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Volume 4 Issue 8, August 2019

Volume 4 Issue 8

Pushed envelope

Building façades, windows or solar panel installations are stationary and typically do not respond to changing heat or sunlight. Svetozarevic et al. demonstrate the prototype of an adaptive solar façade where each photovoltaic module is individually adjusted by a soft-hard-material actuator to optimize heating, cooling, lighting and solar electricity generation.

See Svetozarevic et al.

Image: Arno Schlueter, ETH Zürich. Cover Design: Allen Beattie.

Editorial

  • Editorial |

    China is the biggest manufacturer of solar photovoltaics, and with declining local costs coupled with potential pollution reduction and health co-benefits, domestic use of solar photovoltaics might surge even more dramatically in the very near future.

Comment & Opinion

  • Comment |

    Access to rich, high-quality datasets is widely considered to be vital for energy research and public policy. While smart metering has the potential to revolutionize access to energy consumption data, coordinated efforts are needed from government, funding bodies and researchers to overcome the barriers to data access.

    • Ellen Webborn
    • Tadj Oreszczyn

Research Highlights

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    Understanding dendrite formation is key to advancing high-energy-density and safe metallic lithium batteries. With the help of cryogenic electron microscopy, heat is now suggested to play a crucial role in stabilizing lithium metal electrodes by suppressing dendrite growth.

    • Ganguli Babu
    • Pulickel M. Ajayan
  • News & Views |

    An unwelcome effect of rapid industrialization in China over the past 60 years has been the rise in air pollution. Researchers now estimate how the solar dimming caused by pollution reduced the potential for solar energy generation in China. However, reduction of pollution to 1960s levels can increase this potential significantly.

    • Ned Ekins-Daukes
    • Merlinde Kay
  • News & Views |

    The optimization of building envelopes plays a substantial role in reducing global energy consumption and meeting energy and climate targets. Now, a dynamic photovoltaic building envelope has been demonstrated to improve building energy self-sufficiency, while adapting to changing weather conditions and occupant needs.

    • Sophie Lufkin
  • News & Views |

    A conventional lithium-ion battery makes use of both an anode and a cathode. Now, a new design of batteries with no anodes in their initial state is shown to be promising for practical applications.

    • Ji-Guang Zhang

Reviews

Research

Amendments & Corrections

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