Citation: Stretchable sodium-ion battery electrodes made using sugar cubes (2017, April 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-04-stretchable-sodium-ion-battery-electrodes-sugar.html © 2017 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The scientists, led by Guihua Yu at the University of Texas at Austin, have published a paper on the new stretchable batteries in a recent issue of Advanced Materials.By starting with sugar cubes, the researchers were able to obtain the size, shape, and porosity needed for high-performance battery electrodes. The researchers first placed ordinary sugar cubes on top of a polymer gel in a dish. After the dish was placed in a vacuum, heated in an oven, and washed, the sugar was dissolved away and the polymer gel took its place, resulting in stretchable polymer sponges. The pores of the polymer sponges were then filled with a conductive graphene-based solution to create “sponge electrodes,” which the researchers achieved by immersing the sponges in the solution and squeezing them several times to soak it up.As the researchers explained, the sponge’s porous architecture provides a combination of stretchability, mechanical strength, fast sodium-ion transport, and large storage capacity. Tests showed that the full battery can be stretched to 50% beyond its original length, and that the strain is limited by the intrinsic properties of the polymer material. The researchers expect that modifying the polymer or developing a new nanoarchitectured elastomer could further increase the stretchability of the battery. More information: Hongsen Li et al. “An All-Stretchable-Component Sodium-Ion Full Battery.” Advanced Materials. DOI: 10.1002/adma.201700898
CALGARY – Alberta’s Rocky Mountains are once again bursting with visitors in what could be another banner year, but the government is hoping to get more tourists spending in other areas of the province as well.“The Rockies are often the hook to get those international travellers to come,” says Shelley Grollmuss, vice-president of industry development at Travel Alberta.“And then we work very hard with our industry partners to try and build road trips or other itineraries, where they can go into other areas of the province and explore.”It’s all part of the province’s plan to boost tourist spending from the $8.3 billion in 2014 to $10 billion by 2020, and to increase jobs in the industry as it works to further diversify an economy that has been heavily reliant on oil and gas.Last week, Premier Rachel Notley announced $33.5 million in funding for an expansion of the Fort Edmonton historic site as part of the Alberta jobs program.“Our government will expand tourist sites to bring in more visitors from around the world, the rest of Canada, and Alberta,” Notley said.The new Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum in Grande Prairie, Alta., has already seen 100,000 visitors in its first 10 months of operation.The older Royal Tyrrell dinosaur museum in Drumheller, Alta., has already topped 135,000 visitors since the start of April, while it set an attendance record last year with 479,000 visitors from more than 130 countries.Grollmuss says tourist numbers are helped by a low dollar that makes travelling abroad for Canadians more expensive than a few years ago when the loonie was higher.Similarly, the loonie’s fall helps make Canada less expensive and more attractive to international visitors.An increase in direct international flights is also helping, Grollmuss says.Hainan Airlines recently launched a direct flight from Beijing to Calgary at the end June, while WestJet started flying direct to London in May.“We do have more tour operators and online travel agencies globally selling Alberta now than we’ve ever had before,” Grollmuss says.But attendance at national parks in Alberta is making other attractions pale in comparison.Banff saw an eight per cent jump to 3.9 million visitors, Jasper was up five per cent to 2.3 million, and Waterton Lakes rose 16 per cent to 486,000 visitors for the financial year ended in March.Lake Louise at Banff National Park was so busy on the Canada Day long weekend that police temporarily shut down access to the town to everyone but residents and those with reservations at hotels.Dave Kaiser, head of the Alberta Hotel and Lodging Association, says most of province’s tourism industry has been hit hard by the recession, but the resorts are seeing strong results.“You wouldn’t know we’re in the same province,” Kaiser says.He said hotels in Alberta outside the Rockies in the past year have seen a 25 per cent drop in revenue per room, but in the mountain resorts, revenue is actually up 12 per cent.“We just need to find ways to get some of those tourists to not only go to Banff and the mountains, but to get them travelling to other parts of the province as well,” said Kaiser.———Follow @ibickis on Twitter Tourists take in the views from the newly opened Glacier SkyWalk near the Columbia Icefields in Jasper National Park, Alta., Wednesday, May 7, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh Alberta hopes success in Rocky Mountain tourist areas will spread to other areas by Ian Bickis, The Canadian Press Posted Jul 10, 2016 8:00 am MDT Last Updated Jul 10, 2016 at 10:20 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email
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Two upcoming paving projects will result in smoother travel for drivers in the Pictou-New Glasgow area. The Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Public Works is calling for tenders for repaving on Route 256 from the intersection of West Branch Road for 6.5 kilometres to the intersection of the Loganville Road. Also being called is a tender for repaving on Route 347 from the New Glasgow town line for 5.2 kilometres to the intersection of Thorburn Road. “Good roads are vital to the economic life of Nova Scotia,” said Ron Russell, Minister of Transportation and Public Works. “That’s why our department is working so hard to improve our highways.” The Department of Transportation and Public Works’ highways division manages more than 23,000 kilometres of roads in Nova Scotia. It maintains 4,100 bridges and operates seven provincial ferries. Staff provide services from district offices in Bridgewater, Bedford, Truro and Sydney.