Solar Jet Fuel from Sunlight, Water and CO2
Researchers from the EU-funded SOLAR-JET project have succeeded in making solar jet fuel from practically nothing but sunlight, water and carbon dioxide. The innovative process relies on the utilization of a redox cycle with metal-oxide- based materials at high temperatures, which uses concentrated sunlight to convert CO2 and water to a synthesis gas. The synthesis gas is essentially a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen, which is then converted into kerosene via already available commercial Fischer-Tropsch technology.
SolarCity Enters Nevada
SolarCity, the biggest solar power provider in the country, has just entered the state of Nevada. The company now has 400 employees and plans to hire more soon. SolarCity expects to begin installing at the end of October and will accommodate patrons on a first-come, first-served basis. Elsewhere, homeowners can get solar panel systems installed on their roofs for free from SolarCity, and then just lease the panels from SolarCity for a lower estimate rate than they would pay the utility for electricity. Homeowners in Nevada will have a different set-up as SolarCity will be requiring around $30 a month for the solar system installations.
Sacramento to Build a Giant Water Battery
The City of Sacramento, California is looking to forge ahead in constructing a 400 MW battery made from water. Also knows as pumped hydroelectric facilities, water batteries use established technology in conjunction with old fashioned gravity. In a pumped hydropower system, water is shunted from a lower-lying reservoir to a higher reservoir at night, during off-peak hours when electricity rates are lower, thereby saving money. Called the Iowa Hill project, the hydropower power system will use Sacramento’s existing slab Creek reservoir in the American river for the lower reservoir. The upper reservoir will be constructed to have a capacity of 6,400 acre-feet.
DOE Picks Winners for Offshore Wind Development
The United States Department of Energy has announced the three plot projects that will continue to receive funding to design, develop and deploy their offshore wind innovations. Each project will receive up to another $47 million over the next four years with the goal of being commercially operational by 2017. The three winning projects are: Fishermen’s Atlantic City Windfarm in New Jersey, WindFloat Pacific of Oregon, and Virginia Offshore Wind Technology Advances Project.