Cables made out of nanowires could be just as efficient as the copper cables we’ve been using for more than a century, but at a fraction of the weight, according to a new paper. Braiding billions of carbon nanotubes into a nanowire cable can efficiently replace copper in a light bulb circuit.
Overhauling inefficient plants and an ancient grid
By Adam M. BrightPosted 02.01.2010 at 10:29 am 11 Comments
A 2006 study at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that power interruptions cost the economy about $79 billion annually, or about one third of national electric spending, thanks to our aging grid. Meanwhile, energy use is expected to grow by 1,150 terawatt-hours—the equivalent of adding 13 New York Cities—by 2030. A smarter power grid will surely help, but we'll need additional innovations like these to keep up with spiking demand.