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Energy


Advances in energy are benefiting humanity today and tomorrow. Follow along as Singularity Hub discusses the future of energy and latest trends in this field.

Oslo Burns So Much Trash for Energy They’re Importing Rubbish

The US throws out 250 million tons of garbage a year. Roughly a third is recycled, and the rest is landfill. You might think that’s a problem, but one man’s trash is another’s treasure. Oslo, Norway burns rubbish to power and heat homes, and they’ve run out. The city imports trash from Sweden, Ireland, England—and they wouldn’t mind taking on a few tons from the US.

Our Singularity Future: Humanity’s Trash Piling Up In Great Lakes

Technology allows us to achieve great things – so many goods are made affordable, for example, by mass production. But when mass production is not responsibly planned out and regulated, trash starts piling up.

Report: Energy Remains As “Dirty” As Ever Despite Rise Of Renewable Energy

A new report from the International Energy Agency shows that, despite the rapid spread of renewable technologies, the energy produced today is just as “dirty” as it was 20 years ago.

CO2 Emissions in US Plunge to 1994 Levels As Natural Gas Booms

Proponents of natural gas, or methane in its purest form, say it is cleaner than coal and oil, lacks the PR problems and toxic waste byproducts of nuclear, and more efficiently produces electricity than sustainable sources. It is abundant and, in recent years, cheap. Is natural gas the future of energy production, a risky stop-gap measure to energy independence and cleaner energy, or simply overhyped?

America’s First Offshore Wind Farm Closer To Reality After Receiving $2 Billion From Japanese Bank

Offshore wind farms are finally arriving on US shores – and they’re doing it with foreign help. Plans to install Cape Wind, a 468 MW, 130 turbine wind farm in the waters off the...

World’s Largest Solar Power Plant Online In United Arab Emirates

And now, this country that has risen from poverty to become the world’s thirteenth richest after striking oil, is doing renewable energy in a characteristically big way. They’ve just completed the world’s largest solar power station.

Accelerating Technology Parallels Exponentially Rising Piles of Junk

In the midst of a move and digging through the clutter, I’ve excavated a number of ancient pieces of tech from bygone eras. There’s a 2004 Apple Powerbook that’s thicker than the econ textbook it’s sitting on, a cracked first generation iPhone, and an early “flatscreen” TV (that’s far from flat). What to do with this stuff? The faster we move from one generation of technology to the next, the faster the current iteration is destined for the trash heap. Does accelerating tech therefore doom us to flee an uninhabitable WALL-E world in the future? Maybe, but probably not.

‘Net-Zero’ Energy Store Being Built By Walgreens

Could a large American retail store produce as much energy as it consumes? Walgreens is going all 'green' to find out. The company recently announced a plan to erect a 'net-zero' energy store to replace an older one located in Evanston, Illinois. Through thoughtful and innovative design, the prototype store is specially designed to utilize various renewable energies technologies, such as wind, solar, and geothermal, in order to produce as much or potentially even more energy than it actually needs to operate.

Sea Installer – The Enormous Ocean Wind Turbine Installation Vessel

Technological progress advances our ability to build bigger and badder machines. A recent example is Sea Installer, part of the next generation of powerful wind turbine installation vessels that are capable of moving and installing...

GravityLight — Using Gravity To Bring Light To The Developing World

On the simplest level, GravityLight converts gravitational energy into light, just like its name promises. That's right, you lift a bag filled with 20 pounds of stuff (sand, earth, whatever) and attach it to a cord. As gravity pulls the bag down, an LED light is illuminated, working kind of like those hand-cranked flashlights. A braking mechanism causes the weight to drop slowly, producing about 30 minutes of light, and returning the bag to its original height "restarts" the light.

Stanford Group Successfully Fabricates ‘Peel and Stick’ Solar Cells

In a December paper published in Nature’s preliminary research online publication, Scientific Reports, Stanford researchers announced a fabrication process that makes thin-film solar cell (TFSC) stickers. The resulting TFSCs are thinner and lighter than today’s solar panels. And according to the researchers these “peel-and-stick” solar cells can be stuck just about anywhere—no surface is too curvy or uneven.

German Military Laser Destroys Targets Over 1Km Away

A German company has brought us one step closer to the kinds of shootouts only seen in Sci-Fi films. Düsseldorf-based Rheinmetall Defense recently tested a 50kW, high-energy laser at their proving ground facility in...

Norway Begins Four Year Test Of Thorium Nuclear Reactor

A Norwegian company is breaking with convention and switching to an alternative energy it hopes will be safer, cleaner and more efficient. But this isn't about ditching fossil fuels, but rather about making the...

European Union To Spend $900M Building Super Lasers More Powerful Than Any Yet Constructed

On the coattails of CERN's success with the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), Europeans and the world at large have another grand science project to be excited about: the Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI) project involving 40 research...

Towers Of Vegetables Go Up As Singapore Builds First Vertical Farm

Short on arable land? One solution would be to plant…up. Singapore, a small country that imports most of its food, has now begun selling vegetables from its first vertical farm. And even while they’re...

U.S. Army Embraces 3D Printers: “It’s Kind of a Magical Thing”

The following article was written by Singularity Hub Member David McNally from the U.S. Army's Research, Development and Engineering Command, and appeared on www.army.mil. ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (Oct. 3, 2012) -- When you walk...

Surging Solar in 2011 Proof of Ray Kurzweil’s Bold Prediction?

A recent report by British Petroleum (BP) found solar power generating capacity surged 73.3% last year. If you’re a dedicated fan of the singularity, statistics like that are reminiscent of Ray Kurzweil’s solar dictum—that solar...

ReadySet Solar Charger Successful In Africa Now Headed To US

Want renewable energy in a small, portable package? Then the ReadySet solar charger by Fenix International may be the closest thing to a perfect on-the-go kit for anyone excited about solar power. The charger was initially...
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Physicists At CERN Believe They Have Found Elusive Higgs Boson

The world of physics is electrified today with the news that a new particle has been detected that is consistent with the elusive Higgs boson, the long-sought after particle responsible for the forces in...
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Around the World Without a Drop Of Gasoline – Solar-Powered Catamaran Nears End Of More Than Two Years At Sea

Right now crossing the Gulf of Aden on its way to the Red Sea is a catamaran that is nearing the end of a journey that, when it’s completed, will have taken it around...

The Current State Of Wind Power — 2012 Should Be The Biggest Year Yet

When Barack Obama ran for President back in 2008, one of the 'changes' that he set forth was a New Energy Plan for America, which included a requirement that by 2012, 10% of US...
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Endless Windmills In the Ocean Powering Our Cities? It’s Not SciFi, It’s Here…At Least in the EU

From a distance they look like white toothpicks standing up out of the ocean. Up close they are towering engines of motion, whirring in the face of unforgiving gusts of wind. Offshore wind farms...

Solar Powered Bags Get You Ready To Go Back To School

Every time my mobile phone battery dies while I'm on the go, it takes a little part of me with it. Thankfully I can get that lost chunk of soul back with the power...

Solar Roadways: Crackpot Idea or Ingenious Concept?

Scott and Julie Brusaw have a way of solving the energy crisis, it just involves you driving on glass. The Brusaws are the founders of Solar Roadways, an Idaho based startup looking to reinvent...

UK Scientists Use Laser To Give False Memories to Flies

It's not enough that we swat flies or lure them to get stuck on glued paper, now we are also writing false memories into their brains. A team of neuroscientists at the University of...

Video of Airplane Laser Hitting Truck!

// http://digg.com/tools/diggthis.js For those of us living in fear of a deadly truck uprising, Maximum Overdrive must have scared someone, we can finally rest easy knowing that Boeing recently used a laser attached to...

The National Ignition Facility Aims to Create a Mini Star

World, meet the National Ignition Facility: a massive and incredible research device to study (and create) controlled nuclear fusion. Containing the world's largest and highest-energy laser, the facility hopes to create the first...

6 in 1 Solar Robot Kit: Standing on the Shoulders of Giant Memes

I don't usually do toy reviews, but the new 6 in 1 solar robot kit from Red5 is pretty cool. It's a transformer (note the lower case t), it's solar powered, and it's a...

Laser Surgery Probe Precise Enough to Target Individual Cancer Cells

The University of Texis at Austin reports that Professor Adela Ben-Yakar and colleagues have developed a femtosecond laser "microscalpel" that is so precise that it can destroy a single cell while leaving nearby cells...

Stimulating Nerves With Light Instead of Electricity Opens New Doors for Science

For decades now the standard approach to stimulating human nerve cells has been to use the method used by the human body itself - electrical current. Electrical stimulation of nerves is quite effective, but...

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