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Tech Watch keeps an eye out on the latest developments in fundamental technology--the science and the building blocks that could eventually find their way into your electronics design projects. Learn about significant strides in R&D and investment of resources in domains that can impact the electronics industry.
  • Self-heating Li-ion cell eases sub-zero temperatures (26/01/16) Editor's Choice
    Conventional batteries at below freezing temperatures suffer severe power loss, which leads to slow charging in cold weather, restricted regenerative breaking and reduction of vehicle cruise range.

  • Researchers store solar energy in chemical form (12/01/16) Editor's Choice
    Researchers at MIT developed a transparent polymer film that could be applied to many different surfaces such as window glass or clothing that makes solar heat freely available.

  • Novel approach to solar power yields energy 24/7 (29/12/15) Editor's Choice
    The proposed hydricity concept from Purdue University's researchers represents a potential breakthrough solution for continuous and efficient power generation.

  • IBM develops pollution, energy-waste forecaster (10/12/15) Editor's Choice
    The Green Horizons Pollution Forecaster is based on Watson-like cognitive computing, which draws environmental big data from environmental monitoring stations, weather stations, and traffic cameras.

  • Plastic solar cell reduces photon energy loss (09/12/15) Editor's Choice
    Japanese researchers showed that a newly developed polymer can minimise energy loss as well as silicon-based solar cells when converting photon energy from sunlight to electricity.

  • 'Nanohoops' show promise in power, med apps (14/10/15) Editor's Choice
    University of Oregon chemist Ramesh Jasti developed small organic circular structures using carbon atoms to improve carbon nanotubes but further shows immense potential in other applications.

  • Microoptics offers lighted path to your car (06/10/15) Editor's Choice
    This design element available on the BMW 7-series is based on special microoptics developed by the Fraunhofer IOF, which provides a lighting system featuring a striped pattern of ground illumination.

  • New process makes low-cost wafers for solar cells (05/10/15) Editor's Choice
    A new manufacturing technique developed by Fraunhofer researchers reduces energy costs and puts an end to production losses in silicon wafers, which are important in creating solar cells.

  • Optical invisibility cloaks may boost solar panel efficiency (05/10/15) Editor's Choice
    KIT scientists developed an unconventional approach to increasing the efficiency of the panels by using optical invisibility cloaks to guide sunlight around objects that cast a shadow on the solar panel.

  • Optical rectenna converts light into electricity (29/09/15) Editor's Choice
    Using nanometre-scale components, Georgia Tech researchers developed the first optical rectenna, a device that combines an antenna and a rectifier diode to covert light into DC current.

  • Wiring perovskite solar cells to drive efficient EVs (01/09/15) Editor's Choice
    A team of researchers from Case Western Reserve University wired four perovskite solar cells in series to enhance the voltage and directly photo-charged lithium batteries with 7.8 per cent efficiency.

  • GPU enters open-source realm (28/08/15) Editor's Choice
    The Many-core Integrated Accelerator of Wisconsin (MIAOW) compares favourably on several benchmarks to AMD's latest high-end chip, Tahiti. However, it falls far short on other benchmarks.

  • Microscopic rake boosts PV cell efficiency (18/08/15) Editor's Choice
    A team of researchers has come up with a way to double the electricity output of inexpensive solar cells by using a microscopic rake when applying light-harvesting polymers.

  • Virginia Tech team creates energy-harvesting shock absorber (07/08/15) Editor's Choice
    Researchers at Virginia Tech's College of Engineering developed a shock absorber system geared to harvest large-scale vibrational energy from a car's suspension.

  • Better solar power generation inspired by butterflies (05/08/15)
    Researchers from the University of Exeter found methods for generating photovoltaic energy by mimicking the v-shaped posture adopted by Cabbage White butterflies to boost solar panel power.

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