s 50% efficient, for a finished module that’s 40% efficient — suitable for charging a soldier’s gadgets in the field. Conventional silicon and thin-film PV tech can hit cell efficiencies of upwards of 20%, with finished modules hovering in the teens. Triple-junction cells can top 40%, but are expensive to produce and not practical in most applications. Current work by the Very High Efficiency Solar Cell program uses optics (dichroic films) to concentrate incoming sunlight by 20-200x, and split it into constituent spectra, which fall on many small solar cells of different chemistries, each tuned to maximize the conversion of different wavelengths.”

Source: Towards a 50% Efficient Solar Cell

Aphids May Harvest Solar Energy Like Plants

August 20th, 2012 08:13 admin View Comments

Aphids May Harvest Solar Energy Like Plants

August 20th, 2012 08:13 admin View Comments

Solar Impulse Completes First Intercontinental Solar Flight

June 6th, 2012 06:16 admin View Comments

Transportation

An anonymous reader writes “Slashdotters may remember the Solar Impulse — the world’s first 100% solar-powered airplane — from last year when it made its public debut. Today the airplane made news again as it successfully completed the world’s first solar-powered intercontinental flight — a pivotal step that paves the way for the plane’s first trip around the world in 2014.”

Source: Solar Impulse Completes First Intercontinental Solar Flight

What People in 1859 Thought of the Great Solar Storm (Hint: They Were Very Confused)

May 9th, 2012 05:41 admin View Comments
Categories: 80beats Tags: , , , , ,

What People in 1859 Thought of the Great Solar Storm (Hint: They Were Very Confused)

May 9th, 2012 05:41 admin View Comments
Categories: 80beats Tags: , , , , ,

Monster Solar Tornadoes Discovered

March 29th, 2012 03:38 admin View Comments

Space

astroengine writes “For the first time, huge solar tornadoes have been filmed by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) swirling deep inside the solar corona — the sun’s superheated atmosphere. But if you’re imagining the pedestrian tornadoes that we experience on Earth, think again. These solar monsters, measuring the width of several Earths and swirling at speeds of up to 300,000 kilometers (190,000 miles) per hour, aren’t only fascinating structures; they may also trigger violent magnetic eruptions that can have drastic effects on our planet. ‘These tornadoes may help to produce favorable conditions for CMEs to occur,’ said Xing Li, solar physicist at Aberystwyth University and co-discoverer of the phenomenon.”

Source: Monster Solar Tornadoes Discovered

Solar Power Is Booming — Why Do We Want To Kill It?

March 28th, 2012 03:35 admin View Comments

Power

TaeKwonDood writes with a followup to the news we discussed over the weekend about tariffs being places on Chinese solar panels. He writes, “According to Forbes, ‘Solar power is booming. Imports from China were a tepid $21 million in 2005, but in 2011 installations totaled nearly $2.7 billion. That’s a huge win. And just as advocates for solar power had hoped, a larger market drove down prices. Solar energy cost has declined by two-thirds in the last four years, meaning it will soon start to close in on fossil fuels.’ There’s just one problem: now the government wants to kill it. The article continues, ‘As the market was flooded by both silicon (from silicon producers) and thin-film panels (by Chinese manufacturers), the price for thin-film panels came crashing down – along with Solyndra’s business model. … Yet that isn’t the only instance of mismanagement. The whole clean energy program remains flawed, even at the consumer level. The people who are the most likely to be impacted by high energy prices, the poor, are the least likely to benefit from the solar rebate scheme because they lack the capital to pay for the installation.’”

Source: Solar Power Is Booming — Why Do We Want To Kill It?

MIT Solar Towers Beat Solar Panels By Up To 20x

March 27th, 2012 03:27 admin View Comments

Technology

An anonymous reader writes “A team of MIT researchers has come up with a very different approach to solar collectors: building cubes and towers that extend solar cells upward in three-dimensional configurations. The results from the structures they’ve tested show power output ranging from double to more than 20 times that of fixed flat panels with the same base area. The biggest boosts in power were seen in the situations where improvements are most needed: in locations far from the equator, in winter months and on cloudier days.”

Source: MIT Solar Towers Beat Solar Panels By Up To 20x

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