Enn Original News

Here Come the Electric Cars: "Leaf" and "Volt"
July 31, 2010 12:01 PM - Karina Grudnikov, Triple Pundit

Here's an article from Triple Pundit talking about the launch of two new electric cars: the Nissan "Leaf" (eco-friendly name, huh) and the GM "Volt." Read the article and let us know - would you buy either of these two vehicles? The Plug-In 2010 Conference in San Jose was the site of major announcements by major auto manufacturers Nissan and General Motors. During their Tuesday morning speeches, both Nissan North America’s executive vice president, Carlos Tavares, and General Motors vice president of U.S. marketing, Joel Ewanick, announced that their much-anticipated products would be available in only a limited number of cities, at first, and that both companies will begin delivering cars by the end of the year. Even though there are many similarities and differences, both Nissan and GM are betting that U.S. auto buyers will embrace the plug with open arms. The Leaf and the Volt are the first mass-market plug-in electric vehicles to be sold in the U.S. The LEAF is a “pure” battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, and has no gasoline motor whatsoever. Its range is approximately 100 miles. The Volt, however, with an “all-electric” range of only 40 miles, augments its smaller battery pack with a gas motor that can recharge the battery while the vehicle is in motion. While this gives the Volt unlimited effective range, it means that the Volt is not truly "zero emissions".

Nuclear Fusion
July 30, 2010 11:54 AM - Andy Soos, ENN

Fusion power is the power generated by nuclear fusion reactions. In this kind of reaction, two light atomic nuclei fuse together to form a heavier nucleus and in doing so, release a large amount of energy. The major difference between fission and fusion reactors is that there is no possibility of a catastrophic accident in a fusion reactor resulting in major release of radioactivity to the environment. The primary reason is that nuclear fusion requires precisely controlled temperature, pressure, and magnetic field parameters to generate net energy. If the reactor were damaged, these parameters would be disrupted and the heat generation in the reactor would rapidly cease. In contrast, the fission products in a fission reactor continue to generate heat through beta-decay for several hours or even days after reactor shut-down, meaning that melting of fuel rods is possible even after the reactor has been stopped due to continued accumulation of heat.

Good News for Gulf Fishermen
July 30, 2010 10:10 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

In response to the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, the federal government closed off vast areas of the ocean to fishing operations. Much of the area was closed off as a precaution, even if it was minimally touched by the spreading oil, to avoid a public health disaster from contaminated seafood. The good news is that about one-third of that closed off area has just been reopened by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). In the 26,388 square miles to be reopened, no oil has been observed for the past thirty days.

The Might of the Spider
July 29, 2010 07:12 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

Spider silk is a protein fiber spun by spiders. Spiders use their silk to make webs or other structures, which function as nets to catch other animals, or as nests or cocoons for protection for their offspring. Spider silk is as strong as many industrial fibers. There is commercial interest in duplicating spider silk artificially, since spiders use renewable materials as input and operate at room temperature, low pressures and using water as a solvent. However, it has been difficult to find a commercially viable process to mass produce spider silk.

Health Risks at the Beach
July 29, 2010 10:23 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

Just when you thought it was safe to go in the water... Sharks can be scary to encounter when swimming in the ocean. But they are not the most dangerous threat one can face at the beach. A new study from the University of Miami suggests that microbes in the water should be of much greater concern, especially in warmer waters. The team found that swimmers at sub-tropical beaches face an increased risk of illness.

The Arctic Continental Shelf
July 28, 2010 01:30 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

The Arctic still has unmapped and unknown areas. In particular, there is the continental shelf that extends out from the American and Canadian northern lands. Who controls it? Who has the right to drill for example which then leads into the complicated morass of environmental rules and controls. American and Canadian scientists are setting sail this summer to map the Arctic seafloor and gather data to help define the outer limits of the continental shelf. Each coastal nation may exercise sovereign rights over the natural resources of their continental shelf, which includes the seabed and subsoil. These rights include control over minerals, petroleum, and sedentary organisms such as clams, crabs and coral.

Elevated Ozone in New England
July 28, 2010 10:19 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

This past June and July have been some of the hottest months ever for the northeastern United States. The unwelcome heat wave has not only raised the mercury, but also the concentration of ground-level ozone. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has predicted that the elevated ozone will significantly decrease air quality in parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Maine.

Gulf Environment Forum 2011
July 27, 2010 05:13 PM - Roger Greenway, ENN

ENN is proud to be a media sponsor of the The Gulf Environment Forum. Environmental issues in the middle east are taken very seriously, and there are challenges to living and operating industries in an area with limited water and cooling capacity for industry. The Gulf Environment Forum (GEF) is Saudi Arabia’s official environment event, spearheaded by the presidency of Meteorology & Environment. Combining an international exhibition and conference, GEF provides a unique business platform for industry experts to demonstrate their expertise and play an active part in establishing a sustainable and environmentally responsible region for generations to come.

The Surface of Mars
July 27, 2010 03:06 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

A century ago an astronomer by the name of Lowell "discovered" the canals of Mars. Since then better images has shown that there are no canals. Now a camera aboard NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft has helped develop the most accurate global Martian map ever. Researchers and the public can access the map via several websites and explore and survey the entire surface of the Red Planet and imagine what it might be on the surface.

Holding Off Dementia
July 27, 2010 09:44 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

A new study by researchers at the University of Cambridge has discovered that people who have received more education are less likely to develop dementia. Previous studies have looked at this issue but have been unable to determine if it was education, and not its effects such as higher economic status or healthier living, that impacted the chances of dementia. This new study has found that dementia is in fact a direct consequence of the amount of education received earlier in life.

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