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Hydrogen Properties for Energy Research (HYPER) Laboratory Cool. Fuel.

Seattle is waking up to hydrogen’s future in the Northwest

The Seattle Times recently posted a user testimony of the Hyundai Tucson hydrogen fuel cell vehicle:

Sadly, the closest fueling station to Seattle is in San Francisco. Let’s take this moment and think about Seattle’s commute and the zero-emission options.

Seattle's Electrified buses

Downtown Seattle is extensively electrified for trolley buses. Aside from the mountain of copper it took to run the wires, that’s great for the environment, not so great for tourism or the pocket book. Electrification of just Seattle … » More …

A hydrogen economy for Jefferson County Washington

Jefferson County Washington is embracing their sustainable energy future. I recently gave a presentation at their Clean Energy luncheon in Port Townsend and was both proud and amazed by the level of engagement combined with a sense of urgency from the community. Video from the full talk starts at 5:00 here: A major part of humanities sustainable energy future will rely on local county and community efforts to work together for mutual benefit. Good luck Jefferson County!

UK report quantifies need for cryogenics research

A report by the Science and Technology Facilities Council of the United Kingdom was just released that emphasizes and quantifies the benefit of cryogenics to the UK economy. Here are a few statistics from the full report:

-Total direct and indirect annual contributions to UK economy is $492 million.

-Between $2.4-$5 billion generated in next 10 years.

To place this into context, the US economy is 2.5 times the size of the UK’s. If it scales, that could mean $1.5 billion/year generated in the US from a field that produces less than a handful of graduate engineers/year across the US. NASA and other … » More …

The HOW of a Hydrogen Organized World

In 1964 Nikolai Kardashev, a Soviet astronomer, postulated a method of measuring a civilization’s level of technological advancement based on energy utilization. The resulting Kardashev scale describes these civilizations (summarized by me):

Type 0– Civilization harnesses organically produced and derived sources (fossil fuels, food, wood, etc.) that exist on scales comparable to individuals and small cultures within the society.
Type 1– Civilization evolves to world level energy produced and derived sources (nuclear, wind, solar, etc.) that exist on scales requiring mass efforts of an entire country and world to achieve. The energy sources have potential to simultaneously move effectively beyond the home planet … » More …

On the threshold of Washington State’s clean hydrogen economy

I recently made the case for a clean hydrogen economy in Washington State at the monthly Technology Alliance Science and Discovery Series. The slides from the talk are here. Alyssa Patrick was tweeting during the event and made a follow up blog post about the talk. In short, a clean hydrogen economy could happen soon and look like this in Washington State:

1) Hydrogen production: To add more infrequent renewables (wind, solar, tidal, etc.) to the grid, Bonneville Power needs more ways to balance the grid, adding power in some cases, removing power in others. Hydrogen electrolysis systems are ready and can respond rapidly … » More …

The only thing loony about Google’s project Loon is the helium.

Google’s project Loon  may be our best chance at saving the planet. Free access to humanity’s collective knowledge will do more than anything to assist those in 3rd world countries to help themselves,, and to inform those of us in the 1st world how bad things really are. The irony of Loon may be the “Balloon-powered” part of the “internet for all” slogan.

The balloons used in Loon are inflated with helium, yes the same gas filling in your party balloons, that is truly a depleting planetary resource. Helium cannot be created by any process besides nuclear reactions, in the sun or deep in the earth, and has escape velocity. … » More …