Researchers at ETH Zurich and Empa have chemically modified wood and made it more compressible, turning it into a mini-generator. When compressed, it generates an electrical voltage. Such wood could serve as a biosensor or as a building material that harvests energy.
Electricity generation Stories March 15
Electricity generation Stories December 21, 2016
Electrek morning green energy brief: America believes in cleaning up after itself, 2017 solar installs projections, and more
[Editor’s note: We’re trying a new morning green energy briefing which should deliver every day at 9am ET. Please comment below] Americans strongly believe in their responsibilities toward climate change and pollution – Two-thirds of registered voters (66%) say the U.S. should reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, regardless of what other countries do. Nearly eight out […]
Electricity generation Stories December 20, 2016
Solar power took the lead in new capacity additions for 2016 expected to be greater than 9.5GW of utility scale plus 4.5GW of distributed installations. The numbers could possibly be even higher with 2016 utility scale solar being so aggressive and 4th quarters being mecurial. When accounting for capacity factor (amount of time the hardware is actually pushing electrons onto the grid), solar power is 31% of new electricity, natural gas 41% and wind 20%. Solar almost doubled from 7.3GW in 2015, finishing third for overall US utility capacity additions. expand full story
Electricity generation Stories October 30, 2016
US electrical utilities are feeling pressure from distributed solar power and are proving that they will go to all ends to protect their monopoly positions. In Florida, the utilities are spending tens of millions of dollars to manipulate the electorate into voting for an amendment that limits solar power’s growth. In the last five years alone, the largest 25 utilities have spent more than $400 million on lobbying federal and state elections. This effort to control the political machine is worth trillions annually.
And now that we know 92% of people breathe unsafe air and more than 6 million a year die of it – that these utilities are slowing the transition to cleaner forms of energy means they are knowingly killing people.
Electricity generation Stories September 26, 2016
On Aug. 11 a bid of US$0.46/W was put forward to build 500MW of solar power in China (a roughly calculated levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) at $0.019/kWh). In the past week we saw a bid of $0.023/kWh to build 1.2GW of solar power in Abu Dhabi. This price of $0.023/kWh is nearly 25% lower than the $0.0299/kWh bid for a series of Abu Dhabi projects in late April. These extremely aggressive price falls are partially driven by unique situations – a Chinese solar panel production glut and historically low costs of money. But as Frank Wouters, the former director of Masdar Clean Energy puts it, “We’re still learning how to further reduce the cost of solar cells and other components, as well as operation and maintenance costs. There’s no reason why the cost of solar will ever increase again.”
Electricity generation Stories November 16, 2015
The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) updated its study on the average greenhouse gas emissions of electric vehicles versus gasoline-powered vehicles based on electricity sources and reiterated that on average, EVs indeed create less emissions than gasoline-powered cars. expand full story
Electricity generation Stories May 23, 2015
There has been a lot of uninformed banker-speak in the media about Tesla’s battery including by Bloomberg here. The problem is these folks don’t understand the new market that Tesla is opening up.
The complaints have been that the battery wall doesn’t make economic sense – that for the average household to go off the grid with these combined with solar (or wind), it would be incredibly expensive.
That’s correct… expand full story
Electricity generation Stories May 1, 2015
Following Tesla’s introduction of a new selection of battery packs for residential, commercial and industrial use, SolarCity announced the integration of these batteries to their solar system offering. This new offering will include the option to go completely off-grid for select customers starting by home owners in Hawaii.
Combining photovoltaic panels with Tesla’s battery packs will allow home owners to power their house on sunlight day and night.