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Energy Efficiency

Designed by big data and made with synthetic chemistry, this thin film and others like it could help reduce pollution and remove greenhouse gases from the air. Courtesy: Columbia University
AI and Machine Learning May 21, 2020

Big Data, machine learning used to design gas separation membranes

Researchers have developed a method that combines Big Data and machine learning to selectively design gas-filtering polymer membranes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve the next generation of batteries.

By Holly Evarts
Courtesy: Ajayan Research Group/Rice University
Electrical Systems May 16, 2020

2D oxide flakes pick up electrical properties

Rice University lab detects piezoelectric effects in nanosheets due to defects, which could improve energy harvesting applications.

By Mike Williams
Courtesy: EPRI
Power Quality May 6, 2020

Power conditioning needs to match the power quality environment

Voltage sags depend on the facility. An uninterruptible power supply (UPS) might be needed, but for large-scale issues, a UPS might not be the best option. See five UPS alternatives.

By Mark Stephens and Alden Wright
Reaction pathways for oxidative dehydrogenation of ethane facilitated by the molten carbonate shell modified perovskite redox catalyst. Courtesy: North Carolina State University
Energy Efficiency April 28, 2020

Ethylene catalyst for manufacturing, shale gas developed

North Carolina State University researchers engineered a catalyst that can more efficiently convert ethane into ethylene, which is used in a variety of manufacturing processes including plastics and shale gas.

By Matt Shipman
Rice University theorists have calculated flexoelectric effects in double-walled carbon nanotubes. The electrical potential (P) of atoms on either side of a graphene sheet (top) are identical, but not when the sheet is curved into a nanotube. Double-walled nanotubes (bottom) show unique effects as band gaps in inner and outer tubes are staggered. Courtesy: Yakobson Research Group/Rice University
Energy, Power March 31, 2020

Double-walled nanotubes have electro-optical advantages

Rice University calculations show double-walled nanotubes could be highly useful for solar panels and other nanoelectronics applications such as photovoltaics.

By Mike Williams
Courtesy: EPRI
Power Quality March 26, 2020

Understanding power quality, improving manufacturing system reliability

Voltage sags and interruptions can have a detrimental effect on manufacturing processes. Understanding how and why they happen is crucial.

By Mark Stephens and Alden Wright
Courtesy: Dishita Turakhia and Junyi Zhu, MIT
System Integration March 6, 2020

Breadboards integrated onto physical products

MIT researchers have invented a way to integrate “breadboards” — flat platforms used for electronics prototyping to quickly test circuit functions and user interactions with products such as smart devices and flexible electronics.

By Rob Matheson
Courtesy: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Energy, Power March 4, 2020

Material’s insulating properties can be tuned at will

MIT researchers have designed an electrical heat valve, which can vary the thermal conductivity on demand, and could help create controllable insulation and harvest the energy of waste heat.

By David L. Chandler
RPI researchers have created a battery that uses potassium rather than lithium, which is cheaper and more abundant and more energy-efficient and could change how batteries are made. Courtesy: Chris Vavra, CFE Media and Technology
Energy, Power March 3, 2020

Metal battery using Potassium could be alternative to Lithium-ion

Researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have created a metal battery that relies on potassium instead of Lithium-ion, which could create more energy efficient batteries for consumers.

By Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)
MD Series High Density Networked Power Metering System with BACnet or Modbus Protocols from Siemens Smart Infrastructure is optimized for use in equipment rooms, multi-family housing, data centers and other high metering load measurement areas. It won a 2020 Engineers’ Choice Award in the Power – Energy, Power Protection category. Courtesy: Siemens
Energy Management February 13, 2020

Three energy meter selection tips

Energy saving designs: Consider how long energy data collection is needed, how many phases and accuracy, and how the data should be collected.

By Drew Knobloch