2007 Renewable Energy: Solar Fuels Gordon Research Conference - January 21-26

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This Gordon Research Conference seeks to brings together chemists, physicists, materials scientists and biologists to address perhaps the outstanding technical problem of the 21st Century - the efficient, and ultimately economical, storage of energy from carbon-neutral sources. Such an advance would deliver a renewable, environmentally benign energy source for the future. A great technological challenge facing our global future is energy. The generation of energy, the security of its supply, and the environmental consequences of its use are among the world's foremost geopolitical concerns. Fossil fuels - coal, natural gas, and petroleum - supply approximately 90% of the energy consumed ... continued below

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Nocera, Daniel G. February 1, 2008.

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This Gordon Research Conference seeks to brings together chemists, physicists, materials scientists and biologists to address perhaps the outstanding technical problem of the 21st Century - the efficient, and ultimately economical, storage of energy from carbon-neutral sources. Such an advance would deliver a renewable, environmentally benign energy source for the future. A great technological challenge facing our global future is energy. The generation of energy, the security of its supply, and the environmental consequences of its use are among the world's foremost geopolitical concerns. Fossil fuels - coal, natural gas, and petroleum - supply approximately 90% of the energy consumed today by industrialized nations. An increase in energy supply is vitally needed to bring electric power to the 25% of the world's population that lacks it, to support the industrialization of developing nations, and to sustain economic growth in developed countries. On the geopolitical front, insuring an adequate energy supply is a major security issue for the world, and its importance will grow in proportion to the singular dependence on oil as a primary energy source. Yet, the current approach to energy supply, that of increased fossil fuel exploration coupled with energy conservation, is not scaleable to meet future demands. Rising living standards of a growing world population will cause global energy consumption to increase significantly. Estimates indicate that energy consumption will increase at least two-fold, from our current burn rate of 12.8 TW to 28 - 35 TW by 2050. - U.N. projections indicate that meeting global energy demand in a sustainable fashion by the year 2050 will require a significant fraction of the energy supply to come carbon free sources to stabilize atmospheric carbon dioxide levels at twice the pre-anthropogenic levels. External factors of economy, environment, and security dictate that this global energy need be met by renewable and sustainable sources from a carbon-neutral source. Sunlight is by far the most abundant global carbon-neutral energy resource. More solar energy strikes the surface of the earth in one hour than is obtained from all of the fossil fuels consumed globally in a year. Sunlight may be used to power the planet. However, it is intermittent, and therefore it must be converted to electricity or stored chemical fuel to be used on a large scale. The ''grand challenge'' of using the sun as a future energy source faces daunting challenges - large expanses of fundamental science and technology await discovery. A viable solar energy conversion scheme must result in a 10-50 fold decrease in the cost-to-efficiency ratio for the production of stored fuels, and must be stable and robust for a 20-30 year period. To reduce the cost of installed solar energy conversion systems to $0.20/peak watt of solar radiation, a cost level that would make them economically attractive in today's energy market, will require revolutionary technologies. This GRC seeks to present a forum for the underlying science needed to permit future generations to use the sun as a renewable and sustainable primary energy source.

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  • Renewable Energy: Solar Fuels, Ventura Beach Marriott, Ventura, CA January 21-26 2007

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  • Report No.: DE-FG02-07ER15845
  • Grant Number: FG02-07ER15845
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 923433
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc900200

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • February 1, 2008

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  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

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  • Nov. 22, 2016, 2:05 p.m.

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Nocera, Daniel G. 2007 Renewable Energy: Solar Fuels Gordon Research Conference - January 21-26, article, February 1, 2008; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc900200/: accessed November 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.