Tag Archives: energy

A new dimension for solar energy

Untapped potential for Solar energy
The 3-D photovoltatic prototypes

Innovative 3-D photovoltatic prototypes from an MIT team can more than double the solar power generated from a given area.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Intensive research around the world has focused on improving the performance of solar photovoltaic cells and bringing down their cost. But very little attention has been paid to the best ways of arranging those cells, which are typically placed flat on a rooftop or other surface, or sometimes attached to motorized structures that keep the cells pointed toward the sun as it crosses the sky.

Now, a team of MIT researchers has come up with a very different approach: building cubes or towers that extend the solar cells upward in three-dimensional configurations. Amazingly, the results from the structures they’ve tested show power output ranging from double to more than 20 times that of fixed flat panels with the same base area.

The biggest boosts in power were seen in the situations where improvements are most needed: in locations far from the equator, in winter months and on cloudier days. The new findings, based on both computer modeling and outdoor testing of real modules, have been published in the journal Energy and Environmental Science.

“I think this concept could become an important part of the future of photovoltaics,” says the paper’s senior author, Jeffrey Grossman, the Carl Richard Soderberg Career Development Associate Professor of Power Engineering at MIT.

GeekMusic: Track 1 – Art vs. Science!

They say that only music can soothe the savage geek– or something to that effect.

As I walk along this dark highway called the Internet, I have been lucky enough to stumble across so many songs by so many artists that I never might have discovered had I just been condemned to listen to the radio. But it is rare (or at least rare-ish) to find those magical songs that wear their geek heart on their geek sleeves (sleeves with pocket protectors).

Given the opportunity, I’d like to share some of those songs with you and hopefully help expand your sphere of sonic influence (Level 4 spell!)

So how do I describe the video? It’s kind of like equal parts James Bond, They Live, and Thriller. Art vs. Science is an Aussie trio that formed in 2008. Bonus: if you’re a hipster, you can still get in near the ground floor on this one! It’s obvious that this group has a lot of fun with their music, and their music videos. This particular song, audio only, has a bit of pop and a lot of energy, but when coupled with a video of this level of cool, it takes on new life.

The Experiment is the name of their first album, released 2011, and I highly recommend it. Loads of great tunes and many with a geeky sensibility.




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