Thin-Film Solar Cells That Are Easy To Manufacture Hit 15.4% Efficiency

An easy-to-manufacture, thin-film solar cell with a higher than 15% conversion efficiency was recently created by researchers at the University of Oxford through the use of a newly emerging type of semiconductor referred to as “perovskites.” The new devices are simple enough that they could be mass produced rather easily, by utilizing processes such as vapour-deposition — potentially greatly cutting down on costs, according to the researchers. The “perovskite” semiconductors — organometal trihalide perovskite semiconductors, which have the formula (CH3NH3)PbX3,…

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Cleaning Water With Music CDs

Researchers in Taiwan have come up with an interesting way to make use of the incredible quantities of compact discs which are thrown away every year — use them to break down sewage and clean wastewater. The research team behind the new idea will be presenting their wastewater treatment device (which utilizes CDs) at the Optical Society’s (OSA) Annual Meeting, Frontiers in Optics 2013, October 6-10 in Orlando, Florida. “Optical disks are cheap, readily available, and very commonly used,” states…

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Strategies for Doing Business in Rural India

India’s fast-paced growth has been a topic of much debate and discussion in the last few years. As a result of booming sectors such as IT, there is a growing sense that the country is emerging as a global leader. As a result, at times India is being touted as the mecca of ‘Jugaad’ innovations – a term used to describe the process of finding innovative solutions to problems with limited resources. However, as only 12% of India’s population lives…

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Aptera Motors Closes its Doors Due to Poor Electric Car Market?

When Aptera Motors started developing their four door sedan in 2010, they had big goals. Their car would have been similar in size to the Honda Accord, but since it was made with such lightweight materials, it would weigh 1000 pounds less. It would have cost less than $30,000 which is cheaper than the electric cars currently on the market. And it would have made 190 miles to the gallon – the Nissan Leaf, by comparison, gets 99 miles to the gallon. All of that sounds fantastic to me – but Aptera Motors will be closing before they can complete the vehicle. Why?

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Government and Financial Services Lag in Sustainability Engagement, Small Businesses Shine: Brighter Planet Survey

Shareholder pressure and greater demands for corporate accountability are the fastest growing catalysts for greener workplaces, according to a new survey released today by Brighter Planet, a provider of carbon and energy calculations. Demands for corporate and social accountability are at an all-time high. Many organizations are floundering in their efforts to promote sustainability. Financial services, government and wholesale sectors are the laggards in sustainability engagement, while environmental, energy, utility, and non-profit organizations get the highest ratings for program effectiveness. Smaller organizations tend to outperform larger ones.

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Martifer Solar Aligns Profitability and Innovation with Clean Energy Solutions

Martifer Solar is an innovative company that specializes in offering all types of photovoltaic solutions adapted to the client’s individual needs.

“In simpler terms: we transform solar radiation into electricity, and deliver an end-product to our client with all guarantees.”

Martifer Solar is an international solar solutions provider that began operations in the United States in 2008. The integral undertaking of these projects involves the engineering service, the production of modules and solar trackers, the complete installation, maintenance and a financial analysis if needed.
Martifer Solar offers a number of photovoltaic solutions, notable among them are the photovoltaic kits and the solar “smart park”.

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University of Arkansas Students Launch Start-up to Manufacture Biodegradable Plastic

cycleWood Solutions Inc. was formed in July 2010 by four graduate students at the University of Arkansas, who launched a startup company that would manufacture biodegradable plastic shopping bags. They harness the technology developed by University of Minnesota biochemist Simo Sarkanen, The founders formed the company after creating a business plan around the technology for an entrepreneurship class, whose aim was to build a viable business.

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New Study: Clean Energy Standards Barely Impact Small Business

Much has been written, including by myself, about the fact that small business organizations range form neutral to hostile on green issues.  There is a perception that environmental progress will cost small businesses resources they don’t have. The truth is that not much research has been conducted to prove or disprove that notion. Yesterday a study was released that shows just how little impact clean energy standards will have on small businesses. In fact, it concluded that the economic impacts…

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Biologically Inspired 'Artificial Leaves' Produce Electricity

This is a guest post by Colleen Mcguire. A North Carolina State University team has shown that water gel-based solar devices (called: “artificial leaves”) can behave like solar cells to create electricity. The analysis has been published on-line in the Journal of Materials Chemistry by Dr. Orlin Velev, an Invista Professor associated with Chemical and Bio-molecular Engineering. The results promote the idea of making solar cells that more closely simulate nature. They are also likely to be more affordable and…

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