Developing Tomorrow’s Energy Sources Today
Virtually everyone assumes that wind, solar, and hydrothermal energy production will play a huge role in the way homes and businesses are powered in the future. The research into methods of producing low-cost, sustainable energy will not cease, however. It is unlikely that these will be the only forms of sustainable energy in use over the next few decades. A Texas energy provider comparison, for example, shows that retail providers are supporting green energy at unprecedented rates, which is pushing the boundaries of energy technology for the future. The radical ideas quickly approaching from the horizon ensure that the future of energy production will paint a very different picture from the one with which we are familiar.
Fuel Evolves in Tandem with Micro-Organisms
Biofuels are sure to play some part in the energy production process. Biologically based products are already pervasive in every part of industry from water purification to fertilization. Microbes are now making it possible to derive energy from plants. Biofuel is essentially being composed from fats, carbohydrates and oils that are naturally produced by certain species of plant life. The fuel requires very little in terms of production and refinement. It is a completely green source of energy that has a promising future. New research has indicated that fuels may even be possible by utilizing only the proteins of certain plants.
Small Computers, Big Rewards
Nanotechnology is also a rising star on the cutting edge of technology. Many of the fuels currently in use are based on hydrocarbons. Since the 1970s, scientists have sought a way to derive energy from hydrogen itself. The barrier has always been storage and production difficulties, which limit its practicality. However, nanotechnology is making storage of these small amounts of energy possible. As the technology yields more efficient ways of channeling the stored energy into direct application through the nano elements, the results will become more promising.
Going Higher in the Sky
No model of future energy production would be complete without the possibility of some strange, futuristic object hovering in the sky above our heads. That would be the direct result of utilizing flying wind farms. The project proposes putting turbines high into the air using kite-like or balloon elements. As the turbines spin due to the movement of wind and atmospheric pressure, the power generated is sent back down to earth through nano-tube cables. NASA has backed this idea with the hopes of achieving stunning elevations for the floating power generators. The federal government has even put forward $100,000 to aid in the research for this proposal.
Solar energy is far from reaching peak efficiency as well. New polymers are enabling scientists to develop solar cells that are unimaginably thin and flexible. The new form of solar tech will drastically reduce the cost for installing and maintaining solar panels. Along with the reduction in solar cell size comes the increase in their efficiency. These kinds of cells can be placed on material that is as flexible and thin as a piece of conventional film, allowing the “panels” to be fitted to any surface or wrap around corners.