Fuel Technology - Transportation Innovations

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Energy Needs for Transportation
Episode 20 of The Science of Energy
Transportation is an enormous part of our global total energy consumption. From planes to trains to automobiles, learn how scientists are working to make popular modes of transportation as fuel-efficient as possible. Also, explore the topic of electric cars and whether or not they're truly more efficient than gas-powered ones.
Electric Energy
Study stored electric potential energy in fuels such as gasoline, where the molecular bonds represent an enormous amount of energy ready to be released. Also look at a ubiquitous electronic component called the capacitor, which stores an electric charge, and discover that all electric fields represent stored energy.
Fossil Fuels: Coal, Oil, and Natural Gas
Coal, oil, and natural gas power the vast majority of electrical generating plants in use today. Learn how fossil fuels are extracted from the earth and how new technologies such as longwall mining and fracking have revolutionized the industry. Also examine some of the environmental drawbacks of these endeavors.
The Science of Energy - Resources and Power Explained
Energy is, without a doubt, the very foundation of the universe. It's the engine that powers life and fuels the evolution of human civilization. Yet for all its importance, what energy really is and how it works remains a mystery to most non-scientists. For example:
  • Where does most of…
Fuels and Explosives
Episode 16 of The Nature of Matter
Study the different ways that stored chemical energy is released in substances such as gasoline, coal, natural gas, nitroglycerine, and TNT. Learn the difference between detonation, which is what high explosives do, and deflagration, which happens to the fuel in an internal combustion engine.
Green Matters: Bio Fuels
What do animal dung in Israel and leftover cooking oils in North America have in common? Both are being used as bio fuels for powering industrial equipment and motor vehicles. Combine this with efforts to process coconut oil from Uganda and soy from Argentina and you have the hopeful beginnings…
Solar Power – An Alternative Energy Source
Part of the Series: Show Me Science Series - Advanced
Alternative energy sources are being researched and developed to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Fluctuating costs of oil, coal and natural gas, along with their possible negative effects on the environment, has made energy sources such as wind and solar more cost-competitive with fossil fuels. More energy strikes the Earth…
Underwater Robots That Hover and Glide
Episode 16 of Robotics Series
Some of the most exciting robots on the planet are found underwater. Here, learn how today's roboticists have developed unique solutions to creating autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs), like Wave Glider, that have overcome critical challenges involving sensors, power supply, and design to do things like circumnavigate the globe or travel…
Energy: Transforming Renewable Resources - Photovoltaics
Part of the Series: Show Me Science Series - Advanced
Learning to incorporate a variety of eco-friendly energy sources into our businesses and homes will make Earth a better place to live. This program explores photovoltaics, the design behind wind turbine technology and the creative processes behind vehicles in the American Solar Car Race. Zero energy houses of the future…
Aeronautics – The Science of Flight
Strength and stability are important factors in airplane or space vehicle design. Engineers create vehicles that are strong enough to fly Effectively and efficiently by using specific materials and structures that are lightweight and durable. Important decisions are made regarding the materials that are used to make the fuselage, wings,…
Self-Driving Vehicles
Episode 14 of Robotics Series
Lane changes, off-roading, irregular traffic patterns--how do robotic cars handle it all? Find out in this lecture on the trade-offs (especially between speed and safety) involved in creating self-driving vehicles. Peer into the future of how you're likely to get from place to place, perhaps without having to do a…
Space Science - Everyday Astronauts
Part of the Series: Show Me Science Series - Advanced
With the retirement of NASA's space shuttle fleet in 2011, the role of getting people, satellites and other instruments into space falls to private companies. As of June 2011, there have been only 523 people to reach the 100 kilometer mark (considered human spaceflight), and only 24 have traveled beyond…