Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Transformational Challenge Reactor Demonstration Program director Kurt Terrani said in a recent meeting that progress is being made toward construction of a 14th reactor at ORNL, using 3D-printed nuclear reactor parts. The goal of the program is to make reactors that are cheaper, faster to build, and require fewer workers to maintain, Terrani says.
Five years ago, the UN's member nations approved 17 "Sustainable Development Goals" to "Meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." Today, standards are one of the driving forces helping to achieve these goals.
Texas A&M architecture professor Charles Culp's energy efficiency studies extend to his own home, which uses about 17,000 British thermal units of energy per square foot annually. Culp is studying how partial use, partial conditioned technology can help target rooms for heating and cooling.
Building and maintaining the world's roadways imposes a heavy cost on the environment, but new methods hold the potential for greater sustainability. Michael Abrams explores five alternatives and alterations, beginning with spray-on products that greatly preserve the sticky maltenes in asphalt that would otherwise break down after a few years.
Advances in floating and fixed foundations for offshore wind turbines promise more advantageous siting in deeper waters. In a podcast, Walt Musial, principal engineer and offshore wind lead for the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory, discusses what we can expect along these lines in the new year.
An autonomous sensor developed at Purdue University monitors oil circulation ratios, or OCRs, in real time to help businesses manage their refrigeration and heating systems. "Our cutting-edge approach for OCR quantification allows otherwise immiscible refrigerant pairs to be separated and analyzed by a sensor in the suction line of HVAC&R systems," said Vatsal Shah, a Purdue research assistant.
Researchers have used Freeform Reversible Embedding of Suspended Hydrogels, or FRESH, to bioprint a full-size model of an adult human heart from patient MRI data. The team printed alginate to mimic the elasticity of cardiac tissue.
Total productive maintenance boosts employee morale, engagement and productivity, writes Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director for EU Automation. The concept requires input and cooperation from all employees, who set targets and plan activities designed to meet them.
Drainage measures and retaining walls are among the renovation efforts being used on the Great Smoky Mountains National Park's Trillium Gap Trail in Tennessee. Water bars and staircases were required in some of the steepest areas where erosion tends to be intense.
The Maryland Environmental Service is beginning to gather sediment samples behind the Conowingo Dam and in Chesapeake Bay to guide a pilot dredging project to clean up pollution next year. The dam has reached the limit of its ability to stop pollution from reaching the bay, says MES.
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