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Income from e-sales in the EU in 2013 accounted for 15% of total turnover, and if estimates are correct, e-commerce will grow. However, this growth brings with it an increase in freight transport, especially in urban areas, which in turn contributes to air and noise pollution as well as traffic congestion.
Published: 20 July 2015
EU-funded researchers have used novel carbon materials to make lightweight, energy-efficient supercapacitors, the energy storage devices that supply power to electric vehicles during acceleration. Their work promises to extend the distance electric vehicles can travel before a recharge. This improved performance could boost their appeal on the market, help make EU manufacturers more competitive, and contribute to the EU's goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Published: 3 July 2015
Carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology has the potential to help the EU significantly cut its greenhouse gas emissions. However, a lack of low-cost and energy-efficient capture technologies is hampering their take-up. EU-funded researchers have developed new CCS technologies to produce efficient and cost-effective electrical power from fossil fuels with near-zero emissions. One solution has been patented, while another is being prepared for market.
Published: 18 June 2015
The world's oceans are veritable power houses. If we could harness the forces of their waves and tides on a large scale, they could provide a considerable amount of sustainable electric power. An innovative offshore test facility developed with EU funding and already on the market is taking us one step closer to that goal.
Published: 8 June 2015
A+, A++, even A+++. Looking at energy efficiency labels, it is hard to believe that some household appliances such as fridges could yet be made even more energy-efficient. EU-funded researchers have forged ahead in developing a technology that might achieve just that: magnetic cooling.
Published: 2 June 2015
Published: 13 May 2015
Electric vehicles have long been heralded as the future of transportation. They are relatively cheap to run, don't depend on declining oil stocks and don't release nasty emissions into the environment. But their initial cost, together with the inconvenience of finding charging points, is keeping electric vehicles in the showroom. EU-funded researchers are finding answers to these challenges with studies into the feasibility of wireless charging in public spaces.
Published: 20 April 2015
Most wind energy comes from turbines 150 metres above ground level. Winds at this altitude are however weak and intermittent, with most wind farms operating at only 25 - 30% of their capacity. EU-funded researchers have developed a prototype wind energy system that works at much higher altitudes, where winds are stronger and more constant, increasing electricity production dramatically. A commercialised product is in the pipeline.
Published: 17 April 2015
A major challenge facing full electric vehicles is the limited range between charges. An EU-backed project has designed a new-generation battery that can potentially power a car for up to 500 km, instead of the current 150 km, before needing to be recharged. This breakthrough could encourage more people to buy electric vehicles - good for the environment and Europe's competitiveness.
Published: 27 February 2015
Air transport is a growing and increasingly vital part of our rapidly globalising world. At the same time, the aeronautics industry faces an unprecedented set of challenges. Chief among these is the need for greener and more sustainable aviation. For everyone in the industry, the message is clear: successful 'green' innovation will be key.
Published: 4 February 2015