The installing and testing of thermoelectric waste heat recovering generators in BMW Group and Ford vehicles by Amerigon Incorporated, is a critical step forward in the development of a cost-effective energy waste heat system and power generation into vehicle production.
There has been made much progress in this fifth phase of the funded program US Department Engergy (DOE), studying the use of thermoelectric systems to converte waste heat from automobile engine exhaust into electrical power. BSST, a subsidiary of Amerigon, is being led this program. The DOE program intends to improve automobile fuel economy and supports the DOE’s objectives of reducing dependency of foreign energy imports and lowering greenhouses gas emissions while supporting the increased electrification of vehicle powertrains. The DOE will contribute approximately $ 1,1 million in funding and BSST wil offer an additional $ 370.000 for this fifth phase of the project, which has a targeted completition date of March 31, 2010.
BSST was founded in 2000 to develope advances in themoelectric systems. It’ s mission is to provide highly efficient, effective, and practical solid -state temperature control and power generation solutions to industry. Through sustained research and development the team of BSST will going on with the technology by improving the science of thermoelectric technology.
BSST is working very hard to advance the technology of thermoelectric devices particularly as it applies to heating and cooling’ said Amerigon President and Chief Executieve Officier Daniel R. Cooker. ‘ Their efforts are agreeing fully with government and private industry, aimed at pushing the variety of uses for thermoelectric technology beyond our current automotive seating application. In the next few months we hope to report you more about the progress with this program and others.’
First Solar, a US solar panel firm, plans to build a two-gigawatt solar farm in China. The farm will be 20 times bigger than the solar energy farm, China is now building in Portugal. When the farm is working in five years, it will produce one thousand megawatts, one gigawatt of energy. This is about 10 times more than the country’s entire installed solar capacity at the moment. In 2019 the plant in Inner Mongolia, will be generating two gigawatts.
So far the Chinese government has been pretty cautious about solar energy. Officials were not very excited about the idea to build much solar capacity until they knew for sure wich technology they wanted to support. They preferred to cooperate with First Solar, one of American most technologically advanced companies. It is remarkable that they did not choose a Chinese firm.
The thin film panels, now technically improved by First Solar, will not be entirely manufactured in China. The firm is considering to build a factory in Ordos. Inner Mongolia. If the plan will be executed, it is expected that if Chines engineers, after learning and improving the technology, start making their own thin film panels to compete with First Solar.
The Chines industry plans to generate 20 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020. Yet the industry will still mostly rely on coal in the near future. Currently China is the leader, when it comes to pollution and greenhouses gases. No other county emits so much CO2.
Pacific Northwest National Lab has been making progress in using a new method for capturing more heat from the low-temperature of
geothermal resources. Which it is hoped could result in generating pollution-free electrical energy. A new liquid is used called biphasic fluid, which has the benefit of rapid expansion and contraction capabillities developed by PNNL’s conversion system. The thermal-cycling of the biphasic fluid, when exposed to heat and brought to the surface from water circulating in moderately hot, underground rock, will power a turbine generating electricity.
Scientists added metal-organic heat carriers (MOHC’s) to aid efficiency, which boost the power generation capacity to near that of a convential steam cycle.
‘Our intention is to enable generation from low-temperature geothermal resources to get a clean energy source without any greenhouse gas emissions which is also a steady and dependable source of power’ said Pete McGrail, PNNL Laboratory. ‘ We accidentily discovered this by research on nanometerials used to capture dioxide from burning fossils fuel’ .
PNNL plan to have a functioning bench-top prototype generating electricity by the end of the year.