Energy and Climate

Materials Science

Diamond Plates Create Nanostructures through Pressure, Not Chemistry

In a recent Nature Com­munications paper, Sandia researcher Hongyou Fan (at Sandia’s Advanced Materials Laboratory) and colleagues have achieved a start toward using mechanical force to process nanoparticles more subtly than the most advanced chemistry. Their newly patented method uses simple pressure—a kind of high-tech embossing—to produce finer and cleaner results in forming silver nanostructures […]

More Efficient Fuel Cells under Development by Engineers

Solar power and other sources of renewable energy can help combat global warming but they have a draw­back: they don’t produce energy as predictably as generating plants powered by oil, coal, or natural gas. Solar panels only produce electricity when the sun is shining, and wind turbines are only productive when the wind is brisk. […]

High-Efficiency Solar Thermochemical Reactor for Hydrogen Production

On June 16th, the Department of Energy Fuel Cell Technology Office (FCTO) announced $20 million for 10 R&D projects to advance technologies that can economically produce and deliver hydrogen to power fuel cells from diverse, domestic, and renewable resources thereby enabling substantial reductions in energy use and carbon emissions. Advancing these technologies is critical to […]

Novel Nanoparticle Production Method Could Lead to Better Lights, Lenses, Solar Cells

Titanium-dioxide (TiO2) nanoparticles show great promise as fillers to tune the refractive index of anti-reflective coatings on signs and optical encapsulants (protective coverings or coatings) for light-emitting di­odes (LEDs), solar cells and other optical devices. Industry has shunned TiO2 nanoparticles because they have been difficult and expensive to make, and current methods produce particles that are too […]

Biofouling Studies on Sandia’s Marine Hydrokinetic Coatings Initiated at PNNL’s Sequim Bay

Sandia’s Materials & Manufacturing Reliability Program has begun testing their novel marine hydrokinetic (MHK) coatings at the Sequim Bay facility, which is a part of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Tests will reveal anti-biofouling efficacy of coatings developed for MHK technology and of commercial coatings. Over 150 coupons (1×1, 3×3, and 8×8 inches) will be […]

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