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Energy

Slender-bodied solar panels colored with inkjet

Now, solar cells can be designed to be slender, light, and stretchy to rest on a soap bubble. The new cells competently trap energy from light, and they could all provide an alternative method to generate novel electronic devices like skin patches. Here, conventional sources of energy are inappropriate. The notable progress in electronic robotic skin, sensors for flying devices, and illness detectors have limited power. Somewhat than heavy batteries or a link to an electrical system, they preferred to use portable, ultrathin organic cells to harvest power from light from both indoors and outdoors. 

In now, extra thin solar cells were mainly designed by spin-coating or thermal evaporation, and they are not scalable, hence limiting the device’s geometry. That mechanic entailed using a transparent, brittle, flexible, and conductive material called indium tin oxide (ITO). This material acts as an electrode, and such problems were overcome by applying inkjet print to all formulated layers of the solar cell architecture.

Instead of opting not to use ITO, the team opted for a transparent, flexible, and conductive polymer known as PEDOT: PSS polystyrene sulfonate. The layers of the electrode cover a light-absorbing organic photovoltaic material. Parylene, elastic, impermeable, biocompatible protective casing can be used to cover the entire apparatus. 

However, inkjet printing is very accommodating to increase and reduce the expenses incurred during manufacturing because coming up with working inks was a considerable challenge. Inkjet printing is just a unique science. The intermolecular forces present in the sealed unit and the required ink all require to be prevail over to expel fine droplets from a small opening. Also, solvents are crucial components because when the ink is deposited, the drying affects the film’s quality. 

Once the ink is optimized for each layer of the apparatus, the solar cells print themselves onto the glass to examine their function. They attained a Power Conversion Efficiency of (PCE) of 4.73 percent, prevailing over the record of 4.1 percent for a wholly printed cell. The team confirmed that they could print a cell onto an ultrathin elastic substrate, enabling them to attain a 3.6 percent PCE. The group affirmed that the experiment results carried out mark a milestone for a new generation of versatile, ultra-weight printed solar cells, and they can act as a source of energy. The solar cells can also be integrated into the skin-based medical apparatus.  

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Space

Project Kuiper means a lot to Amazon than its response to SpaceX

On 30 July, the U.S Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proclaimed that the entity was allowed to deploy and supervise its Kuiper Constellation. The allowance came with the caveat of getting an assurance from Kuiper that will tamper with the recently legalized satellite operations. 

It appears to be a temptation when a mega constellation of many satellites is placed into the orbit and trigger a conflict between Elon Musk’s Starlink and Jeff Bezos Kuiper. It is not a big deal because those satellites are in the space, and what amount of space can fit two mega constellations? Some experts assert that the stuck game of Amazon will originate from the capability to incorporate the remaining ecosystem vertically. 

Amazon is unique in playing its games as opposed to SpaceX and OneWeb because they have some ongoing activities. If Kuiper manages to take the trophy, Amazon can offer both broadband accessibility to satellites and Amazon Web Services. Currently, Amazon already provides cloud computing services, data examination, and machine learning, among many more. 

The FCC authorized the liftoff of 3236 satellites; however, only a few satellites were launched without hesitation. Currently, Amazon anticipates launching half of the 2026 satellites and preserving the operating license it got from Federal Communication Commission. 

Amazon plans on investing $10 billion that will help in the making of the constellation. The satellites will then surround the earth, what we call ‘low earth orbit.’ The low earth orbit (LEO) can be any orbital height of fewer than 2000 kilometers. Those satellites will operate their missions in a Ka-band that ranges from 26.5 to 40HZ. 

A standard talk that exists between broadband developing entities is that those constellations will deliver access to broadband. In the real sense, terrestrial fiber or cellular network has become the heartbeat, except for those people residing in the remote areas. Tim Farrar, a satellite communication consultant, said that it would appear deluded when the entities fight against terrestrial providers. Tim added that broadband connectivity is meant for those customers who lack internet connectivity options. 

The last-resort users can be plants, weathering the costly expenses of satellite broadband like aviation, oil, and gas. Lots of money can be made from such plants than just making excess satellites and connect them to one rural subscriber. What such plants have in common is data since it helps in crushing, moving, and storing vast amounts of data. 

Categories
Energy

Electric vehicles that started back in the 1990s

In 2020, there are about 50 diverse electric motors present in the market. Over half of them are manufactured by mainstream vehicle manufacturers such as BMW, Tesla, Renault, Audi, Hyundai, and Volkswagen. That huge figure is linked to that registered in the 2010s, where only 50% of electric vehicles were available in the market. Going back in the 1990s where many firms were manufacturing the electric cars, we see that the electric vehicle market has progressed at an impressive rate in less than thirty years. 

Let us discuss electric vehicles that powered the market back in the 1990s

  1. CHRYSLER TEVAN (1993-1995)

TEVan was manufactured between 1993 to 1995, and it was the second type of Town and Country semi van. The vehicle features a nickel-cadmium battery container. During that period, Lithium-ion batteries were not available. Those batteries present produced 48kW electric car power that, in turn, produced 65 horsepower. The car could go for 80 miles upon a single charge; however, the actual ratings were near 60 miles.

The TEVan was rather primitive as compared to presently manufactured electric vehicles. Chrysler built 56 parts and traded out them for $120,000 to each EV services. 

  1. SOLECTRIA FORCE (1995-1997)

The Solectria motor is known for lightweight composition. The Metro was installed with a lead-acid battery container, an AC motor composed of three stages, and a single-speed gearbox.  

The Solectria vehicle was able to go for top speeds of about 70 mph, and it only required nine seconds to increase the speed from zero to fifty mph. That range was high as 80 miles at a stable velocity of about 45 mph.  

The vehicle also included a reproductive braking structure. Approximately 400 cars were transformed and given out as preliminary operation or just traded to consumers.

  1. SOLECTRIA SUNRISE (1996)

The Sunrise vehicle was more of an aerodynamic than the Geo Metro, where it comprised of covered rear wheels and double-door coupe design. The Sunrise’s appearance was manufactured from lightweight compound material, making the car grind a coefficient of 0.17. the car combined a 50-kW electric vehicle with a nickel-metal hydride battery.  

The car drove for about 217 miles from Boston to New York City without charging the battery again. That made the vehicle go for more than 300 miles journey on the alone charge.

The sad part is that Sunrise did not make it to the production because various small prototypes manufactured were tested.

  1. GENERAL MOTORS EV1 (1996-1999)

This is the most notable and iconic Electric Vehicle from 1990s. Well, mainly this is because it was the foremost Electric vehicle for the public use from the key car maker. In addition, it became a discussion of a documentary movie that was entitled ‘Who killed Electric car?’ This film went on to claim that EV1 system was cut short as it posed threat to the oil industry. EV1 was launched in 1996 and it had two door layout as well as an aerodynamic body. 

Categories
Energy

Germany is cooperating with Kenya to help the country transition to clean energy

Kenya’s energy sector expert in petroleum products, Mr. Wachira, gave a prescription to the country on how the energy sector can transition to the net-zero carbon emission ecosystem. He adds that this transition will continue to occur in other countries, especially with the current coronavirus pandemic conditions. 

All nations are working towards maintaining an emission-free ecosystem, especially now that most businesses minimize expenses after the massive impact of the coronavirus. Mr. Wachira’s observations can be supported by the various developing countries which are fully venturing renewables and electric vehicles. 

The switch to renewable or clean energy has electric vehicles to thank after the cars kindled a remarkable desire by the car owners to minimize pollution in the transportation sector. For instance, Germany is witnessing this positive trend with its energy sector shifting from coal, natural gas, and nuclear energy to renewables in what the nation terms as “energiewende.” 

Germany’s vision is to achieve zero-emissions by 2050. This vision is the backbone of Germany’s Climate Protection Plan since it corresponds to the Paris Agreement regulations. The Plan details goals and strategies that will ensure the attainment of an emission-free environment. 

Germany is one of the climate-change international financiers for developing nations with a currently expected contribution of four billion euros in 2020. The future systems will be running on geothermal, wind, and solar energy in addition to other renewables. 

Additionally, various countries are developing policies to support renewable energy usage to minimize global warming induced by emissions. Kenya is a country endowed with vast renewable energy resources compared to Germany. While Kenya stands at a rate of 90% in renewables, Germany operates at close to half this percentage. 

Although Kenya has these substantial resources in renewable energy, it is still struggling with high carbon emissions due to the high quantity of ICE vehicles circulating the economy. Kenya is even challenged in industrial development since most of the systems are dependent on fossil fuel energy. 

Germany has been collaborating with Kenya for two decades to transform the country with renewable energy projects. The advantage of implementing such projects is that Kenya is in an appropriate position to fully transition to renewables like wind, geothermal, hydropower, and solar energy at an affordable cost. 

One of the German-funded corporations has developed over 300 megawatts of renewables in Kenya. A perfect example is the Olkaria power plant, which has connected millions of Kenyans to the power source. Kenyans are slowly shifting to clean energy abandoning the pollutive energy sources. 

In conclusion, projects like e-mobility in Kisumu through e-cargo transporters will help initiate the transition to clean energy in the city. Germany is assisting Kenya through other energy projects through loans, providing technical knowledge, and other financial services. 

Categories
Space

Manufacturers working on a suitable mechanism to handle the heat problem in the small satellites

With the technological advancement of small satellites, manufacturers note that they require mechanisms to minimize the impact of the excess heat expended by these systems. 

Small satellites are progressively tackling more data ranging from satellite imagery data to observatory data for the earthbound terrestrial sensors and smart devices. The vice president of spaceship development and production for Planet, Chester Gillmore, stated in a SpaceNews virtual interview that Planet is expanding its optical imagery payload memory from 16 gigabytes to 2 terabytes. This move will enable the firm’s satellites to handle its operations efficiently without lagging.

Gillmore adds that this substantial memory expansion is part of the company’s adjustment to meet the industry’s new trend of downscaling electronic components. The resultant challenge with this trend is the overheating of the electronic systems as they try to release heat and cool down. 

This thermal management problem may be accounted for as a result of Planet designing its Dove cubesat to be within the spacecraft. Manufacturers that develop theirs on the outside part of the craft also experience this problem.

AAC Clyde Space‘s strategist, Craig Clarke, says that AAC will be focusing on thermal management as the roadmap for technological expansion. He adds that expending such a substantial quantity of heat energy on a small satellite will be tedious. Thus, they are researching the appropriate method that will solve this enigma.

The lead director of Space and Airborne Systems Multi-Domain Architecture Group for L3Harris Technologies, Tim Lynch, articulated that energy-consuming spaceship operations like information exchange can produce high quantities of unneeded heat.

Lynch states that the compact design of the electronic components makes imperatively tedious to expend the heat generated within these systems. Heat containment is the new challenge for such small satellite startup companies.

Satellite manufacturers and their research and development departments are working on a long-term formula to ensure the successful dissipation of this unwanted heat from smallsats. Carbice, an Atalanta smallsat firm, hopes to launch its new miniature carbon fiber thermal containment material aboard their spacecraft.

Cubesat manufacturer Pumpkin, and research analytics company Creare of Hanover, gave out a paper in the conference concerning the thermal management mechanism they have been working on with the US Air Force Research Laboratory. This mechanism entails heat dissipation into space and the heat-entrapment pipes and storage system that facilitates this operation.

Finally, the smallsat industry’s technological trends will ensure its growth and prevalence in the satellite sector. This industry must arm itself to tackle such uprising challenges and others like cybersecurity and sensor technology evolution.

Categories
Energy

Xpeng motors who happens to be Tesla’s competitor has filed for a New York Initial Public Offering (IPO)

Chinese EV start-up Xpeng Motors has been able to file for an Initial Public Offering on the New York stock market, as per an official filing. 

Whereas the corporation did not reveal how may class average shares it would vend, Xpeng Motors stated that it would vend 429,846,136 class B average shares, as per the securities and exchange commission filing publicized on Friday. It also indicated that it plans to be able to raise a placeholder value of $100 million, a number that shall probably alter.

Every class A ordinary share shall have one vote whereas every class B ordinary share shall offer the holder 10 votes.

The filing happens after CNBC proclaimed that it had come up with $400 million from Alibaba, one of the most significant stakeholders, the Qatar Investment Authority, as well as Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala. Abu Dhabi and Qatar Investment Authority jointly invested $100 million each a fragment of that round.

Xpeng’s ambition for New York Initial Public Offering arises amidst intensifying tension between America and China that have threatened Chinese companies’ listing on the Wall Street.

The Initial Public Offering shall offer Xpeng another injection of money as it confronts fierce, stiff competition in China from a number of operators consisting of Li Automobiles that recently cited in America. WM Motor and Nio. Nonetheless, the corporation also competes against Tesla that has seemed to accelerate its existence in China with a factory based in Shanghai.

At the onset of this year, Tesla commenced the roll-out of its Model 3 sedan designed in the factory in Shanghai to users in China.

Xpeng presently bears two automobiles on the market that is the G3 SUV as well as the P7 sedan. The last contests against Tesla’s Model 3.

G3 manufacturing commenced in 2018 around November, and as of the 31st of July 2020, Xpeng stated that it had supplied 18,741 components to consumers. The P7 commenced to roll-out to the consumers in May this year as of the 31st Of July, Xpeng had supplied 1,966 components of the cars to consumers.

The firm is intending to unveil a third electric car sedan in 2021, the firm stated in the SEC filing.

Xpeng that was initiated in 2015 has attempted to distinguish itself from competitors by accepting its investment in software. The firm has a characteristic dubbed as XPILOT, which offers automobiles some semi-independent driving characteristics such as automated parking. XPILOT is advanced in-house, and Xpeng is placing it as a competitor to the Tesla’s Autopilot. 

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Energy

Apple intends to achieve 100% Carbon Neutral before the year 2030, incorporating Supply Chain and their products

Apple is making considerable transformations to its products and supply chain by entrusting to be 100 percent carbon-neutral before the year 2030. The company declared through its official website that it is carbon neutral for industrial emissions all over the world and intends to bring its full carbon footprint to be net-zero. If it thrives in doing this before the year 2030, it will have accomplished its 2050 IPCC goals 20 years earlier.

Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, said in a statement that businesses have a weighty opportunity to help in building a much sustainable prospect, one born of their general concern for the planet they share. The novelty powering their environmental expedition is excellent for the earth. Still, they have also assisted them in making their products much energy-efficient and conveying new sources of clean power online. Climate action could be the groundwork for a new age of creative potential, robust economic growth, and job creation. With their assurance of carbon neutrality, they anticipate being a ripple in the pond that produces a much more significant change. 

Apple anticipates being the head among its business peers by developing a roadmap for other businesses. Business giants like Amazon, for instance, are decreasing their effects on climate, and most currently have their ideas and challenges. Apple launched its 2020 Environmental Progress Report in the previous month, and in the report, the firm specified its strategies to decrease emissions by 75 percent by the year 2030. Also, in the plans, the company detailed how they will create innovative carbon-removal resolutions for the other 25 percent of its footprint.

Apple’s Chief Operating Officer, Jeff Williams, stated that the Supplier Clean Energy Program is at the heart of Apple’s assurance of making excellent products with greener industrialization. He added that their suppliers are taking noteworthy actions in joining them .in the work, and they anticipate seeing more daring pledges as they carry on with addressing their environmental effect. 

One way Apple is backing the efforts is by building an Impact Accelerator plan that will venture into secondary-owned companies that positively influence its supply chain. Apple will also venture into societies that are excessively impacted by environmental dangers. Apple, as part of that lately, announced a $100 million Justice Initiative and Racial Equity to center mainly economic equality, education, and criminal justice improvement.

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Coronavirus

Amazon announces its intention to invest in the satellite industry after massive annual quarter profits

The coronavirus pandemic continues to flourish Amazon’s operations due to the increase in demand for goods by households and businesses. As such, the enterprise’s profit margin and influence have doubled due to its extensive use during the current pandemic. 

The online business intends to invest in satellite bands to enhance network connectivity around the world. The move, aimed at providing a significant amount of communication will enable faster online operations without glitches that might hamper business operations. 

The accompany accrued the larges profits in its second quarter, the highest figure ever recorded in the last 26 years. Additionally, the company’s revenue rose to 40% when the government enforced lockdowns and cessation of movement. The laid down policies stimulated the company’s operations due to the closure of stores.

The gained revenues escalated compared to last year’s sales performance. Also, Amazon’s international operations received a boosted performance due to the pandemic’s versatility that affected various countries with similar fates as North America.

Subsequently, Amazon Web Services (AWS) received an elevated demand due to the need for cloud computing activities. The total revenue of the section thus escalated compared to the past years as a result of the pandemic. 

The market cap widened due to the increase in Amazon stock prices. Additionally, the firm’s net income doubled from the revenue of services provided by the firm in all business segments. 

According to Katie, past speculations on Amazon’s expected loss due to its stores’ closure conflicts with the company’s success. The current situation and enforcement of coronavirus pandemic safety measures have no significant impact on the company’s advancement. In contrast, the pandemic is benefitting the company more than anticipated by various analysts. 

The aggressive presence of the company during the pandemic enables it to unveil new operations for active business practices. Because of this, Amazon intends to invest in communication platforms for the efficient running of its operations. The company’s dominance in the provision of goods and services will thus skyrocket due to the increased performance of the firm’s operations. 

In conclusion, the accrued profits will enhance productivity in the firm’s provision of services during and after the pandemic. Amazon’s continued presence will further connect it to its customers regardless of the resumption of normalcy after the epidemic. Additionally, the move will integrate other significant firms to offer support to the project. 

Categories
Energy

Wind Farms constructed on Peat Bogs rich in Carbon, fail to combat Climate Change

Currently, the UK Wind Power accounts for almost 30% of all productions of electricity. Wind turbines constructed on grounds now produce an affordable form of energy. A wind farm can help cut off greenhouse productions by using fossil fuels to produce electricity. 

However, the question remains still; what of those wind turbines constructed on top of sensitive natural grounds? Does low-carbon energy help cut off emissions by effectively trapping Carbon and prevent it from leaking into the atmosphere? 

In a recently conducted research, wind farms in Spain are constructed on unique peat bogs that preserve vast amounts of planet-warming Carbon. Since those environments are poorly located, there is a golden chance to look at it as it seems that the same mistake is being made in many other regions throughout Europe and the UK. 

Europe’s Unmapped Peatlands in Peril  

In a definition, Peatlands are a natural carbon sink that contains 20 percent of the stored Carbon in soils globally. Since some Peatlands cannot be located, many have not considered as much as they play a vital role in reducing climate change. Blanket bogs are uncommon and distinctive types of peatland, which covers whole landscapes with unique vegetation. They are made up of cotton grass, Sphagnum mosses, and heather, and it is an active species for storing Carbon. 

In the UK and Ireland, blanket bogs cover massive extensions and are a vital part of the landscape in flow Country, an area found in the north of Scotland, in the north and the south of Pennines in England. In Spain or France, that type of environment is not common, although the research unleashed 14 unrecorded and bare blanket bogs found in northern Spain, representing the southernmost part of Europe.  

Peatlands and blanket bogs, to be specific, face many pressures all over Europe. Some of these include; burning as a way of improving grazing and provide clean fields for sports activities, overgrazing, drainage to allow planting of crops and commercial forests, developments of wind farms, among others. Such events can change the natural working of Peatlands entirely from reducing climate change and become sources of leaking greenhouse gases.

Wind farms are the best ways to produce clean energy; however, the point they are constructed requires careful consideration. It sounds sardonic when one of the artificial types of equipment fighting climate change turns into the obstructive tool if it interferes with another native resolution to the crisis. 

Categories
Energy

Road to net-zero: The European oil giants outpace United States of America firms on climate objectives

The intense and developing demands on gas and oil companies to considerably reconfigure their center businesses to acknowledge a lower-carbon schedule could shortly pilot to permanent changes in the power commodity marketplace. 

Stakeholders and policymakers globally are quickly boosting their spotlight on social, environmental, or factors on ESG. Gas and oil firms jeopardize losing billions of dollars in a venture fund if they fail to adjust.

The risks are high, especially in the United States of America, since any investor capital cuts could materially affect the oil and gas supply. 

The European Commission approved a law targeting low carbon emissions transversely the area before the year 2050, and stakeholders of most European firms have acknowledged legally obligatory resolutions requiring decarbonization.

They will come if you build it.

European incorporated oil giants have steered the charge, confirming the transition inevitability and the challenge scale, as they encounter the likelihood that the demand for petrol could heighten in the forthcoming ten years. However, the majors are drifting at different rates in their attempts to lessen their carbon footsteps.

Ken Medlock, the chief manager of the Center for Energy Studies at Baker Institute of Rice University for Public Policy, stated that most European companies had already commenced making milestones to elevate ESG stakeholder worry into their venture portfolios. He added that most of it is philosophical on where those business assets are found. 

Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Eni SpA, BP PLC, TOTAL SE, Repsol SA, and Equinor ASA are operating to go green and diversify their portfolios. They do this by switching to natural gas, recyclables, and electricity to accomplish self-imposed goals of carbon emissions.

Margaret Peloso, an associate environmentally-focused on law firm Vinson & Elkins, confirmed during July 9 online meeting hosted by S & Elkins Global Ratings that Repsol among other EU giants ought to have high praise for setting targets. However, when you observe them, there is a small element of “if you build it, they will come” you place a determined aim and find out how to get there.

Margaret added that if your idea entails venturing a lot of funds into lower-margin, low-carbon sections and you believe it will be backed by income emerging from additional conventional activities, the pricing set blows the thesis out of water.  

In December 2019, the European Commission initiated its European Green Deal, an economy-wide idea to meet zero-carbon emissions before the year 2050.