EERE Network News
August 24, 2005
News and Events
New homes built to "green building" standards will soon be eligible to receive the same level of certification as is currently available for commercial buildings. The U.S. Green Building Council is launching a one-year trial for its new LEED rating system for homes, which will reward top homebuilders.
According to a new online software tool for managers of fleets of vehicles, today's high gasoline prices make hybrid vehicles a cost-effective choice for fleets. The new tool takes into account purchase price, fuel costs, repair and maintenance costs, resale value, and tax incentives.
General Electric's research arm has built a diode from carbon nanotubes that operates at the theoretical limit of perfection for diodes, and also is able to convert sunlight into electricity. The diode could be put to use in solar cells and a wide variety of electronic devices, including light-emitting diodes.
A Spanish company is currently building a device that will use a field of mirrors to concentrate solar energy on a receiver mounted on a tower, converting that energy into 11 megawatts of electricity. The solar power tower technology was tested on a similar scale in the U.S. in the '80s and '90s.
What is the ultimate source of heat for geothermal energy? Scientists believe the heat rising to Earth's surface comes in part from the Earth's formation and in part from radioactive decays. A device intended to study neutrino physics is the first to directly measure radioactive decays within our planet.
The Labs 21 program aims to improve the energy efficiency and environmental performance of U.S. laboratories by examining facilities from a "whole building" perspective.
As gasoline prices hit new records, two new studies suggest that U.S. drivers may be driving less. One of the studies, from the Polk Center for Automotive Studies, also suggests that many U.S. consumers will put off buying a new car, but when they do, they plan to buy a more fuel-efficient vehicle.