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Energy Roundup

August 29, 2008

New technology could yield alternative energy sources from water.


Producing watts from water. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

Scientists at MIT’s Energy Initiative report that they’ve found a new way to split water into hydrogen and oxygen — the ingredients of clean fuel cells. The researchers found that a mixture of cobalt and phosphates dissolved in water lowers the amount of energy needed to split the water molecules. The goal is to use solar energy or wind to power the process.

In other energy news, British scientists have tested a rubber, water-filled tube they call the Anaconda to generate electricity from ocean waves. One end points out to sea, the other toward shore. As waves move past, wave pressure compresses the water in the tube, forming a bulge that moves toward the shore and spins a turbine. The team estimates that an Anaconda two football fields long could generate enough power for 2000 homes. I’m Bob Hirshon for AAAS, the Science Society.