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    • Baring-Gould helps keep lights on down South September 7, 2010
      While most of us are squeezing the last bit of sunshine out of summer, clean energy systems certified by DOE''s National Renewable Energy Laboratory are supplying ice-bound research bases with critical power during the frigid darkness of the Antarctic winter. […]
    • Simulations pick apart graphene mystery September 7, 2010
      Nanoscale simulations and theoretical research performed at DOE's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are bringing scientists closer to realizing graphene's potential in electronic applications. […]
    • NETL leads science-based risk assessment for carbon sequestration September 7, 2010
      The effectiveness of CO2 sequestration storage of CO2 depends greatly on storage permanence. […]
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    • Afla-Guard Also Protects Corn Crops
      Read the magazine story to find out more. ARS researchers have found that a biological control called Afla-Guard® that they developed to stop the fungi which causes aflatoxin on peanuts can also be used to protect corn. Photo courtesy of Microsoft Clipart. New farming wrinkle may help peanut growers   Technology improves peanut grading, moisture detection […]
    • Corn Lines Resist Fungal Toxins
      Read the magazine story to find out more. ARS geneticist Paul Williams is part of a multidisciplinary team of researchers and university cooperators that is developing new corn lines that are genetically resistant to aflatoxin-producing fungi. Click the image for more information about it. Seeds of aflatoxin-resistant corn lines available   Helpful yeast ba […]
    • Helping Corn-based Plastics Take More Heat
      Read the magazine story to find out more. Developing a more heat-tolerant biodegradable plastic is the goal of ARS research chemist William J. Orts (left) and his collaborators, Allison Flynn and Lennard Torres from Lapol, LLC, Santa Barbara, Calif. Click the image for more information about it. Inventors offer ecofriendly substitutes for polystyrene   Scie […]
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    • FDA cautions consumers about Estrella Family Creamery cheeses
      The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers to discard cheeses from Estrella Family Creamery of Montesano, Wash., because they may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Environmental samples and one product sample collected by the FDA during an August 2010 inspection at the facility have tested positive for L. mono. […]
    • FDA seeks court order against Michigan dairy
      The U.S. Department of Justice, on behalf of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, has filed a complaint for permanent injunction against Scenic View Dairy of Hamilton, Mich., its president, and three of its managers alleging that they sold dairy cows for human consumption that contained illegal drug residues in edible tissues. […]
    • FDA launches new organizational performance management system
      The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today launched an innovative performance management system designed to advance the President’s commitment to transparency, public participation, and collaboration in the work of government. […]
    • FDA Warns Consumers to Avoid TimeOut Capsules
      The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers not to take TimeOut Capsules because it contains an active drug ingredient that can dangerously lower blood pressure. The product is marketed as a dietary supplement for sexual enhancement. […]
    • FDA releases guidance on federal menu labeling requirements
      The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today released two documents that outline steps to help chain restaurants comply with new federal nutrition labeling requirements. […]

Fuels From Sunlight

It would seem that the sun is one of the only places to take advantage of nuclear fusion.

The Department Of Energy the creation of the Fuels from Sunlight Energy Innovation Hub to develop revolutionary methods of generating fuels directly from sunlight. The Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP), led by the California Institute of Technology in partnership with the DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, will operate the initiative. JCAP will bring together leading researchers in an effort to simulate natural photosynthesis for practical energy production. The goal is to build an integrated solar energy-to-chemical fuel conversion system before moving the system from the discovery phase to a commercial scale. To fulfill its mission, the hub will receive up to $22 million in Fiscal Year 2010, then an estimated $25 million per year for the next four fiscal years.

Research will be directed at finding the functional components needed to assemble a complete artificial photosynthetic system, including light absorbers, catalysts, molecular linkers, and separation membranes. The hub will then integrate those components into an operational solar fuel system and will develop scale-up strategies to move the product from the laboratory to commercial viability. The ultimate objective is to move from fundamental to applied research and technology development, setting the stage for a direct solar fuels industry. If successful, the concept—to combine sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide to make a clean fuel—would be an energy sector game changer. DOE’s Office of Science will oversee the project. The Fuels from Sunlight Energy Innovation Hub is the second of three such interdisciplinary hubs that will receive funding in FY 2010. In May, DOE announced that a team led by DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory will establish a hub on modeling and simulation for nuclear reactors. The selection for the remaining hub will be announced in the coming months.

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