UConn reactor uses more efficient process to make biodiesel fuel

Source: Physorg.com

Deep inside the University of Connecticut’s chemical engineering building in Storrs, Professor Richard Parnas and a team of students quietly monitor a murky brown emulsion bubbling inside an enormous 6-inch diameter glass tube like doctors carefully observing a patient undergoing surgery.

Parnas’ patented biodiesel reactor is unique in both its simplicity and efficiency. In conventional biodiesel production, vegetable oil is converted into biodiesel fuel and glycerol, a byproduct of the conversion process. Then, the glycerol must be mechanically separated from the diesel fuel, as part of a two-step process. Parnas’ reactor is different in that it uses gravity, heat, and natural chemical reactions to make the biodiesel and separate the glycerol in one step.

Solar Power Comes to Saudi Arabia in a Big Way as Peak Oil Looms
Source: Fast Company

Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest exporter of oil. But as experts and WikiLeaks previously detailed—the country’s oil supply may be fast dwindling and that has made renewable energy options, such as solar, that much more appealing. Just this week the country announced that construction of its largest solar power plant will be completed by September—and this just days after WikiLeaks reports about exaggerated oil quantities from the country hit the news.
"The solar market in the Gulf region is still in its infancy," said Klaus Friedl, general manager of Phoenix Solar, the firm contracted to build the new solar plant. “There is, however, a huge potential for solar power plants in Saudi Arabia.”
The concern over oil shortages is no longer limited to supplying foreign countries—the rate of domestic consumption in Saudi Arabia is set to triple in the next 20 years to 120 gigawatts, which means that Saudis could foreseeably consume all of their oil just for themselves. ”It’s really a preservation decision using solar for domestic consumption and keeping your oil for more lucrative export markets,” said Vahid Fotuhi, Middle East director of BP Solar. “Right now, out of the 8 million barrels per day they produce, over 3 million barrels per day are consumed domestically, mainly for power generation. That figure is growing 8 percent per annum,” said Fotuhi.

Solar Power Comes to Saudi Arabia in a Big Way as Peak Oil Looms

Source: Fast Company

Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest exporter of oil. But as experts and WikiLeaks previously detailed—the country’s oil supply may be fast dwindling and that has made renewable energy options, such as solar, that much more appealing. Just this week the country announced that construction of its largest solar power plant will be completed by September—and this just days after WikiLeaks reports about exaggerated oil quantities from the country hit the news.

"The solar market in the Gulf region is still in its infancy," said Klaus Friedl, general manager of Phoenix Solar, the firm contracted to build the new solar plant. “There is, however, a huge potential for solar power plants in Saudi Arabia.”

The concern over oil shortages is no longer limited to supplying foreign countries—the rate of domestic consumption in Saudi Arabia is set to triple in the next 20 years to 120 gigawatts, which means that Saudis could foreseeably consume all of their oil just for themselves. ”It’s really a preservation decision using solar for domestic consumption and keeping your oil for more lucrative export markets,” said Vahid Fotuhi, Middle East director of BP Solar. “Right now, out of the 8 million barrels per day they produce, over 3 million barrels per day are consumed domestically, mainly for power generation. That figure is growing 8 percent per annum,” said Fotuhi.

Get Smarter Planet Mobile on your Blackberry, Nokia, Palm, Windows Mobile and 2,100 other types of smartphones on GetJar, the world’s second biggest app store, with access in more than 200 countries.

GetJar gives you the ability to select your phone and country and will then give you the option to download the right app for your device.

You can even get the Smarter Planet and The Social Business Android apps from GetJar, in addition to the Android Market.


11th Hour

The 11th Hour is a 2007 feature film documentary, created, produced and narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, on the state of the natural environment. It was directed by Leila Conners Petersen and Nadia Conners and financed by Adam Lewis and Pierre André Senizergues, and distributed by Warner Independent Pictures. Its world premiere was at the 2007 60th Annual Cannes Film Festival (May 16–27, 2007) and it was released on August 17, 2007, in the year in which the Fourth Assessment Report of the United Nations global warming panel IPCC was published and about a year after Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, another film documentary about global warming.

Solazyme | Technology
Solazyme’s renewable oil production technology allows us to do in a matter of days what it took nature millions of years to do. Our unique, indirect photosynthesis bioproduction process uses microalgae to convert biomass directly into oil and other biomaterials, a process that can be performed in standard commercial fermentation facilities cleanly, quickly, and at low cost and large scale. Our renewable oil and bioproducts technology has manufactured thousands of gallons of oil and hundreds of tons of biomaterials that are tailored not only for biofuel production, but also as replacements for fossil petroleum and plant oils and compounds in a diverse range of products from oleochemicals to cosmetics and foods 

Solazyme | Technology

Solazyme’s renewable oil production technology allows us to do in a matter of days what it took nature millions of years to do. Our unique, indirect photosynthesis bioproduction process uses microalgae to convert biomass directly into oil and other biomaterials, a process that can be performed in standard commercial fermentation facilities cleanly, quickly, and at low cost and large scale. Our renewable oil and bioproducts technology has manufactured thousands of gallons of oil and hundreds of tons of biomaterials that are tailored not only for biofuel production, but also as replacements for fossil petroleum and plant oils and compounds in a diverse range of products from oleochemicals to cosmetics and foods 

wearetheearth:

crookedindifference:

Our Lopsided Energy Subsidies, Visualized

Here’s a look at the various ways in which we subsidize energy (the chart is based on this paper from the Environmental Law Institute). As you can see, the tax breaks for traditional fossil fuels, in the bottom left quadrant, are just massive. The result? The cost of coal and oil are artificially cheap, meaning we use them more, and the companies that extract and sell them reap absurd profits. Is there any neoliberal economic defense for this or is it simply an unfair product of industry lobbying?

My answer? Lobbying.

Agreed.

wearetheearth:

crookedindifference:

Our Lopsided Energy Subsidies, Visualized

Here’s a look at the various ways in which we subsidize energy (the chart is based on this paper from the Environmental Law Institute). As you can see, the tax breaks for traditional fossil fuels, in the bottom left quadrant, are just massive. The result? The cost of coal and oil are artificially cheap, meaning we use them more, and the companies that extract and sell them reap absurd profits. Is there any neoliberal economic defense for this or is it simply an unfair product of industry lobbying?

My answer? Lobbying.

Agreed.

Mapping  the Oil Spill in Real Time
In the wake of the BP oil disaster, real-time mapping technologies have been recruited to improve communication and promote collaboration between people in local communities, as well as federal, state and local responders. Last week NOAA released GeoPlatform.gov to provide near-real-time mapping data to those connected to the crisis. The site lets you track everything from daily spill positions to the locations of ships responding to the crisis. State and non-governmental organizations are also collecting and mapping real-time information. In some instances the efforts include citizen-generated data from iPhone apps and photos mapped on sites like Flickr.

Mapping the Oil Spill in Real Time

In the wake of the BP oil disaster, real-time mapping technologies have been recruited to improve communication and promote collaboration between people in local communities, as well as federal, state and local responders. Last week NOAA released GeoPlatform.gov to provide near-real-time mapping data to those connected to the crisis. The site lets you track everything from daily spill positions to the locations of ships responding to the crisis. State and non-governmental organizations are also collecting and mapping real-time information. In some instances the efforts include citizen-generated data from iPhone apps and photos mapped on sites like Flickr.

Kuwaiti  Scientists Say Peak Oil Will Arrive in 2014 : Gas 2.0
New research out of Kuwait, using a new method of calculating the crude oil production potential of 47 of the world’s largest oil producing countries, has found that peak oil — the period in time when oil production reaches a maximum and then begins to decline — will come much sooner than expected… 2014 to be exact.

Kuwaiti Scientists Say Peak Oil Will Arrive in 2014 : Gas 2.0

New research out of Kuwait, using a new method of calculating the crude oil production potential of 47 of the world’s largest oil producing countries, has found that peak oil — the period in time when oil production reaches a maximum and then begins to decline — will come much sooner than expected… 2014 to be exact.

A  World Transformed: What Are the Top 30 Innovations of the Last 30  Years? - Knowledge@Wharton
The list is as follows, in order of importance:

 1. Internet, broadband, WWW (browser and html)
2. PC/laptop computers 
3. Mobile phones 
4. E-mail 
5. DNA testing and sequencing/Human genome mapping 
6. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) 
7. Microprocessors 
8. Fiber optics 
9. Office software (spreadsheets, word processors) 
10. Non-invasive laser/robotic surgery (laparoscopy) 
11. Open source software and services (e.g., Linux, Wikipedia) 
12. Light emitting diodes 
13. Liquid crystal display (LCD) 
14. GPS systems 
15. Online shopping/ecommerce/auctions (e.g., eBay) 
16. Media file compression (jpeg, mpeg, mp3) 
17. Microfinance 
18. Photovoltaic Solar Energy 
19. Large scale wind turbines 
20. Social networking via the Internet 
21. Graphic user interface (GUI) 
22. Digital photography/videography 
23. RFID and applications (e.g., EZ Pass) 
24. Genetically modified plants 
25. Bio fuels 
26. Bar codes and scanners 
27. ATMs 
28. Stents 
29. SRAM flash memory 
30. Anti retroviral treatment for AIDS
Before the winners could be selected from the vast number of entries, the Wharton judges first had to define what innovation means in an age dominated by digital technology, medical advancements and mobile communications. The judges included Ian MacMillan, director of the Sol C. Snider Entrepreneurial Research Center; Thomas Colligan, vice dean, Wharton Executive Education; Kevin Werbach, professor of legal studies and business ethics; Karl Ulrich, chair, operations and information management department; Franklin Allen, co-director of the Wharton Financial Institutions Center; George Day, co-director of the Mack Center for Technological Innovation; Lori Rosenkopf, professor of management; and Mukul Pandya, editor-in-chief of Knowledge@Wharton.

A World Transformed: What Are the Top 30 Innovations of the Last 30 Years? - Knowledge@Wharton

The list is as follows, in order of importance:

  • 1. Internet, broadband, WWW (browser and html)
  • 2. PC/laptop computers
  • 3. Mobile phones
  • 4. E-mail
  • 5. DNA testing and sequencing/Human genome mapping
  • 6. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
  • 7. Microprocessors
  • 8. Fiber optics
  • 9. Office software (spreadsheets, word processors)
  • 10. Non-invasive laser/robotic surgery (laparoscopy)
  • 11. Open source software and services (e.g., Linux, Wikipedia)
  • 12. Light emitting diodes
  • 13. Liquid crystal display (LCD)
  • 14. GPS systems
  • 15. Online shopping/ecommerce/auctions (e.g., eBay)
  • 16. Media file compression (jpeg, mpeg, mp3)
  • 17. Microfinance
  • 18. Photovoltaic Solar Energy
  • 19. Large scale wind turbines
  • 20. Social networking via the Internet
  • 21. Graphic user interface (GUI)
  • 22. Digital photography/videography
  • 23. RFID and applications (e.g., EZ Pass)
  • 24. Genetically modified plants
  • 25. Bio fuels
  • 26. Bar codes and scanners
  • 27. ATMs
  • 28. Stents
  • 29. SRAM flash memory
  • 30. Anti retroviral treatment for AIDS

Before the winners could be selected from the vast number of entries, the Wharton judges first had to define what innovation means in an age dominated by digital technology, medical advancements and mobile communications. The judges included Ian MacMillan, director of the Sol C. Snider Entrepreneurial Research Center; Thomas Colligan, vice dean, Wharton Executive Education; Kevin Werbach, professor of legal studies and business ethics; Karl Ulrich, chair, operations and information management department; Franklin Allen, co-director of the Wharton Financial Institutions Center; George Day, co-director of the Mack Center for Technological Innovation; Lori Rosenkopf, professor of management; and Mukul Pandya, editor-in-chief of Knowledge@Wharton.