News

May 30, 2018

Scientists can computationally predict all sorts of novel materials but, until now, had no way of knowing if it could actually be synthesized. Berkeley Lab researchers Muratahan Aykol, Shyam Dwaraknath, Wenhao Sun, and Kristin Persson have now found a chemically sensitive, rigorous thermodynamic limit to determine when a material can’t be made, a discovery which could greatly accelerate innovation in batteries, photovoltaics, and many other areas. Their... Read More

March 29, 2018

Li-ion battery development relies on the chemical reaction of the active elements in the electrode’s materials. A promising new strategy uses an unconventional element typically believed to be inactive. In a recent paper, ETA’s Wei Tong and Bryan McCloskey, and Wanli Yang of the ALS, reveal experimental evidence to confirm the contribution of this unconventional element. Read the full article at nature.com.

March 28, 2018

It may be only a matter of time before urban dwellers can hail a self-driving taxi, so researchers at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and UC Berkeley decided to analyze the cost, energy, and environmental implications of a fleet of self-driving electric vehicles operating in Manhattan.

Using models they built and data from more than 10 million taxi trips in New York City, they found that shared automated electric vehicles, or... Read More

March 22, 2018

On World Water Day, watch researcher Emily Tow of the Energy Technologies Area talk about her project to treat municipal wastewater in an energy-efficient way and bring it up to drinking water standards. Using the Molecular Foundry, she is looking at biofouling of membranes used to treat wastewater.

March 20, 2018

Our second video for World Water Day this week features Chinmayee Subban, a researcher in the Energy Technologies Area. She discusses her technology for removing salt from low salinity water, a tech solution that could provide an alternative irrigation source for California’s agriculture needs.

 

December 08, 2017

Kristin Persson of the Energy Technologies Area was a recent guest on the NPR radio program "Marketplace," where she discussed developments in battery technology. Lithium-ion batteries currently in use are "highly optimized" and not likely to improve, she says. "If you're going to do a better battery, you have to discover a completely new material." Read or listen to the full interivew at:... Read More

November 21, 2017

The China Energy Group took home a prestigious R&D 100 Award for its innovative Benchmarking and Energy Saving Tool for Low-Carbon Cities (BEST Cities), which provides software for low-carbon planning that users can easily install and run.

Berkeley Lab also won awards for technologies that help determine how solar energy affects the grid; understand the functions of genes in microbes under different environmental conditions; and simulate how chemical reactions occur and change as... Read More

November 13, 2017

Like a well-tended greenhouse garden, a specialized type of hydrogen fuel cell – which shows promise as a clean, renewable next-generation power source for vehicles and other uses – requires precise temperature and moisture controls to be at its best. If the internal conditions are too dry or too wet, the fuel cell won’t function well.

But seeing inside a working fuel cell at the tiny scales relevant to a fuel cell’s chemistry and physics is challenging, so scientists used X-... Read More

October 26, 2017

Hydro-Québec and the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have agreed to explore collaborations toward the research and development of manufacturing and scale-up technology to advance transportation electrification and energy storage. 

The two institutions have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to assess the feasibility of creating a Québec Berkeley (QUBE) joint research center based in the San Francisco Bay... Read More

October 24, 2017

Ravi Prasher, division director of the Energy Storage & Distributed Resources Division at Berkeley Lab, recently gave a talk at UC Berkeley about the electricity grid. Below is an excerpt and video of his talk.

Fossil fuels have powered economic growth and improved quality of life for more than two centuries – and for good reason.  

They can store a great deal of energy, and it can be used any time. It’s available on demand. Renewable energy technology today can’t... Read More

September 27, 2017

As the U.S. electricity grid continues to modernize, it will mean things like better reliability and resilience, lower environmental impacts, greater integration of renewable energy, as well as new computing and communications technologies to monitor and manage the increasing number of devices that connect to the grid. However, that enhanced connectivity for grid operators and consumers also opens the door to potential cyber intrusions.

As part of the Department of Energy's (... Read More

September 18, 2017

New projects for hydrogen storage and fuel cell performance aim to bring down cost of fuel cell electric vehicles.

A powdery mix of metal nanocrystals wrapped in single-layer sheets of carbon atoms, developed at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), shows promise for safely storing hydrogen for use with fuel cells for passenger vehicles and other uses. And now, a new study provides insight into the atomic details of the... Read More

August 28, 2017

U.S.-India Consortium Will Advance Cutting-Edge Technologies that Promote Greater Energy Independence and Economic Growth

Berkeley Lab's Energy Storage and Distributed Resources Division (ESDR) will be part of a consortium for a joint U.S.-India five-year project that will help advance the development of the power grid.

ESDR will join a team led by Washington State University. The consortium has been awarded $7.5 million from the Department of Energy (DOE) for the project. The... Read More

June 13, 2017

Surprising discovery is a major advance for low-cost, high-energy batteries

Lithium-sulfur batteries have great potential as a low-cost, high-energy, energy source for both vehicle and grid applications. However, they suffer from significant capacity fading. Now scientists from the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have made a surprising discovery that could fix this problem.

Carrageenan, an unexpected battery... Read More

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