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

Nanoparticles could allow for faster, better medicine: Exposure of nanoparticles in the body allows for more effective delivery November 20th, 2017

ICN2 researchers compute unprecedented values for spin lifetime anisotropy in graphene November 17th, 2017

Math gets real in strong, lightweight structures: Rice University researchers use 3-D printers to turn century-old theory into complex schwarzites November 16th, 2017

The stacked color sensor: True colors meet minimization November 16th, 2017

Military

Math gets real in strong, lightweight structures: Rice University researchers use 3-D printers to turn century-old theory into complex schwarzites November 16th, 2017

Promising sensors for submarines, mines and spacecraft: MSU scientists are developing nanostructured gas sensors that would work at room temperature November 10th, 2017

Leti Joins DARPA-Funded Project to Develop Implantable Device for Restoring Vision November 9th, 2017

Nanoshells could deliver more chemo with fewer side effects: In vitro study verifies method for remotely triggering release of cancer drugs November 8th, 2017

Energy

Inorganic-organic halide perovskites for new photovoltaic technology November 6th, 2017

Dendritic fibrous nanosilica: all-in-one nanomaterial for energy, environment and health November 4th, 2017

New nanomaterial can extract hydrogen fuel from seawater: Hybrid material converts more sunlight and can weather seawater's harsh conditions October 4th, 2017

Researchers set time limit for ultrafast perovskite solar cells September 22nd, 2017

Automotive/Transportation

The next generation of power electronics? Gallium nitride doped with beryllium: How to cut down energy loss in power electronics? The right kind of doping November 9th, 2017

Leti Coordinating Project to Develop Innovative Drivetrains for 3rd-generation Electric Vehicles: CEA Tech’s Contribution Includes Liten’s Knowhow in Magnetic Materials and Simulation And Leti’s Expertise in Wide-bandgap Semiconductors October 20th, 2017

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Introduces New Automotive Platform to Fuel Tomorrow’s Connected Car: AutoPro™ provides a full range of technologies and manufacturing services to help carmakers harness the power of silicon for a new era of ‘connected intelligence’ October 12th, 2017

Organic/inorganic sulfur may be key for safe rechargeable lithium batteries October 12th, 2017

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

Dendritic fibrous nanosilica: all-in-one nanomaterial for energy, environment and health November 4th, 2017

New Atomic Force Microscope to study piezoelectrics at the nanoscale October 29th, 2017

Strange but true: turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer October 20th, 2017

On the road to fire-free, lithium-ion batteries made with asphalt October 12th, 2017

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

Math gets real in strong, lightweight structures: Rice University researchers use 3-D printers to turn century-old theory into complex schwarzites November 16th, 2017

Oxford Instruments announces winner of the 2017 Sir Martin Wood Prize for Japan November 14th, 2017

A new way to mix oil and water: Condensation-based method developed at MIT could create stable nanoscale emulsions November 8th, 2017

Nanoshells could deliver more chemo with fewer side effects: In vitro study verifies method for remotely triggering release of cancer drugs November 8th, 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