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A new report outlines the challenges and opportunities for the state’s 200 isolated communities that pay some of the highest electricity and heating costs in the nation. Peter Larsen of the Energy Technologies Area, was among the study’s authors.
As climate change disrupts weather patterns, many countries face swamping along the coasts, but also shrinking freshwater supplies in many regions. The Lab’s Ashok Gadgil is the principal investigator on the U.S. side of a new $64 million collaboration between China and the United States to develop strategies and technologies to conserve water in energy production and use.
A start-up team, including Dr. Hanna Breunig of the Sustainable Energy Systems group at LBNL, was recently accepted into the Bay Area regional NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps™), a program designed to help start-ups conduct customer discovery. Torq3, the start-up team, is developing new configurations of the Halbach Array Electric Motor (HAEM) to make them more powerful and energy efficient. Improving these characteristics will allow the new... Read More
Automated vehicles can both drive more efficiently and be designed to be lighter, saving energy. However, the convenience of not having to pay attention on the road may lead people to use them more, increasing energy consumption. Which effect will tend to prevail? ETA’s Jeff Greenblatt seeks to answer that question in a blog posted on... Read More
A new report issued by researchers in the Energy Technologies Area, “Maximizing MWh: A Statistical Analysis of the Performance of Utility-Scale Photovoltaic Projects in the United States,” presents the first known use of multivariate regression techniques to statistically explore empirical variation in utility-scale PV project performance across the United States.
Berkeley, CA — The price of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems installed on homes and small businesses spans a wide range, and researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have published a new study that reveals... Read More
Berkeley, CA — A new study estimates that $2.2 billion in benefits came from reduced greenhouse gas emissions and $5.2 billion from reductions in other air pollution for state renewable portfolio standard (RPS) policies operating in 2013. The report also shows national water withdrawals and consumption were reduced by 830 billion gallons and 27 billion gallons in 2013, respectively. The report, entitled... Read More
The Department of Energy announced historic new efficiency standards for commercial air conditioners and furnaces. The Lab’s Energy Technologies Area provided technical assistance to DOE and the stakeholder working group that negotiated the standards, as well as conducted the supporting energy savings and economic analyses which were key inputs to forge this consensus.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and UC Berkeley announced they are partnering with Tsinghua University in Beijing to form the Berkeley Tsinghua Joint Research Center on Energy and Climate Change, a center that will aim to develop scientifically based clean energy solutions and the next generation of leaders to champion those solutions.
The three parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Paris today. “Berkeley Lab’s... Read More
Results Confirm Earlier Berkeley Lab Large-Scale Study
Photovoltaics added value to homes in six markets, according to a new report titled “Appraising into the Sun: Six-State Solar Home Paired-Sales Analysis,” led by a researcher from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and a home appraisal expert. Researchers engaged a team of seven appraisers from across the six states to determine the value... Read More
As grid-connected solar and wind resources become more prevalent, fifteen-minute resources—energy technologies that can be brought online quickly to cover dips in generation—become more important for grid stability. A recent study by Andrew Mills and Joachim Seel of Lawrence... Read More
"You are literally changing the world, and I am honored to be part of it, even if for few hours" said Arwa Guesmi, from Tunisia after her visit to Berkeley Lab. Guesmi is an Emerging Leader (EL) at the U.S. Department of State's TechWomen program. Nine TechWomen ELs from seven countries visited Berkeley Lab on October 14th to learn more about energy research and green technology. The visiting group was hosted by the Energy Technologies Area (ETA... Read More
Berkeley Lab researchers are measuring truck emissions from above the Caldecott Tunnel. The effort, led by Berkeley lab Staff Scientist Thomas Kirchstetter, aims to track pollutants emitted not just from trucks generally, but from individual trucks. The study has already determined that California’s new emissions controls seem to be working, with “a factor of 10 decrease in the amount of diesel particulate matter".
Click the link below to read... Read More
Berkeley Lab study reveals 70% decline in PPA prices since 2009
Solar energy pricing is at an all-time low, according to a new report released by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). Driven by lower installed costs, improved project performance, and a race to build projects ahead of a reduction in a key federal incentive, utility-scale solar project developers have been negotiating power sales agreements with utilities at prices... Read More
Berkeley Lab scientists have been awarded $1.3 million to study health impacts of thirdhand smoke.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) researchers have been awarded $1.3 million for two sets of studies to better understand the health impacts of thirdhand smoke, the noxious residue that clings to virtually all indoor surfaces long after the secondhand smoke from a cigarette has cleared out.
The two three-year grants are from the... Read More
On Thursday, September 24, 2015, the honorable LI Qiang, Governor of Zhejiang Province, led a delegation team from Zhejiang Province to visit Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). Honorary Zhejiang delegates accompanying the Governor included Yonghui Jin, Director General of Zhejiang Provincial Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs Department, Jianming Shen, Deputy Secretary General of Zhejiang Provincial People's Government, and... Read More
The China Energy Group of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) participated in the two-day U.S.-China Climate Leaders Summit in Los Angeles this week. The Summit fulfills a key element of the U.S.-China Joint Announcement on Climate Change by Presidents Obama and Xi last November, helping to ensure that the... Read More
New report finds that increasingly severe weather is linked to longer lasting power outages
In the most comprehensive analysis of electricity reliability trends in the United States, researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and Stanford University have found that, while, on average, the frequency of power outages has not changed in recent years, the total number of minutes customers are without power each year has been... Read More
Latest "Tracking the Sun" report highlights progress in lowering solar soft costs
Berkeley, CA — The installed price of distributed solar photovoltaic (PV) power systems in the United States continues to fall precipitously. This is according to the latest edition of Tracking the Sun, an annual PV cost tracking report produced by the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab).
Installed prices for... Read More
Wind energy pricing is at an all-time low, according to a new report released by the U.S. Department of Energy and prepared by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). The prices offered by wind projects to utility purchasers averaged under 2.5¢/kWh for projects negotiating contracts in 2014, spurring demand for wind energy.
“Wind energy prices—particularly in the central United States—have hit new lows, with utilities selecting... Read More
A new paper co-authored by ETA researcher Jeff Greenblatt looks at the potential energy and environmental impacts of combining two emerging trends: driverless cars and on-demand mobility. He notes several synergies that may result from using autonomous vehicles as shared cars, including lower greenhouse gas emissions.
Berkeley, CA – Future distributed solar photovoltaic (PV) deployment levels are highly sensitive to retail electricity rate design, according to a newly released report by researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab). The study also explores the feedback effects between retail electricity rates and PV deployment, and suggests that increased solar deployment can lead to changes in PV... Read More
New Berkeley Lab study finds lower greenhouse gas emissions on per-mile basis for driverless cars deployed as taxis.
Imagine a fleet of driverless taxis roaming your city, ready to pick you up and take you to your destination at a moment’s notice. While this may seem fantastical, it may be only a matter of time before it becomes reality. And according to a new study from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), such a system would... Read More
What does it cost to save electricity?
Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have conducted the most comprehensive study yet of the full cost of saving electricity by U.S. utility efficiency programs and now have an answer: 4.6 cents. That's the average total cost of saving a kilowatt-hour in 20 states from 2009 to 2013, according to a Berkeley Lab report titled,... Read More
Standards body approves Berkeley Lab’s method to mimic natural soiling of roofing materials.
Cool roofs can help keep buildings cool, thus lowering the building’s energy use, while also mitigating the urban heat island effect by reflecting sunlight away from buildings and cities. But as cool roofs age and get soiled, how much of their reflectance do they lose?
A collaboration led by scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley... Read More
Energy Technologies Area researcher Vi Rapp spoke at Build It Green’s 2014 Healthy Homes Conference in Berkeley, California on reducing carbon monoxide exposure risks. Tom White, Home Energy publisher, spoke with her to clear up misconceptions about combustion safety.
See the link below to read the full story in Home Energy.
Career Spotlight: Research Scientist and Mechanical Engineer
Vi Rapp is a research scientist with Berkeley Lab’s Energy Technologies Area. She has a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and focuses her research on improving combustion systems. One aspect of her work is designing cleaner, more efficient cookstoves.
Click the link below to see the full story on KQED's Quest program.