Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > MSU researchers lead the way in alternative energy research

MSU College of Engineering Dean Satish Udpa
MSU College of Engineering Dean Satish Udpa

Abstract:
Michigan State University's College of Engineering is working to improve the world's alternative energy future thanks to three grants totaling $141.5 million.

MSU researchers lead the way in alternative energy research

East Lansing, MI | Posted on September 21st, 2009

"We think that no single solution is going to be able to address the energy problem we're confronting today," said Satish Udpa, dean of the College of Engineering. "So we feel we need to be working in several areas simultaneously. We have strong programs in thermoelectrics, biofuels and battery storage technology."

MSU is the lead institution in a new $12.5 million U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored Energy Frontier Research Center focusing on the study of thermoelectric energy conversion. Led by Donald Morelli, professor of chemical engineering and materials science, the team is developing methods to convert heat to electricity. Applications range from waste heat recovery from automobiles to solar thermal energy conversion.

"When you burn a gallon of gas in an internal combustion engine, about two-thirds of the energy produced in that process is lost as heat either through the exhaust system or through the radiator," Morelli said. "But if we can capture some of that energy and turn it into something useful, we can make automobiles more efficient.

"Our best new energy source is available to us now; we just have to figure out how to use it."

Bruce Dale, professor of chemical engineering and materials science and associate director of MSU's Office of Biobased Technologies, is a member of the $125 million, five-year U.S. Department of Energy-funded Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center. Dale invented a unique process to help convert plant materials into fuels. He is now focused on eliminating the "food vs. fuel" dilemma of biofuels by coproducing animal feeds and biofuels.

"We have got to solve our fuel problem," Dale said. "This will be a defining challenge for us for the next few decades. We have to find a way to provide energy for the world that won't pollute and is sustainable. But it's not going to happen overnight."

College of Engineering researchers have secured about $4 million in funding from multiple federal, state and commercial organizations to develop the next generation of advanced battery and capacitor technology. Under the leadership of Jeff Sakamoto and Lawrence T. Drzal, professors of chemical engineering and materials science, new nanomaterials, nanomaterial architectures, processing techniques and electrode designs are being developed to produce high-energy batteries and high-power super capacitors for the personal, transportation and infrastructure sectors for both U.S. Department of Defense and civilian applications.

"We're trying to improve the energy and power density of lithium-ion batteries so they can be used in electric vehicles," Sakamoto said.

Drzal said that a lot of researchers are working on alternative ways to generate energy.

"Wind and solar are very environmentally benign, but they aren't always available when you want them," Drzal said. "The key is to have the ability to store energy made at various times and then be able to use it when you want it.

"So to make the transition from petroleum-based energy to alternative energies realistic, we're going to have to come up with better alternative energy storage devices and technologies. That's what we're working on at MSU."

To watch video conversations with College of Engineering researchers, please visit www.egr.msu.edu/research/energy/.

####

About Michigan State University
Michigan State University has been advancing knowledge and transforming lives through innovative teaching, research and outreach for more than 150 years. MSU is known internationally as a major public university with global reach and extraordinary impact. Its 17 degree-granting colleges attract scholars worldwide who are interested in combining education with practical problem solving.

Contacts:
Russ White, University Relations, Office: (517) 432-0923,

Copyright © Michigan State University

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Announcements

Scientists join forces to reveal the mass and shape of single molecules April 27th, 2015

The 16th Trends in Nanotechnology International Conference (TNT 2015) unveils 25 Keynote Speakers: Call for abstracts open April 27th, 2015

Graphenea celebrates fifth anniversary April 27th, 2015

Sensor Designed in Iran Able to Remove Formaldehyde Gas from Environment April 27th, 2015

Military

Electron spin brings order to high entropy alloys April 23rd, 2015

Engineer improves rechargeable batteries with MoS2 nano 'sandwich' April 18th, 2015

Cobalt film a clean-fuel find: Rice University discovery is efficient, robust at drawing hydrogen and oxygen from water April 15th, 2015

MIT sensor detects spoiled meat: Tiny device could be incorporated into 'smart packaging' to improve food safety April 15th, 2015

Energy

Pseudoparticles travel through photoactive material: KIT scientists measure important process in the conversion of light energy -- publication in Nature Communications April 24th, 2015

Scientists Use Nanoscale Building Blocks and DNA 'Glue' to Shape 3D Superlattices: New approach to designing ordered composite materials for possible energy applications April 23rd, 2015

'Holey' graphene for energy storage: Charged holes in graphene increase energy storage capacity April 22nd, 2015

Expanding the reach of metallic glass April 22nd, 2015

Automotive/Transportation

Nanoparticles Used to Improve Mechanical, Thermal Properties of Cellulose Fibers April 23rd, 2015

'Holey' graphene for energy storage: Charged holes in graphene increase energy storage capacity April 22nd, 2015

Expanding the reach of metallic glass April 22nd, 2015

Nanocomposites Play Effective Role in Production of Smart Fibers April 18th, 2015

Battery Technology/Capacitors/Generators/Piezoelectrics/Thermoelectrics/Energy storage

Phonons, arise! Small electric voltage alters conductivity in key materials April 22nd, 2015

New class of 3D-printed aerogels improve energy storage April 22nd, 2015

'Holey' graphene for energy storage: Charged holes in graphene increase energy storage capacity April 22nd, 2015

‘Oxford Instruments Young Nanoscientist India Award 2015’ to Prof. Arindam Ghosh April 20th, 2015

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Scientists join forces to reveal the mass and shape of single molecules April 27th, 2015

Graphenea celebrates fifth anniversary April 27th, 2015

Feynman Prize Winners Announced! April 26th, 2015

QD Vision Wins 2015 Bronze Edison Award for Color IQ™ Quantum Dot Technology April 26th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project