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Renewables ideas make world of difference

March 16, 2016

Renewables ideas make world of difference

March 16, 2016, by Tim Radford

LONDON, 16 March, 2016 – Here is a snapshot of the future for the energy-aware. It may one day be possible to drive an electric car with a battery partly made with carbon dioxide from the air.

It may also be possible to recharge the same car in a garage covered with lightweight, flexible sheets of organic solar cells spread like wallpaper. And if that’s not enough, engineers might use energy from a bacterial fuel cell that generates current from the water flushed down their toilets.

None of these things is possible right now. All, any or none of them may mature to a commercial product. But each is an indicator of ingenuity, imagination and resource repeatedly demonstrated in the world’s laboratories to confront the coming crisis of energy and climate change.

Researchers in the US don’t just boast that their new car batteries are carbon-neutral: they are carbon negative. They report in ACS Science journal that they have shown that the graphite electrodes used in lithium-ion batteries in electric automobiles can be replaced with carbon recovered from the atmosphere.

Read more at Climate News Network.

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