Earth Sciences

Overestimated potential – Energy from jet stream: sorry, nope!

Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry found out:
1. The high winds of the upper atmosphere contain less renewable energy than previously assumed
2. Jet stream energy extraction would cause massive climate change.

Picture: Rotary wind turbines could hang like kites in the upper atmosphere where the jet streams blow. This photomontage shows what they might look like. © Lee Miller

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MPI for Chemistry: Determination of city pollution levels from space

Pollution produced by cars and busses in megacities contribute to the damage of the resident´s health. A new method from researchers from the Max Planck Institute of Chemistry, the University of Heidelberg and the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute De Bilt now allows for more accurate measurements of the pollution levels using the satellite instrument OMI, which measures the nitrogen oxides pollution, and a mathematical trick.


Picture: From pollution to emissions – The left graph shows, how nitrogen dioxide is distributed on average over the Middle East for calm. Red indicates high pollution levels, white low. The right graph shows the distribution of nitrogen dioxide around Riyadh for different wind directions and calm (centre). The distinct downwind plumes allow scientists to determine how quickly the pollutant disappears from the atmosphere and thus how large the emitted amounts in Riyadh are. © Science/MPI for Chemistry Continue reading