delware environmental institute


Environmental news from Delaware and the surrounding region.

03/13/2017 -

University of Delaware electrical engineering graduate student Abhishek Iyer and his team are all working toward a low-cost, high-efficiency solar cell that can be processed in a lab environment. From the very beginning they were looking to find a commercial viability for the research they were doing. Their goal: scale it from their research and find a place in the current market.

03/13/2017 -

Modern society’s extensive use of fossil fuels has led to unprecedented atmospheric carbon dioxide levels with widespread climate impacts. Carbon dioxide capture and sequestration is one of the technologies under investigation to mitigate CO2 emissions associated with coal-fired power plants. However, according to the University of Delaware’s Feng Jiao, large-scale CO2 sequestration poses risks to the environment from leakage. Other disadvantages include limited efficient geological repositories and high transportation and compression costs.

03/13/2017 -

The University of Delaware’s Dion Vlachos, who has been named the Allan and Myra Ferguson Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, will deliver his inaugural lecture at 4 p.m., Monday, April 17, in Room 204 Kirkbride Hall. A reception will follow at 5 p.m. in the DuPont Hall Lobby. Those who plan to attend should RSVP by email to Sue Zatto.

03/13/2017 -

In August 2015, University of Delaware oceanographer Andreas Muenchow and colleagues deployed the first UD ocean sensors underneath Petermann Glacier in North Greenland, which connects the great Greenland ice sheet directly with the ocean. Petermann Glacier is the second largest floating ice shelf in the northern hemisphere.

International research team reports ocean acidification spreading rapidly in Arctic Ocean in area and depth
02/28/2017 -

Ocean acidification (OA) is spreading rapidly in the western Arctic Ocean in both area and depth, according to new interdisciplinary research reported in Nature Climate Change by a team of international collaborators, including University of Delaware professor Wei-Jun Cai.

The research shows that, between the 1990s and 2010, acidified waters expanded northward approximately 300 nautical miles from the Chukchi slope off the coast of northwestern Alaska to just below the North Pole. Also, the depth of acidified waters was found to have increased, from approximately 325 feet to over 800 feet (or from 100 to 250 meters).

Researchers show US grid can handle more offshore wind power, cutting pollution and power costs
02/22/2017 -

Injecting large amounts of offshore wind power into the U.S. electrical grid is manageable, will cut electricity costs, and will reduce pollution compared to current fossil fuel sources, according to researchers from the University of Delaware and Princeton University who have completed a first-of-its-kind simulation with the electric power industry.

The researchers consulted with PJM Interconnection — a grid operator supplying electricity to more than 60 million people in 14 states — to develop a computer model that simulates how the electric grid would respond to injections of wind power from offshore wind farms along the East Coast at five build-out levels, between 7 and 70 gigawatts of installed capacity. The two-part study is published in the journal Renewable Energy.


UD’s Inamdar receives funding to investigate water quality impacts of legacy sediments
02/17/2017 -

A University of Delaware researcher has been awarded a $499,500 grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to determine if stream-bank legacy sediments are significant sources of nutrients to surface waters and investigate how they may influence microbial processes and nutrient cycling in aquatic ecosystems.

Shreeram Inamdar, professor in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences (PLSC) in UD’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and director of the Water Science and Policy graduate program, will be joined on the project by Jinjun Kan, a microbial ecologist from the Stroud Water Research Center (SWRC) in Avondale, Pennsylvania.

NSF Career Award to focus on electrochemical reduction of atmospheric carbon dioxide
02/16/2017 -

The University of Delaware’s Bingjun Xu has received a National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award to address electrochemical reduction of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.

The five-year, $523,000 grant, “Elucidating Molecular Level Interplay Between Catalysts and Electrolytes in Electrochemical Reduction of CO2,” was awarded through NSF’s Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems.

02/03/2017 -

The Delaware Environmental Institute (DENIN) will host its second symposium for graduate student researchers on Thursday, March 16. The symposium will take place from 5-7 p.m. in the Harker Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Laboratory and will include both oral presentations and a poster session. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top posters.

UD professor’s book explores all sides of GMO controversy
01/27/2017 -

University of Delaware Prof. McKay Jenkins began researching the topic of genetically modified organisms — GMOs — in an effort to answer the same simple question that many Americans have about these controversial foods: Are they safe to eat?

But he found that the answer was far from simple. And in fact, he decided, that might not even be the right question.

>Food Fight: GMOs and the Future of the American Diet, Jenkins first examines GMOs themselves and the process of genetic engineering, but he moves on to much broader issues involving the U.S. diet, food supply and agriculture industry.