The Science of Sustainability

Physics

Darfur Stoves Project

Darfur Stoves Project

Since the Darfur crisis began in 2003, women living in the refugee camps walked for up to seven hours outside the safety of the camps to collect firewood for cooking, putting them at risk for violent attacks. Now, researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have engineered a more efficient wood-burning stove, which is greatly reducing both the women's need for firewood and the threats against them.

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Microgrids: Electricity Goes Local

Microgrids: Electricity Goes Local

Microgrids, which can connect to the main grid but also have their own, independent energy supply, increase energy efficiency and keep expensive power outages from spreading.

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Bike To The Future

Bike To The Future

Meet the ELF — a solar and pedal powered vehicle bridging the gap between bicycles and cars. See the ELF in action in this new QUEST video.

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Why a Dark Sky Matters

Why a Dark Sky Matters

Big city lights may put some dazzle in the night sky, but they also cause problems for people and other creatures attuned to darkness.

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A Better Way to Patch Potholes

A Better Way to Patch Potholes

Inspired by footraces across a giant bathtub of cornstarch, engineering students think they have hit on a more efficient and environmentally friendly way to fix potholes.

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L.E.D. There Be Light

L.E.D. There Be Light

Paying less for more: how energy-efficient LED bulbs outshine the competition while saving you money.

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Solar plane takes off on historic cross-country trip

Solar plane takes off on historic cross-country trip

Lighter than an SUV and covered with more than 12,000 solar cells, Solar Impulse, the world's first solar plane that can fly day and night without recharging, launched from Moffet Field this morning in a cross country voyage.

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Attack of the Killer Electrons! New Mission Searches for Mysterious Space Particles

Attack of the Killer Electrons! New Mission Searches for Mysterious Space Particles

They're out there… lurking in Earth's magnetic fields and damaging any satellite in their path.

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Infrasound Takes a Bow

Infrasound Takes a Bow

Last week's events pushed the obscure subject of infrasound into the news. That was music to my science-obsessed ears.

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Exploratorium’s Science with Spirit Transcends Place

Exploratorium’s Science with Spirit Transcends Place

A record number of visitors mobbed San Francisco's Exploratorium on its last day at the Palace of Fine Arts. The mood was bittersweet–not just visitors but a good part of the staff grew up at this place. But for the Exploratorium, the magic of science is where you make it.

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More Clues About Singing Sand

More Clues About Singing Sand

New research shows that sand can sing by itself, but if so, then why are singing sand dunes so rare?

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Women in Science: Meet a Mathematician, a Physicist and a Geologist Through Art

Women in Science: Meet a Mathematician, a Physicist and a Geologist Through Art

There's nothing like role models for inspiring the scientific spirits of women, today and tomorrow! And Marie Curie isn't the only one out there–history is rife with lesser-known but no less fabulous female scientists, engineers, and mathematicians.

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What's Next for Nuclear?

What's Next for Nuclear?

Can nuclear power be produced safely and affordably? A scientist at the University of California, Berkeley, is working to do just that.

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Space Telescope to Begin Search for Black Holes

Space Telescope to Begin Search for Black Holes

NASA's newest space telescope, NuStar, will soon begin its hunt for black holes. Scientists are hoping to learn more about how they grow and why they're such messy eaters.

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Science on the SPOT: Up all Night with SOFIA, NASA's Flying Observatory

Science on the SPOT: Up all Night with SOFIA, NASA's Flying Observatory

SOFIA is more than a telescope tucked into a re-purposed commercial airliner. It's a complete flying astronomical observation platform which carries a dozen or more astronomers, observers and crew far above the clouds to observe objects and phenomena too cold to be seen in visible light.

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"I Flamed Amazement": The Physics of St. Elmo's Fire

"I Flamed Amazement": The Physics of St. Elmo's Fire

Ariel personified St. Elmo's Fire, the glow that can appear around ship masts and chimneys during a thunderstorm. Lacking a scientific explanation for the light, people in Shakespeare's time attributed it to the patron saint of sailors. Four hundred years later, we still don't completely understand how storms create such magnificent atmospheric phenomena.

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Soaring in Space: Citizen Science at 103,000 Feet

Soaring in Space: Citizen Science at 103,000 Feet

Citizen scientist Marc Labriet and students from Valley Christian High School in Dublin, CA collaborated on a special balloon project to retrieve images from near space as well as test theories on gamma rays and radiation repercussion yields.

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KQED Science Fan Spotlight

KQED Science Fan Spotlight

We'd like to share your stories about why you're passionate about science.

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Energy-Saving Windows Get Smarter

Energy-Saving Windows Get Smarter

Buildings are responsible for 40% of the country’s energy use. So, researchers are trying improve our energy efficiency by making windows dynamic and intelligent.

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The Science of Riding a Bicycle

The Science of Riding a Bicycle

Their basic design hasn’t changed much, but scientists still don’t fully understand the forces that allow humans to balance atop a bicycle. QUEST visits Davis – a city that loves its bicycles – to take a ride on a research bike and explore a collection of antique bicycles.

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