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Batteries

October 11, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

[caption id="attachment_443" align="alignright" width="300"] Lithium ion battery pack[/caption] Making a better, higher capacity battery has been a quest that has consumed scientists and engineers for decades. But progress has been painfully slow because a battery is essentially a liquid chemical device that turns chemical energy into electricity at rates that...
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End of the beginning in sustainability

October 04, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Earlier this week both Ford and General Motors announced big plans to revamp their entire fleets by the mid 2020’s using electric vehicles. According to the New York Times, GM’s CEO Mary Barra, “…announced plans for 20 new all-electric models by 2023, including two within the next 18 months.” And...
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Scott Pruitt can’t hurt you

October 04, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

It's garbage time for coal. Garbage time in pro basketball is that point in a game when the outcome is decided despite the fact that there’s still time on the clock. Usually the score is out of reach for the losing team except for a super human effort and probably...
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Carbon Sinks 2.0

September 29, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

In Carbon Sinks 1.0 we explored the concept of capturing and storing or at least rendering unharmful to the climate, atmospheric CO2. Natural carbon sinks involve green plants that capture CO2 and turn it into various materials based on carbohydrates that can either become food sources or plant matter like...
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Carbon Sinks 1.0

September 29, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

[caption id="attachment_430" align="alignright" width="300"] From the Sierra Club[/caption] When they discuss removing carbon from the atmosphere climate scientists and others refer to carbon sinks which are as varied as they are numerous and some work better than others. In this first of several posts on carbon sinks we will look...
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Change and the New Energy Paradigm

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

One of the hardest parts of change is, well, change. That’s not circular reasoning either, changing something about your life takes a bit if courage because you might be encountering something you haven’t before. Change also requires an amount of trust that things have been thought through and we’ll all...
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Hydrothermal Heat Mining

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

There are two general ways to mine heat—hydrothermal heat mining and Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS). For simplicity let’s look at hydrothermal heat mining here and EGS in a separate post. Hydrothermal heat mining’s modern uses for electricity generation from go back at least 100 years on every continent. Also, people...
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How Much Fossil Fuel is Left?

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Nothing on Earth is available in an infinite supply; not oxygen, not gold, not fossil fuels. Nothing, and that’s especially true of the fossil fuels that we use for energy. Interestingly those fuels are also a great source of carbon compounds that serve as the starting materials for all sorts...
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Heat mining and power production

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

One power-generating solution that is both non-intermittent and nonpolluting involves mining (or extracting) heat from the Earth’s crust to generate electricity. According to “The Future of Geothermal Energy—Impact of Enhanced Geothermal Systems on the United States in the 21st Century,” a 2006 study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)...
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Engineered Geothermal Systems

September 26, 2017 by Denis Pombriant

Conventional hydrothermal-heat mining relies on three major characteristics. Hydrothermal wells must be hot and their high heat gradients must be within the reach of conventional drilling technology; their rock formations must be porous enough to enable good flow of liquid water through the rock to absorb heat; and they must...
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