Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

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

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Announces Availability of 45nm RF SOI to Advance 5G Mobile Communications: Optimized RF features deliver high-performance solutions for mmWave beam forming applications in 5G smartphones and base stations February 22nd, 2017

EmTech Asia breaks new barriers with potential applications of space exploration with NASA and MIT February 22nd, 2017

JPK selects compact tensile stage from Deben for their NanoWizardŽ AFM platform to broaden capabilities for materials characterisation February 22nd, 2017

Molecular phenomenon discovered by advanced NMR facility: Cutting edge technology has shown a molecule self-assembling into different forms when passing between solution state to solid state, and back again - a curious phenomenon in science - says research by the University of Wa February 22nd, 2017

Military

'Lossless' metamaterial could boost efficiency of lasers and other light-based devices February 20th, 2017

Engineers shrink microscope to dime-sized device February 17th, 2017

Graphene foam gets big and tough: Rice University's nanotube-reinforced material can be shaped, is highly conductive February 13th, 2017

Meta-lenses bring benchtop performance to small, hand-held spectrometer: Game-changing nanostructure-based lenses allow smaller devices, increased functionality February 9th, 2017

Energy

Strem Chemicals and Dotz Nano Ltd. Sign Distribution Agreement for Graphene Quantum Dots Collaboration February 21st, 2017

'Lossless' metamaterial could boost efficiency of lasers and other light-based devices February 20th, 2017

In-cell molecular sieve from protein crystal February 14th, 2017

NREL research pinpoints promise of polycrystalline perovskites February 8th, 2017

Automotive/Transportation

Leti Coordinating Project to Adapt Obstacle-Detection Technology Used in Autonomous Cars for Portable and Wearable Systems: INSPEX to Combine Knowhow of Nine European Organizations to Create Portable and Wearable Spatial-Exploration Systems February 2nd, 2017

Metallic hydrogen, once theory, becomes reality: Harvard physicists succeed in creating 'the holy grail of high-pressure physics' January 28th, 2017

Nanoscale view of energy storage January 16th, 2017

Illinois team advances GaN-on-Silicon for scalable high electron mobility transistors January 10th, 2017

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

Tiny nanoclusters could solve big problems for lithium-ion batteries February 21st, 2017

Strem Chemicals and Dotz Nano Ltd. Sign Distribution Agreement for Graphene Quantum Dots Collaboration February 21st, 2017

Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms: In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport February 20th, 2017

Researchers optimize the assembly of micro-/meso-/macroporous carbon for Li-S batteries February 13th, 2017

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

Oxford Instruments announces Dr Brad Ramshaw of Cornell University, as winner of the 2017 Lee Osheroff Richardson Science Prize February 20th, 2017

Nominations Invited for $250,000 Kabiller Prize in Nanoscience: Major international prize recognizes a visionary nanotechnology researcher February 20th, 2017

'Lossless' metamaterial could boost efficiency of lasers and other light-based devices February 20th, 2017

Good vibrations help reveal molecular details: Rice University scientists combine disciplines to pinpoint small structures in unlabeled molecules February 15th, 2017

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