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The first superlaser in the project is to be built near Prague, with a goal of achieving exawatt class, which would make it at least a hundred times more powerful than anything that exists today.

The purpose of the Extreme Light Infrastructure (ELI), as its known, is first and foremost to serve as a research tool. Such a laser could be used to develop new cancer diagnosis and treatments as well as possible ways to deal with nuclear waste. In addition, the simple existence and experimentation with such a powerful laser could expand knowledge of nanoscience and molecular biology.

The ELI project was not easily won, as there were five countries lobbying to have it in their home states, and thereafter there was some bit of contention among the commissioners regarding feasibility and financing of the project. With the win, though, the Czech Republic will be sit at the forefront of optic and photonic research, adding to its already impressive résumé; for the past ten years, Prague has hosted Precision Automated Laser Signals (PALS), one of the premier laser systems in all of Europe. The installation will signal another milestone as well; the ELI venture will be the first big research project funded by the EU that will be located in an Eastern European country.

Slated to become operational by 2015, and located in Dolní B?ežany, near Prague, the superlaser will operate using super-short pulses of very high energy particle and radiation beams, with each pulse lasting just 1.5 x 10-14 of a second, more than enough time to conduct high energy research experiments.

The installation in Prague will be followed up by projects in Hungary and then Romania, with each specializing in different areas of research; all of which will culminate in the development of a fourth super-super laser in an as yet to be decided location, which is expected to have twice the power of the original three lasers (though current plans have it comprised of 10 beans) which should add up to 200 petawatts of power; the theoretical limit for lasers.
The project is expected to cost in the neighborhood of €700 million.

Source: PhysOrg

 

Developed by an interdisciplinary team at the University of Alberta and Canada's National Institute for Nanotechnology, this new process was developed to address some of the problems associated with the introduction of stainless steel into the human body.

Implanted biomedical devices, such as cardiac stents, are implanted in over 2 million people every year, with the majority made from stainless steel. Stainless steel has many benefits -- strength, generally stability, and the ability to maintain the required shape long after it has been implanted. But, it can also cause severe problems, including blood clotting if implanted in an artery, or an allergenic response due to release of metal ions such as nickel ions.

The University of Alberta campus is home to a highly multidisciplinary group of researchers, the CIHR Team in for Glyconanotechnology in Transplantation, that is looking to develop new synthetic nanomaterials that modify the body's immune response before an organ transplant. The ultimate goal is to allow cross-blood type organ transplants, meaning that blood types would not necessarily need to be matched between donor and recipient when an organ becomes available for transplantation. Developing new nanomaterials that engage and interact with the body's immune system are an important step in the process. In order to overcome the complex range of requirements and issues, the project team drew on expertise from three major areas: surface science chemistry and engineering, carbohydrate chemistry, and immunology and medicine.

For the transplantation goals of the project, sophisticated carbohydrate (sugar) molecules needed to be attached to the stainless steel surface to bring about the necessary interaction with the body's immune system. Its inherent stainless characteristic makes stainless steel a difficult material to augment with new functions, particularly with the controlled and close-to-perfect coverage needed for biomedical implants. The Edmonton-based team found that by first coating the surface of the stainless steel with a very thin layer (60 atoms deep) of glass silica using a technique available at the National Institute for Nanotechnology, called Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD), they could overcome the inherent non-reactivity of the stainless steel. The silica provide a well-defined "chemical handle" through which the carbohydrate molecules, prepared in the Alberta Ingenuity Centre for Carbohydrate Science, could be attached. Once the stainless steel had been controlled, the researchers demonstrated that the carbohydrate molecules covered the stainless steel in a highly controlled way, and in the correct orientation to interact with the immune system.

Source: Science Daily

 

It seems it might be something as mundane as adding in the tiny forces that occur when minute traces of heat from the plutonium on board the probes bounce off their receiving dishes, creating a counterforce, which in turn, causes the craft to slow; if ever so slightly.

The Pioneer anomaly, as it’s come to be known, has had physicists scratching their heads ever since an astronomer by the name of John Anderson, working for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, back in 1980, noticed a discrepancy between the slowdown rate projections for the craft and the rates they were actually experiencing, which led to the basic question, how could both probes be slowing down faster than the laws of physics projected? Possible explanations ranged from unknown mechanical issues with both craft, to dark matter pushing back, to possible flaws in the physics theories themselves.

But now, Frederico Francisco of the Instituto de Plasmas e Fusao Nuclear, Lisbon Portugal and colleagues, as they describe in their paper published inarXiv, seem to have solved the problem using a simple old technology.

Schematics of the configuration of Lambertian sources used to model the lateral walls of the main equipment compartment.

Suspecting that heat was involved, they started with follow-up work by Anderson in 2002 and Slava Turyshev in 2006, also from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratories, who both showed that heat released from the plutonium onboard the spacecraft could very well explain a slowdown. Unfortunately, both concluded that such heat emissions could not possibly account for the amount of slowdown seen. But this was because neither man thought to consider the impact of heat hitting the backside of the satellite dish (antennae) and then bouncing back. Francisco and his team used a computer modeling technique called Phong shading to show how the flow of heat as it was emitted from the main equipment compartment could emanate outwards, eventually bouncing off the back of the dish, resulting in just enough counterforce to explain the gravitational discrepancy.

Case closed, as far as Francisco et al are concerned, but of course this being science, others will have to replicate the results before any sort of consensus can be found.

Source: PhysOrg

 

Roughly 7,000 rural communities in the U.S. deal with sewage the old-fashioned way: by dumping it into an open holding pond and letting sunlight and bacteria do the rest. Not only do these ponds smell bad, but it takes the bacteria a long time to render the sewage nonhazardous, a situation that could pose a contamination risk to waterways.

Poo Lagoon - These "Poo-Gloos," which normally rest on the bottom of a wastewater pond, await installation. Bacteria living in the domes break down contaminates into compounds such as carbon dioxide. Aerators within them keep oxygen flowing to the microbes. Wastewater Compliance Systems.

Wastewater-treatment plants, the most common solution, cost upward of $2 million to build, according to Kraig Johnson, the chief technology officer of Salt Lake City–based Wastewater Compliance Systems. Johnson, who researched biological solutions for sewage treatment at the University of Utah, is pilot-testing a simple and cheap solution: BioDomes, which house bacteria that break down contaminants in sewage.

So far, 200 BioDomes (colloquially known as Poo-Gloos) are cleaning up sewage in six states, including Alabama and Nevada, and early data suggests that they might be as efficient as mechanical wastewater-treatment plants.

Source: PopSci

 

Air capture, in which carbon dioxide is removed from the atmosphere, has been touted as a potentially promising way to tackle climate change. That's because unlike carbon capture from power plant flue gases, the technology has the potential to reduce existing CO2 levels, rather than simply slowing the rate of increase.

Power.jpg

To demonstrate that the technology works, Christopher Jones at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta tested a CO2 absorbent based on amines - the chemicals predominantly used in power plant carbon capture trials - on gases with CO2 concentrations similar to those found in ambient air.

He found the material was able to repeatedly extract CO2 from the gas without being degraded, which will be vital if the technology is to be used economically on a wide-scale.

However, unlike the liquid amines typically used in power plant carbon capture, which consume large amounts of energy as they must be heated to very high temperatures to re-release their stored CO2, Jones' team has developed a new class of the material called hyperbranched aminosilica, in which the amine is held on a solid porous silica substrate.

Solid amines release the stored CO2 when heated to just 110 degrees Celsius - much lower than the temperatures required by the water-based liquid amine solutions - reducing the amount of energy required by 75 per cent.

This also means the energy needed could be supplied by widely available sources such as waste heat from industrial plants, says Peter Eisenberger of air capture company Global Thermostat, based in New York. The energy could also be supplied by renewable sources such as solar power, he says. The captured CO2 could then be fed to algae, which absorb the gas to produce biofuel and biochar.

Jones is working with the company to test a pilot air capture plant in Menlo Park, California, which is absorbing 2 tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere each day. A commercial plant could absorb 1 million tonnes of CO2 per day, says Eisenberger.

Source: NewScientist

 

Chenglong Li, Ph.D., an assistant professor of medicinal chemistry and pharmacognosy at The Ohio State University (OSU), is leveraging a powerful computer cluster at the Ohio Supercomputer Center (OSC) to develop a drug that will block the small protein molecule Interleukin-6 (IL-6). The body normally produces this immune-response messenger to combat infections, burns, traumatic injuries, etc. Scientists have found, however, that in people who have cancer, the body fails to turn off the response and overproduces IL-6.

"There is an inherent connection between inflammation and cancer," explained Li. "In the case of breast cancers, a medical review systematically tabulated IL-6 levels in various categories of cancer patients, all showing that IL-6 levels elevated up to 40-fold, especially in later stages, metastatic cases and recurrent cases."

In 2002, Japanese researchers found that a natural, non-toxic molecule created by marine bacteria -- madindoline A (MDL-A) -- could be used to mildly suppress the IL-6 signal. Unfortunately, the researchers also found the molecule wouldn't bind strongly enough to be effective as a cancer drug and would be too difficult and expensive to synthesize commercially. And, most surprisingly, they found the bacteria soon mutated to produce a different, totally ineffectual compound. Around the same time, Stanford scientists were able to construct a static image of the crystal structure of IL-6 and two additional proteins.

An electrostatic representation (red: negative; blue: positive; white: hydrophobic) created at the Ohio Supercomputer Center by Ohio State’s Chenglong Li, Ph.D., shows IL-6 in ribbon representation. The two larger yellow ellipses indicate the two binding "hot spots" between IL-6 and GP130, key to blocking a protein that plays a role in breast and prostate cancer. (Credit: Chenglong Li/OSU)

Li recognized the potential of these initial insights and partnered last year with an organic chemist and a cancer biologist at OSU's James Cancer Hospital to further investigate, using an OSC supercomputer to construct malleable, three-dimensional color simulations of the protein complex.

"The proximity of two outstanding research organizations -- the James Cancer Hospital and OSC -- provide a potent enticement for top medical investigators, such as Dr. Li, to conduct their vital computational research programs at Ohio State University," said Ashok Krishnamurthy, interim co-executive director of OSC.

"We proposed using computational intelligence to re-engineer a new set of compounds that not only preserve the original properties, but also would be more potent and efficient," Li said. "Our initial feasibility study pointed to compounds with a high potential to be developed into a non-toxic, orally available drug."

Li accessed 64 nodes of OSC's Glenn IBM 1350 Opteron cluster to simulate IL-6 and the two additional helper proteins needed to convey the signal: the receptor IL-6R and the common signal-transducing receptor GP130. Two full sets of the three proteins combine to form a six-sided molecular machine, or "hexamer," that transmits the signals that will, in time, cause cellular inflammation and, potentially, cancer.

Li employed the AMBER (Assisted Model Building with Energy Refinement) and AutoDock molecular modeling simulation software packages to help define the interactions between those proteins and the strength of their binding at five "hot spots" found in each half of the IL-6/IL-6R/GP130 hexamer.

By plugging small molecules, like MDL-A, into any of those hot spots, Li could block the hexamer from forming. So, he examined the binding strength of MDL-A at each of the hexamer hotspots, identifying most promising location, which turned out to be between IL-6 and the first segment, or modular domain (D1), of the GP130.

To design a derivative of MDL-A that would dock with D1 at that specific hot spot, Li used the CombiGlide screening program to search through more than 6,000 drug fragments. So far, he has identified two potential solutions by combining the "top" half of the MDL-A molecule with the "bottom" half of a benzyl molecule or a pyrazole molecule. These candidates preserve the important binding features of the MDL-A, while yielding molecules with strong molecular bindings that also are easier to synthesize than the original MDL-A.

"While we didn't promise to have a drug fully developed within the two years of the project, we're making excellent progress," said Li. "The current research offers us an exciting new therapeutic paradigm: targeting tumor microenvironment and inhibiting tumor stem cell renewal, leading to a really effective way to overcome breast tumor drug resistance, inhibiting tumor metastasis and stopping tumor recurrence."

While not yet effective enough to be considered a viable drug, laboratory tests on tissue samples have verified the higher potency of the derivatives over the original MDL-A. Team members are preparing for more sophisticated testing in a lengthy and carefully monitored evaluation process.

Li's project is funded by a grant from the Department of Defense (CDMRP grant number BC095473) and supported by the award of an OSC Discovery Account. The largest funding areas of Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) are breast cancer, prostate cancer and ovarian cancer. Another Defense CDMRP grant involving Li supports a concurrent OSU investigation of the similar role that IL-6 plays in causing prostate cancer. Those projects are being conducted in collaboration with Li's Medicinal Chemistry colleague, Dr. James Fuchs, as well as Drs. Tushar Patel, Greg Lesinski and Don Benson at OSU's College of Medicine and James Cancer Hospital, and Dr. Jiayuh Lin at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus.

"In addition to leading the center's user group this year, the number and depth of Dr. Li's computational chemistry projects have ranked him one of our most prolific research clients," Krishnamurthy noted.

Source: Science Daily

 

This new particle, also known as the anti-alpha, is the heaviest antinucleus ever detected, topping a discovery announced by the same collaboration just last year.
The new record will likely stand far longer, the scientists say, because the next weightier antimatter nucleus that does not undergo radioactive decay is predicted to be a million times more rare - and out of reach of today's technology.

"This discovery highlights the extraordinary capabilities of RHIC to investigate fundamental questions about the nature of matter, antimatter, and the early universe," said William F. Brinkman, Director of the DOE Office of Science.
Steven Vigdor, Brookhaven's Associate Lab Director for Nuclear and Particle Physics, who leads the RHIC program, said, "Barring a new breakthrough in accelerator technology, or the discovery of a completely new production mechanism, it is likely that antihelium-4 will remain the heaviest stable antimatter nucleus observed for the foreseeable future."
The STAR physicists describe the discovery in a paper in Nature, published online April 24, 2011.

The ability to create and study antimatter in conditions similar to those of theearly universe is no small matter: One of the great mysteries of physics is why our universe appears to be made entirely of ordinary matter when matter and antimatter are understood to have been created in equal amounts at the time of the Big Bang.

At RHIC, head-on collisions of gold ions moving at nearly the speed of light simulate conditions just after the Big Bang. In these atomic smashups, quarks and antiquarks likewise emerge with approximately equal abundance. A major fraction of the stable antimatter produced in RHIC collisions leaves a clear signal in the STAR detector before annihilating with ordinary matter in the outer part of the experimental apparatus.

By sifting through data for half a trillion charged particles emitted from almost one billion collisions, the STAR collaboration has detected 18 examples of the unique "signature" of the antihelium-4 nucleus. Consisting of two antiprotons and two antineutrons in a stable bound state that does not undergo radioactive decay, the antihelium-4 nucleus has a negative electric charge that is twice that of an electron, while its mass is very close to four times that of a proton. Data plots show that the newly discovered anti-alphas are very cleanly separated from the lighter isotopes, and are at the expected mass.

Anti-helium discovered in the heart of STAR

The scientists also measured the antihelium-4 production rate in nuclear interactions, and found that it is consistent with expectations based on a statistical coalescence of antiquarks from the soup of quarks and antiquarks generated in RHIC collisions. But the fact that 12 antiquarks combine to build such a complex antinucleus in a way that bears out these predictions is really quite remarkable considering it all takes place in the midst of rapidly expanding matter created at trillions of degrees and surviving for only ten trillionths of a trillionth of a second.

Knowing the production rate of these antinuclei is important to a wide range of scientific disciplines, including searches for new phenomena in the cosmos. For example, it ties in with the scientific goals of an experiment known as the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), which will be delivered to the International Space Station via one of the last space shuttle missions, currently scheduled for launch in late April 2011. This experiment will search for antimatter in space.

"If AMS were to find evidence for the existence of bulk antimatter elsewhere in the cosmos, the new measurement from the STAR experiment would provide the quantitative background rate for comparison," said Hank Crawford, a STAR collaborator from the University of California, Berkeley, Space Sciences Laboratory. "An observation of antihelium-4 by the AMS experiment could indicate the existence of large quantities of antimatter somehow segregated from the matter in our universe," he said.

Anti-helium discovered in the heart of STAR

In 2010, the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the European laboratory for nuclear and particle physics research, began its own collisions of heavy nuclei at energies more than an order of magnitude higher than at RHIC. Experiments there also have the capability to study production of antinuclei, and it will be interesting to see what those experiments find at higher energies.

"The discovery of the antihelium-4 nucleus also has special synergy with a major scientific anniversary: the 100th anniversary of Ernest Rutherford's seminal gold foil experiments, in which he used ordinary-matter helium-4 (alpha) particles to probe the structure of matter," said Brookhaven physicist Aihong Tang, a member of the STAR collaboration and a lead author on the Nature paper. "These experiments, conducted in 1911, established the very existence of atomic nuclei for the first time, and marked the dawn of our modern understanding of atoms."

Source: PhysOrg

 

Procuratura din Manhattan va cere marti retragerea tuturor acuzatiilor formulate impotriva lui Dominique Strauss-Kahn, au declarat surse judiciare, citate de New York Post, in editia online de duminica.

Acuzarea urmeaza sa depuna o motiune in care va recunoaste ca acuzatiile nu pot fi dovedite dincolo de orice indoiala, din cauza problemelor de credibilitate ale reclamantei.

Surse din cadrul procuraturii au afirmat ca este posibil ca motiunea sa includa si detalii care nu au fost inca dezvaluite in legatura cu camerista care l-a acuzat pe Dominique Strauss-Kahn de agresiune sexuala.

Potrivit New York Post, magistratii aproba in general acest tip de motiune pe loc, ceea ce inseamna ca fostul director FMI ar putea pleca spre Franta in scurt timp.

Biroul procurorului din Manhattan a convocat-o pe Nafissatou Diallo pentru luni la pranz, cu o zi inaintea urmatoarei audieri a lui Dominique Strauss-Kahn. Avocatul ei, Kenneth Thompson, a declarat sambata ca este convins ca nu poate explica aceasta convocare decat prin faptul ca procuratura va renunta complet la acuzatii sau va retrage o parte dintre acestea.

Sursa: bzi.ro

 

Researchers at MIT have found a way to make significant improvements to the power-conversion efficiency of solar cells by enlisting the services of tiny viruses to perform detailed assembly work at the microscopic level.

In a solar cell, sunlight hits a light-harvesting material, causing it to release electrons that can be harnessed to produce an electric current. The new MIT research, published online this week in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, is based on findings that carbon nanotubes — microscopic, hollow cylinders of pure carbon — can enhance the efficiency of electron collection from a solar cell's surface.

Previous attempts to use the nanotubes, however, had been thwarted by two problems. First, the making of carbon nanotubes generally produces a mix of two types, some of which act as semiconductors (sometimes allowing an electric current to flow, sometimes not) or metals (which act like wires, allowing current to flow easily). The new research, for the first time, showed that the effects of these two types tend to be different, because the semiconducting nanotubes can enhance the performance of solar cells, but the metallic ones have the opposite effect. Second, nanotubes tend to clump together, which reduces their effectiveness.

In this diagram, the M13 virus consists of a strand of DNA (the figure-8 coil on the right) attached to a bundle of proteins called peptides — the virus coat proteins (the corkscrew shapes in the center) which attach to the carbon nanotubes (gray cylinders) and hold them in place. A coating of titanium dioxide (yellow spheres) attached to dye molecules (pink spheres) surrounds the bundle. More of the viruses with their coatings are scattered across the background. 
Image: Matt Klug, Biomolecular Materials Group.

And that’s where viruses come to the rescue. Graduate students Xiangnan Dang and Hyunjung Yi — working with Angela Belcher, the W. M. Keck Professor of Energy, and several other researchers — found that a genetically engineered version of a virus called M13, which normally infects bacteria, can be used to control the arrangement of the nanotubes on a surface, keeping the tubes separate so they can’t short out the circuits, and keeping the tubes apart so they don’t clump.

The system the researchers tested used a type of solar cell known as dye-sensitized solar cells, a lightweight and inexpensive type where the active layer is composed of titanium dioxide, rather than the silicon used in conventional solar cells. But the same technique could be applied to other types as well, including quantum-dot and organic solar cells, the researchers say. In their tests, adding the virus-built structures enhanced the power conversion efficiency to 10.6 percent from 8 percent — almost a one-third improvement.

This dramatic improvement takes place even though the viruses and the nanotubes make up only 0.1 percent by weight of the finished cell. “A little biology goes a long way,” Belcher says. With further work, the researchers think they can ramp up the efficiency even further.

The viruses are used to help improve one particular step in the process of converting sunlight to electricity. In a solar cell, the first step is for the energy of the light to knock electrons loose from the solar-cell material (usually silicon); then, those electrons need to be funneled toward a collector, from which they can form a current that flows to charge a battery or power a device. After that, they return to the original material, where the cycle can start again. The new system is intended to enhance the efficiency of the second step, helping the electrons find their way: Adding the carbon nanotubes to the cell “provides a more direct path to the current collector,” Belcher says.

The viruses actually perform two different functions in this process. First, they possess short proteins called peptides that can bind tightly to the carbon nanotubes, holding them in place and keeping them separated from each other. Each virus can hold five to 10 nanotubes, each of which is held firmly in place by about 300 of the virus's peptide molecules. In addition, the virus was engineered to produce a coating of titanium dioxide (TiO2), a key ingredient for dye-sensitized solar cells, over each of the nanotubes, putting the titanium dioxide in close proximity to the wire-like nanotubes that carry the electrons.

The two functions are carried out in succession by the same virus, whose activity is “switched” from one function to the next by changing the acidity of its environment. This switching feature is an important new capability that has been demonstrated for the first time in this research, Belcher says.

In addition, the viruses make the nanotubes soluble in water, which makes it possible to incorporate the nanotubes into the solar cell using a water-based process that works at room temperature.

Prashant Kamat, a professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Notre Dame University who has done extensive work on dye-sensitized solar cells, says that while others have attempted to use carbon nanotubes to improve solar cell efficiency, “the improvements observed in earlier studies were marginal,” while the improvements by the MIT team using the virus assembly method are “impressive.”

“It is likely that the virus template assembly has enabled the researchers to establish a better contact between the TiO2 nanoparticles and carbon nanotubes. Such close contact with TiO2 nanoparticles is essential to drive away the photo-generated electrons quickly and transport it efficiently to the collecting electrode surface.”

Kamat thinks the process could well lead to a viable commercial product: “Dye-sensitized solar cells have already been commercialized in Japan, Korea and Taiwan,” he says. If the addition of carbon nanotubes via the virus process can improve their efficiency, “the industry is likely to adopt such processes.”

Belcher and her colleagues have previously used differently engineered versions of the same virus to enhance the performance of batteries and other devices, but the method used to enhance solar cell performance is quite different, she says.

Because the process would just add one simple step to a standard solar-cell manufacturing process, it should be quite easy to adapt existing production facilities and thus should be possible to implement relatively rapidly, Belcher says.

The research team also included Paula Hammond, the Bayer Professor of Chemical Engineering; Michael Strano, the Charles (1951) and Hilda Roddey Career Development Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering; and four other graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. The work was funded by the Italian company Eni, through the MIT Energy Initiative’s Solar Futures Program.

Source: MITnews

 

Their Gravity Power Modules would marry traditional heavy rig drilling technology with renewable energy storage.

 

At utility-scale, the pumped storage would begin with drilling thousands of feet underground, large enough to accommodate an 18 foot diameter storage shaft and a 6 foot diameter return pipe.

Here’s how it works, in the elegant words of Powermag:

“At the bottom of the shaft is a large concrete piston fitted to the shaft, called the “weight stack.” Also bored into the ground is a parallel but smaller-diameter “return pipe” that is connected to the main shaft at the top and bottom.

Finally, the entire volume is filled with water and tightly sealed—air is compressible and its presence reduces the system effectiveness. In essence, the position of the weight stack in the shaft determines the amount of energy stored.

During the energy storage process, off-peak electricity is used to power a pump that pushes water down the return pipe that will raise the weight stack from the bottom of the deep storage shaft.

During a peak electricity demand period, the weight stack is released, which pushes the water up the return pipe, reversing the direction of rotation of the pump-turbine and producing electricity, much as in a typical pumped storage hydroelectric plant.”

CEO Jim Fiske envisions that his Gravity Power Modules would be installed in clusters to produce the amount of energy desired. The storage capacity of a 7 acre site could amount to more than 2 GW (2,000 MW) depending on the depth and diameter of the shafts.

The Gravity Power Module has a conversion efficiency that looks likely to be in the 75% to 80% range once it is tested at full scale, at installation costs a little higher pumped hydro, around $150/kWh for a system capable of storing about 200 MWh.

Pumped hydro installation has installation costs of around $100/kwh. But it can be controversial because, like hydro-electricity itself, pumped hydro can impact a natural habitat for fish. More than half the states that have renewable energy standards do not allow hydro to qualify as renewable because of the ecological damage.

New pumped hydro projects face formidable permitting obstacles, despite the need to add more energy storage as we move to a clean power economy. The Gravity Power Module could be one of the solutions.

Source: CleanTechnica

 

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Cannabis is the best medicine in nature. Best everything. But shit, thc is important to!
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unfortunately that is a reality these days - we humans - especially in the west - only want to hear "a" truth that fits our own limited perspective rather than one that is open & is truth in many ...
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