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From the Amazon rainforest to human body cells: quantifying stability

The Amazon rainforest, energy grids, and cells in the human body share a troublesome property: they possess multiple stable states. When the world's largest tropical forest suddenly starts retreating in a warming climate, energy supply blacks out, or cells turn carcinogenic, complex-systems science understands this as a transition between two such states.

Jan 7th, 2013

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Sacrifice and luck help Japan survive without nuclear power

In the wake of the Fukushima disaster, nuclear-dependent Japan began shutting down its other reactors. Toshiya Okamura, a Tokyo Gas executive and visiting scholar at Stanford University, explains how the country survived the summer, and expresses deep concerns about this winter and his country's energy future.

Jan 7th, 2013

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DOE awards $10M to develop advanced biofuels

These projects use innovative synthetic biological and chemical techniques to convert biomass into processable sugars that can be transformed into bioproducts and drop-in biofuels for cars, trucks, and planes.

Jan 5th, 2013

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Photosynthesis: The last link in the chain

For almost 30 years, researchers have sought to identify a particular enzyme that is involved in regulating electron transport during photosynthesis. A team of scientists has now found the missing link, which turns out to be an old acquaintance.

Jan 5th, 2013

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New York State awards $15 million to three new clean-energy 'idea incubators'

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has awarded a total of $15 million to Columbia University, the Polytechnic Institute of New York University and High Tech Rochester to create three Proof-of-Concept Centers dedicated to helping inventors and scientists turn their high-tech, clean-energy ideas into successful businesses.

Jan 4th, 2013

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New study documents the natural relationship between CO2 concentrations and sea level

By comparing reconstructions of atmospheric CO2 concentrations and sea level over the past 40 million years, researchers based at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton have found that greenhouse gas concentrations similar to the present (almost 400 parts per million) were systematically associated with sea levels at least nine metres above current levels.

Jan 2nd, 2013

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ACTIVEWINDFARMS to optimise atmospheric energy extraction

ACTIVEWINDFARMS ('Active wind farms: optimization and control of atmospheric energy extraction in gigawatt wind farms') is investigating ways to introduce optimal techniques for improved control of the interaction between large wind farms and the atmospheric boundary layer.

Dec 28th, 2012

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