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  • Narrator: Energy.

  • On Earth we use it everyday.

  • Lighting our homes, driving our cars, just about everything.

  • But what about in space?

  • In the future, NASA's astronauts will need energy resources in order to live and work on other planets.

  • In the 1990s at the University of Arizona, K.R. Sridhar and his team were working with NASA

  • on a technology that could use solar power to convert CO2 on Mars

  • into oxygen for breathing and fuel.

  • The relationship is that you're taking electricity typically from solar panels if you're on Mars,

  • and you electrolyze CO2, and what you get at the other end is oxygen and fuel.

  • And the fuel in this case is carbon monoxide.

  • Sridhar had an idea for another application of the technology for here on Earth.

  • By reversing the original concept,

  • the device had the potential to take oxygen and fuel and generate energy.

  • John Finn: Literally, if you just turn the wires around like this,

  • you can make something that behaves like a fuel cell.

  • Now it's not the kind of fuel cell that you can commercialize--

  • there's a lot of changes that you need to make--

  • but the physics works.

  • Narrator: In 2001, KR and his team moved to the NASA Research Park at Ames Research Center

  • to foster the development of their new fuel cell idea.

  • Now known as Bloom Energy, the firm is located in Sunnyvale, California

  • where they are producing solid oxide fuel cells based on the original NASA work.

  • The electrochemical device, a solid oxide fuel cell,

  • can produce electricity directly from oxidizing the fuel.

  • Although fuel cells have been around for a long time, Bloom's product is different.

  • Theirs are not made from precious metals or corrosive acids.

  • Stu Aaron: We use the phrase "powder to power" a lot.

  • And the reason for that is that you see here just about all the elements that go into the cell itself

  • start out as readily available powders from different places.

  • We turn those powders into inks, again using some chemicals and other materials,

  • And once you've got inks, we paint the on these cells

  • using a process that's a lot like what you would use to silkscreen t-shirts.

  • Narrator: Besides its materials, Bloom's fuel cell has a couple of other advantages.

  • They're high temperature, making them fuel flexible and very efficient.

  • Stu Aaron: Which means twice as much electricity for the same amount of fuel

  • or half as much carbon for the same amount of electricity.

  • Narrator: The technology is also reversible.

  • Stu Aaron: We can combine it with renewable, but intermittent technologies like solar and wind,

  • and when the sun is out or the wind is blowing,

  • you can take the electricity that a solar panel would produce,

  • run it through the system in that Mars direction, produce air, produce fuel.

  • Narrator: Each fuel cell generates enough energy to power an average lightbulb.

  • To build large servers, Bloom stacks the cells.

  • Stu Aaron: This stack has about 25 cells in it and this stack is half a kilowatt.

  • This is enough to power half of an average U.S. home,

  • or a whole average European home, or two average Asian homes.

  • Narrator: In 2008, Bloom installed its first server at Google.

  • Since then, Ebay and others now have servers helping to generate their power.

  • Stu Aaron: We can ultimately deploy these units in remote parts of Africa or Asia

  • and bring power where there is no power today.

  • Narrator: And then who knows. Maybe Mars.

Narrator: Energy.


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NASA成功的標誌視頻。彭博能源 (NASA Hallmark of Success Video: Bloom Energy)

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    songwen8778 發佈於 2021 年 01 月 14 日