Researchers have now pioneered a process that could enable the efficient recycling of two rare-earth metals, neodymium and dysprosium. These elements comprise the small, powerful magnets that are found in many high-tech devices. In contrast to the massive and energy-intensive industrial process currently used to separate rare earths, the method works nearly instantaneously at room temperature and uses standard laboratory equipment.
Switchgrass is an excellent candidate for biofuel production. However, growing and processing switchgrass is barely profitable. It lacks qualities, such as high biomass yield, needed to maximize biofuel production. To breed switchgrass that has the optimal combination of traits, the researchers tried evaluating plants using the Smith-Hazel Selection Index.
Researchers and industry are cooperating within the SOLAM (solar melting of aluminium in a directly radiated rotary kiln) project to develop a method by which aluminium foundries could use solar energy to melt this metal. The method would allow the companies to reduce their electricity consumption to a great extent and substantially lower their carbon dioxide emissions.
In a study that could improve the safety of next-generation batteries, researchers discovered that adding two chemicals to the electrolyte of a lithium metal battery prevents the formation of dendrites ?-'fingers' of lithium that pierce the barrier between the battery's halves, causing it to short out, overheat and sometimes burst into flame.
Researchers have discovered the structure and transport properties of the 'intermediate state' in lithium-ion batteries - key to understanding the mechanisms of charge and discharge in rechargeable batteries. These findings may help accelerate battery reaction speed and significantly shorten battery charging time.
The SAMT project of the European Union will work together with leading industrial actors from the cement, oil, metal, water, waste and chemical industries and review the latest scientific developments within the field of sustainability assessment.
Finding an efficient solar water splitting method to mine electron-rich hydrogen for clean power has been thwarted by the poor performance of hematite. But by 're-growing' the mineral's surface, a smoother version of hematite doubled electrical yield, opening a new door to energy-harvesting artificial photosynthesis, according to a new report.
Researchers have developed a catalytic process for converting sugarcane biomass into a new class of aviation fuel and lubricant base oils that could help biorefineries achieve net life-cycle greenhouse gas savings of up to 80 percent.
How light of different colours is absorbed by carbon dioxide can now be accurately predicted using new calculations. This will help climate scientists studying Earth's greenhouse gas emissions to better interpret data collected from satellites and ground stations measuring CO2.