Windows allow brilliant natural light to stream into homes and buildings. Along with light comes heat that, in warm weather, we often counter with energy-consuming air conditioning. Now scientists are developing a new kind of 'smart window' that can block out heat when the outside temperatures rise.
Cutting the environmental costs of aero engine parts manufacturing, increasing freedom in their design and reducing fuel consumption and contaminating gas emissions are some of the benefits resulting from applying modern additive manufacturing techniques to the aircraft industry.
The transport sector is still generating excessive greenhouse gas emissions and harmful levels of air pollution and noise, according to the latest edition of the European Environment Agency's annual report on environment and transport.
Large-scale storage of low-pressure, gaseous hydrogen in salt caverns and other underground sites for transportation fuel and grid-scale energy applications offers several advantages over above-ground storage, says a recent study.
Natural gas power plants produce substantial amounts of gases that lead to global warming. Replacing old coal-fired power plants with new natural gas plants could cause climate damage to increase over the next decades, unless their methane leakage rates are very low and the new power plants are very efficient.
Plastic is well-known for sticking around in the environment for years without breaking down, contributing significantly to litter and landfills. But scientists have now discovered that bacteria from the guts of a worm known to munch on food packaging can degrade polyethylene, the most common plastic.
Polylactic acid is a degradable plastic used mostly for packaging. To meet the rising demand, researchers have developed an eco-friendly process to make large amounts of lactic acid from glycerol, a waste by-product in the production of biodiesel.