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$300 Million Earmarked from Stimulus Bill for Alternative Energies

August 27, 2009 7:38 am | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

On Wednesday, Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the appropriation of $300 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for the Clean Cities program. The aim of the program is to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and speed the development of alternative energies. A major priority is creating the infrastructure necessary to support nationwide fleets of advanced technology vehicles.

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Global Warming or Global Cooling?

August 24, 2009 10:43 am | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

Gentlemen, start your debating—according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the July average was the highest recorded ocean temperature in 128 years. July’s worldwide average of 62.6 will revive the global warming debates, inasmuch as some will cite this as evidence of climate change.

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Now Twitter Wants to Know Where You Live

August 21, 2009 5:29 am | Comments

Burgeoning micro blogging and social networking tool Twitter has announced plans to add location based service to its platform. To date, Twitter’s API (Application Programming Interface) has only allowed developers to roll out location based services based on the information in the ‘location’ field of a user’s account, which really could say anything.

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The Tin Foil Hat Brigade Strikes Again

August 17, 2009 12:33 pm | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

In what’s sure to encourage conspiracy nuts worldwide, Britain has released the government's complete file on the "Rendlesham Forest Incident" of December 1980. The 191-page document was released as part of a larger cache of British “UFO files” covering the years 1981-1996. Lacking a concrete explanation, the government had nonetheless determined that the UFO spotted in Rendelsham posed no threat.

Simple Light Load Control Meets the New Energy Efficiency Standards

August 17, 2009 7:36 am | by Kevin Turchin, FAE Manager, ROHM Semiconductor USA | Comments

Energy efficiency standards have typically concentrated on two ends of the spectrum – full load efficiency and standby power. As a result, popular PWM buck regulators available today demonstrate high efficiency at full load (>80%) levels and incorporate standby circuitry to comply with the <1W and lower initiatives. Improved efficiency at all operating points is an important concern in the design of next generation “green” products.

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A Bold Claim: Chevy Volt Gets 230 MPG

August 11, 2009 6:53 am | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice….well, you know the rest. When Raser Technologies claimed their re-jiggered Electric Hummer got 100 miles per gallon, I thought they fudged a few numbers. But for GM to claim 230 MPG for the Volt…well, that’s taking a trip to fantasyland, with magical goblins and unicorns.

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July sees big jump in fuel efficiency of new cars

August 11, 2009 6:22 am | by Seth Borenstein, AP Science Writer | Comments

Cars and light trucks sold in July got more miles per gallon than those sold in previous months, say researchers, who credit the Cash for Clunkers program. The average mileage for new vehicles rose from 21.4 miles per gallon in June to 22.1 mpg in July. That may not sound like much, but it's

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Printable Solar Panels on the Cheap

August 6, 2009 12:40 pm | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

One of the hottest trends in power is “conductive ink”—that is, ink that conducts electricity. Thus, we’ve seen the emergence of ultra-thin power solutions such as Fraunhofer Research Institution's silk-screened batteries. One of the variants is printable solar cells, a technology still in its infancy. But the US Air Force, in conjunction with Plextronics, has developed what they purport to be a “significant step forward in printing inexpensive solar cells.”

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Industry groups sue over NYC e-waste recycling law

July 30, 2009 6:27 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) have filed a legal challenge against a New York City law mandating door-to-door collection of e-waste. Local Law No. 13, taking effect July 31st, forces all electronic manufacturers doing business in NYC to provide free door-to-door collection services for covered equipment.

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Nissan Unveils New E-Car Prototype

July 28, 2009 9:19 am | Comments

Nissan Motor today previewed its electric vehicle (EV) platform on a Tiida-based prototype. It also showcased a sophisticated EV-IT system developed to support electric driving 24/7. The dedicated EV platform is comprised of a highly rigid body, high-performance motor, compact lithium-ion battery with high power output and energy capacity.

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North Carolina Town Going Green With LED Technology

July 22, 2009 5:58 am | Comments

Philips Lumec has been chosen by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians of western North Carolina to light their downtown streetscapes with their environmentally responsible LED lighting solutions. In doing so, they clearly place this town of 14,500 residents, located on the South end of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, in the vanguard of communities choosing environmentally responsible LED lighting technologies.

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LED Controller Features 'In-Situ' Temperature Compensation

July 22, 2009 5:42 am | Comments

Leadis Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: LDIS), an analog and mixed-signal semiconductor developer of LED drivers for consumer electronic devices, today announced sample availability of the LDS9001 and LDS9003, two new LED controllers featuring Leadis' patent pending LED-Sense(TM) Temperature Compensation engine. This innovative feature allows for direct in-situ monitoring of the LED junction temperature without the need for an external temperature sensor

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Institute Unveils OLED that is 75% More Efficient

July 20, 2009 1:37 pm | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

The Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has purportedly created an Organic Light Emitting Diode that is 75% more efficient than previous models. Led by Prof. Kyung-Cheol Choi, the KAIST team discovered a new type of surface plasmon enhanced OLED. KAIST explains their finding thusly: “For surface plasmon localization, silver nanoparticles were thermally deposited in a high vacuum on cathode.

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GE Targets Net Zero Energy Homes by 2015

July 17, 2009 5:21 am | Comments

GE announced today that by 2015 it is developing a turn-key product portfolio that will empower consumers to build — both new home builders and existing homeowners — to efficiently consume, manage and generate electricity to enable an overall net zero annual energy.

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Coming Soon: Silk-Screened Batteries

July 14, 2009 10:36 am | by by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

Who knew those shady vendors hawking silk-screened t-shirts at tourist traps were leading the tech revolution? Actually, that claim belongs to the Fraunhofer Research Institution, but who’s keeping track? The German institute has developed a printable battery that is produced using a silk-screening process similar to that used in t-shirts.

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