Physical Sciences

Combating corrosion in geothermal wells

Geothermal energy holds the potential to harvest vast amounts of energy from within the Earth’s crust. So far, however, exploitation of geothermal energy can be limited by corrosion – which damages the metal pipes required to carry high-temperature steam generated deep underground. In a new experiment, Andri Thorhallsson and Sigrun Karlsdottir at the University of Iceland show how the problem […]

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Research Outreach Blog

Understanding and responding to climate change: our favourite climate research from 2021

Climate change solutions must reach across education, agriculture, energy production, politics and policymaking, manufacturing, travel, transport – almost every aspect of life. The six articles highlighted below demonstrate the breadth of research being undertaken by scientists globally as they work to understand the complex impacts of climate change, design new technologies and processes for a greener future, assess the financial […]

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Physical Sciences

Inspiration from surfactants gives Li-S cells longer life

The renewable-fuelled future is reliant on improvements in battery energy density to smooth the grid and power electric vehicles for longer journeys. Lithium-ion cells – the industry standard – are almost at their capacity. Lithium-sulfur cells could be the answer, current technology degrades quickly due to an effect called redox shuttling. Dr Gao Liu, a staff scientist and his team […]

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Earth & Environment

Renewable energy concepts for addressing climate change

Climate change is real, is here, and it will not go away unless we do something. Based on current scientific advancements on energy systems, energy storage, renewable energy options, and understanding of the Earth’s feedback mechanism, there is hope that global efforts could help avoid an environmental catastrophe. However, the action plan needs to be global, based on collective approaches, […]

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Informatics & Technology

Developing the Geneva Solar Cadaster: A decision support tool for sustainable energy management in urban areas

Gilles Desthieux, Associate Professor at the Geneva Institute of Landscape, Engineering and Architecture and a Consultant in Urban Energy Planning with Amstein+Walthert Geneva, leads a team of researchers who have developed the Geneva Solar Cadaster, a tool for modelling solar radiation and energy production from building rooftops and facades. Recent urban studies have shown that our cities play a significant role in […]

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Physical Sciences

Technological leapfrogging the global energy crisis: How can changing the role of science in developing countries help with an oncoming climate catastrophe?

In 1975, the Brazilian government launched the National Alcohol Program (NAP) with the sole aim of relieving the country’s crushing dependence on fossil fuels with a move to cleaner ethyl-alcohol based fuels – and, thanks to researchers like Professor José Goldemberg, of the University of São Paulo, the program was an overwhelming success. Combining the country’s own natural resources with technological leapfrogging – […]

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