Articles about Efficiency

Professor Martin Green, UNSW

Solar sandwich cooks at 40 per cent efficiency

Australian solar trailblazer Professor Martin Green's group at the University of New South Wales is claiming a world record in solar efficiency, and this time it's not the usual half-per cent incremental improvement. The Australia-US Institute for Advanced Photovoltaics that Green directs says its combination of off-the-shelf …

Understanding the network energy efficiency challenge

At the end of last week, the GreenTouch telco energy-efficiency consortium told a presumably-glittering event in New York that its five-year project to design more energy-efficient telecommunications has been a success. In fact, the group said, it reckons that if adopted, its approaches could improve mobile network efficiency by …
Merlin Data Center Power Room

Microsoft diverts research funds to data centre efficiency studies

Microsoft has handed out four grants of $US40,000 apiece to university researchers looking into various ways to make data centres more energy-efficient. Redmond, like many large vendors, regularly funds academic research. This year, Microsoft has expanded the efforts it usually conducts through the Software Engineering …
Simon Sharwood, 15 May 2014

AMD details aggressive power-efficiency goal: 25X boost by 2020

Deep Tech AMD has announced an ambitious 2020 goal of a 25-times improvement of the power efficiency of its APUs, the company's term for accelerated processing units – on-die mashups of CPU, GPU, video-accelerator, or any other types of cores. Although AMD has committed itself to that goal, it won't be an easy one to achieve. Efficiency …
Rik Myslewski, 20 Jun 2014
A Dyson vacuum cleaner

Brit inventor Dyson challenges EU ruling on his hoover's energy efficiency ratings

Brit inventor James Dyson is challenging the EU's labelling policy for hoovers in court, claiming that it doesn't do his vacuum cleaners justice. Dyson said that the EU's energy efficiency rating system was based on dust-free lab conditions that were completely different to the way that hoovers performed in the home. The firm is …
Candle in the dark

Flamewars in SPAAACE: cooler fires hint at energy efficiency

Video A fire on the International Space Station (ISS) – intentional of course – has provided hints at the kinds of research needed to make engines on Earth cleaner and more fuel efficient. Surprisingly, the experiments turned up flames burning at lower temperatures than thought possible. In the research, astronauts set fire to large …
The Register breaking news

Boffins tout solar efficiency boost

A joint project between Sydney University and Germany’s Helmholtz Centre for Materials and Energy claims to offer a low-cost boost to solar cell efficiency. The efficiency question for solar cell developers is how to capture more energy from more photons, since “wasted” photons merely get turned into heat. That’s harder than it …
2001: A Space Odyssey

TOP500 Supers make boffins more prolific

A comparative analysis of supercomputer ownership by US universities seems to suggest that TOP500-class iron gives institutions a quantifiable edge in physics, chemistry, civil engineering and evolutionary biology. In the kind of rational decision-making that will upset HPC sales teams, the Clemson University research is …
The Eurora supercomputer built by Eurotech and Nvidia

Supercomputer efficiency jumps, but nowhere near exascale needs

It is not precisely the kind of leap that the supercomputer industry needs to reach exascale performance by the end of the decade, but more powerful GPU and x86 coprocessors are enabling more energy-efficient machines, at least according to the latest Green500 rankings. The Green500 list comes out two or three times a year, …
graph up

Storage industry Hulks up with green efficiency ratings

SNIA Europe The Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) has unveiled standardised storage product power efficiency ratings at its SNIA Europe event. The Emerald Power Efficiency Measurement Specification was developed under the Green Storage Initiative (GSI) by more than 25 SNIA member companies to provide a vendor-neutral power …
Chris Mellor, 04 Nov 2011
The Register breaking news

Whitehall's ball-breaking efficiency tsar quits for a quiet life in Oz

A high-flying Australian apparatchik who was parachuted in to save the coalition government's crisis-hit Universal Credit benefits system has quit the British civil service. David Pitchford, head of the Major Projects Authority, had a formidable reputation as a Whitehall fixer-upper, tasked with troubleshooting big ticket …
Jasper Hamill, 04 Jul 2013
"Typical E-scrapping dismantling operation. 100,000 such migrant workers labor in Guiyu breaking down imported computers in hundreds of small operations like this one in a four village area surrounding the Lianjiang River."

New racks, cables for aging and neglected data centres

Enterprises are shuttering their smaller data centres, but are opting to shift to larger upgraded facilities rather than shifting the whole shebang to the cloud. 451 Research’s Voice of the Enterprise: Datacenters survey found that in Q2 a whacking 87 per cent of data centre operators in Europe and North America are maintaining …
Joe Fay, 02 Jul 2015
Photograph of the killer shrimp. Pic: Defra

Prawn cocktail offers hot new way to make solar cells

Wrap your laughing gear around this: researchers from Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) have discovered that materials from shrimp/prawns can replace expensive elements in solar cells. The boffins working on nano-structured solar cells found that chitin and chitosan can make the quantum dots that are coated onto structures …
Huawei HQ

Check out our HOT AIR INTERFACE for 5G – Huawei

Jockeying for position in the yet-to-be-real 5G market continues, with Huawei announcing that it's going to demo a new air interface at Mobile World Congress in March. The Chinese giant will be showing off techniques it calls Sparse Code Multiple Access (SCMA) and Filtered-Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (F-OFDM). In …
Selection of Australian banknotes

Australian Research Council funds clean tech

Technology research projects have won a decent slice of the latest round of Australian Research Council industry-linked funding – around AU$15.5 million of the $86 million total, by The Register's reckoning*. The total $86.9 million of government funding announced by education minister Chris Pyne will be overmatched by nearly …
DRagon

Permabit OEM deal de-stealths Chinese all-flash array maker

Permabit says it has a new Albireo dedupe software OEM, and in so doing has revealed a brand new all-flash array vendor, this one from China. Sihua Technologies is an iCDN content delivery and NeuStor cloud storage product provider to the Chinese market. It is based in Shanghai and Hangzhou, with an office in Cupertino. Sihua …
Chris Mellor, 02 Apr 2015
management strategy1

Console makers game the EU Commission to avoid energy-use law

Games console manufacturers have agreed a deal with the European Commission that lets them off the hook for meaningful rules on energy efficiency. Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony have persuaded the Commish not to include their products in the EcoDesign Directive and to instead rely on a voluntary agreement. Although the Commission …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Apr 2015

The hyper-collapsed data centre: Vapor IO's all-in-one info chamber

Hyper-modular data centre Vapor IO exited stealth mode recently to publicly push its vision for the hyper-collapsed data centre. The start-up’s mission is to improve management of data centres while delivering greater intelligence at the network edge. So what is involved in Vapor IO’s vision of the hyper-collapsed data centre …
smokestack

Amazon, eBay and Oracle in dirty power SHAME

Greenpeace has released a report naming the tech companies who make the best (and worst) use of renewable energy. The 2015 Clicking Green report (PDF) named which companies were relying heavily on renewable resources and which were powering their datacenters with coal and other non-renewable materials. The report grades …
Shaun Nichols, 13 May 2015
What Facebook's Fort Worth DC will look like

Facebook vows to blow EVEN HARDER

It seems Facebook's experience with wind power has been good enough for the personalised ads giant to come back for more. The company's west region director of data centre operations Ken Patchett announced that Facebook's next data centre will land in Fort Worth, Texas, and will mimic its Iowa bit-barn by using 100 per cent …
Handshake

Huawei and Vodafone saunter to bed together, making eyes at big biz

Vodafone and Huawei have signed a memorandum of understanding to say that they are going to work on fixed and mobile connectivity bonding technology for new products, amongst other enterprise-friendly things. Those things also include working on better in-building coverage solutions, the development of new machine-to-machine …
Simon Rockman, 16 Jun 2015
globalisation

Efficiency and Reform Group 'has saved over £3bn'

The Efficiency and Reform Group (ERG) has helped to save government £3bn-£4bn over the past few months, its lead official has told a group of MPs. Ian Watmore, the government's chief operating officer, was responding to questions at parliament's public accounts committee hearing on the efficiency landscape. He said that, while …

Driverless cars banished to fake Michigan 'town' until they learn to read

Opened on Monday, the University of Michigan's Mcity is the world's first controlled environment to test driverless cars, designed and developed by the university's "Mobility Transformation Center" (MTC) along with the Michigan Department of Transportation. The driverless utopia is a 32-acre simulated urban/suburban …
Nutanix_XCP

Nutanix hyper-converges upwards with bells, whistles and KVM

Comment In the name of server and storage efficiency, Nutanix has added KVM hypervisor support, erasure coding and new management to its hyper-converged systems, and promised VVOL-type integration, container and file-serving support. The aim is evidently to increase scale-out X86 server node, storage and admin efficiency, and top-level …
Chris Mellor, 10 Jun 2015
The Register breaking news

Germans increase office efficiency with 'cloud ceiling'

So you thought you had deployed every form of office technology that could possibly increase the productivity of your company's cripplingly expensive salaried employees? You were wrong. Remorseless German boffins have discovered a way to make office workers still more efficient using - quite literally in this case - cloud …
Lewis Page, 04 Jan 2012
ABS population density calculated on the national grid

Australian government may take leave of its census

Updated Australia's government is considering radically restructuring its national census. The exercise, which cost $AU440 million in 2011, is under the microscope as the government assembles its 2015 budget. Fairfax reports that the census could be delayed or replaced with a smaller survey. The Australian is less certain of the census …
Samsung monitor adds wireless charging

Samsung emits mobe charging monitor. For your 'active lifestyle'

Samsung's latest SE370 monitor will have a wireless charging pad built into its plinth. This aims to de-clutter office drones' desks, or at least provide more space for other forms of clutter. The pad uses the Qi wireless charging standard, and while Samsung swings both ways as a member of both the Wireless Power Consortium ( …
Simon Rockman, 27 Jul 2015
Ransom note saying "Pay Up" in blackmail type

Yay for Tor! It's given us RANSOMWARE-as-a-service

Threat Research head Jim Walter says a virus writer has created a ransomware-as-a-service offering which allows luddite criminals to fleece users. Walter discovered the Tox ransomware on an eponymously named Tor hidden service noting the author required a 30 percent cut of paid Bitcoin ransoms. He says Tox is one of the few …
Darren Pauli, 29 May 2015
NGMN 5G Vision

Carriers want 5G to do everything, for anything, anywhere

MWC2015 The Next Generation Mobile Networks (NGMN) carriers' club has sorted out its ideas of what 5G's future, and set forth a blueprint of its preferred vision of a post-4G world. The 5G world is going to have to get cracking, though: the roadmap, with contributions from luminaries like AT&T, BT, China Mobile, DoCoMo, SingTel, …
racks of Fujistu lettuce

Microsoft, Fujitsu team in Internet of Lettuce effort

A nearly two-year-old Fujitsu project to apply sensors and cloud computing to growing low-potassium vegetables has attracted the attention of Microsoft. The two companies have used what's probably the least-leafy venue imaginable, Hannover Messe, to announce a tie-up in which Windows 8.1 Pro running on Fujitsu devices, Fujitsu's …

UK's Crown Commercial Service creams off £72m from frameworks

Government procurement body Crown Commercial Services had a bumper year in 2014/15, increasing its slice of commission and fees from government frameworks by 50 per cent to a cool £72m. During that period the body doubled its staff costs to £44.4m, increased full-time headcount from 430 to 674, and ran a surplus of £2m, which …
Kat Hall, 22 Jul 2015
E-ink parking sign in Sydney

Sydney adopts 'world's first' e-ink parking signs

The Australian city of Sydney has adopted e-ink-equipped parking signs. Slovenian vendor Visionect says the State of New South Wales' Road and Maritime Services (RMS) agency has adopted its digital signage to ease the chore of changing signs to reflect coming events. As Vulture South well knows, Sydney's sclerotic roads …
Simon Sharwood, 26 Jul 2015
Pawlowski_FlashRay_video

FlashRay bang, wallop: NetApp bigwigs play musical chairs

El Reg has learned that NetApp's leadership of its all-flash array project FlashRay is changing: the original engineering head is no longer involved, and the veep for flash storage is absent. NetApp engineering veteran and SVP Brian 'Beepy' Pawlowski founded the FlashRay and Mars OS effort as an internal startup inside NetApp. …
Chris Mellor, 24 Feb 2015

New antenna supports all three wireless charging standards

A new antenna design aims to solve the two major problems with wireless charging: the mess of standards and the limitations of transmitting power by radio. The antenna, built by Chicago company NuCurrent, can support the wireless charging standards of Qi, the Power Matters Association (PMA) and the Association for Wireless Power …
Simon Rockman, 28 Apr 2015
Don Draper is Sad

Microsoft to offload display ads biz to ... hang on, AOL?

Microsoft has retreated from its online display ads business having struck a deal with AOL. Under the plans, announced on Monday, Redmond will hand off ads sales and management on several of its prime online properties to AOL. Fnancial terms of the agreement were not disclosed. AOL will take over ads for such sites as MSN …
Neil McAllister, 30 Jun 2015
willy wonka oompa loompa

Peak Google? Chocolate Factory cuts costs amid dwindling growth

Google is curbing staff recruitment and introducing a number of penny-pinching efficiency practices to try and gets its profit growth back on track, according to reports. A number of recruiters, venture capitalists and employees told the Wall Street Journal the Chocolate Factory is casting an increasingly critical eye over its …
Kat Hall, 14 Jul 2015
Wireless charging system gives 10kW with no RF

Magnet-wobble wireless charging system dishes out a respectable 10 kW

Canadian wireless power company Elix has announced a system which can generate and transfer 10 kW using magneto-dynamic coupling. It’s big, heavy and noisy, so is aimed at trucks and buses rather than small cars, and is certainly not suitable for desktop gadget charging. Elix claims its target markets are transportation, …
Simon Rockman, 31 Jul 2015

Is that a FAT PIPE or are you just pleased to stream me? TERABIT fibre tested

Proximus and Huawei have successfully trialled a super-channel optical signal, flinging out information at up to one terabit per second (Tbps). Tech lothario Huawei shacked up with Belgian box-wrecker Proximus back in January. The pairing has now produced a single super-channel optical transport network (OTN) card with a …
Dragon

NOD32 AV remote root wormable hack turns corporate fleets to meat

Google Project Zero bod Tavis Ormandy has disclosed a "trivial" means of remotely hack the ESET NOD32 antivirus platform. Ormandy's finding prompted the Slovak company to rush a patch a day before his disclosure overnight. The remote-root exploit is potentially wormable and, he said, of practical value to criminals. "Any …
Darren Pauli, 25 Jun 2015
Power lines

Microsoft gets data centres powered up for big UPS turn-off

The problem with data centres is that you have to plug them in. Or to put it another way, the problem with data centres is that they draw their power from a national grid and this ultimately narrows the cost efficiency structure under which they can operate. Conspicuously creaky and ageing grid networks in (even) advanced first- …
Blood image

Ericsson unplugs 2,200 more staff

Ericsson's move to focus on software is to hit another 2,200 jobs in Sweden, the telco vendor has announced. The cuts focus on roles in R&D and supply, the company's statement says, but admin and sales roles will also be affected, along with external consultants. The vendor says R&D remains important, but reducing the number of …
management big_data4

Google gets AGILE to increase IaaS cloud efficiency

USENIX Google and North Caroline State University researchers have worked out how to instrument cloud infrastructure to the point where they can predict future demand 68% per cent better than previously, giving other cloud providers a primer for how to get the most out of their IT gear. The system was outlined in an academic paper …
Jack Clark, 26 Jun 2013
Tesla Roadster

Tesla parades sleek model body and fab batt at Roadster fans

Elon Musk's Earth-bound transport company has upgraded its two-seater Roadster sports car design with a better battery – and a new body that will increase the range of the flash motors by up to 50 per cent, apparently. "Battery technology has continued a steady improvement in recent years, as has our experience in optimizing …
Iain Thomson, 26 Dec 2014
BT Openreach van

'Tough' UK public sector blamed in BT sales hiccup

Sales dropped 2 per cent to £17.85bn for telco giant BT's full-year results announced today, while profits increased 12 per cent to £3.17bn compared with the previous year. The company primarily blamed its drop in sales on the foreign exchange market, while attributing the profit boost to an efficiency and cost-cutting programme …
Kat Hall, 07 May 2015
Google I/O 2015

Thar she blows! Actual DEV TOOLS spotted at Google's dev event

Google I/O For a developer event, this year's Google I/O conference in San Francisco sure spent a lot of time focusing on such consumer-oriented toys as personal assistants, photo apps, and budget VR. But there were actually a few legitimate developer tools on display, too. Google senior director Jason Titus was given just a few minutes to …
Neil McAllister, 29 May 2015
Crypto fingers

Amazon just wrote a TLS crypto library in only 6,000 lines of C code

Amazon Web Services has released a new, open source library that implements TLS encryption – the standard behind the secure HTTPS web protocol – using far less code than the prevailing OpenSSL library. Dubbed s2n for "signal to noise," the new library comprises just over 6,000 lines of C code. By comparison, OpenSSL consists of …
Neil McAllister, 01 Jul 2015
fat

The all-flash market will grotesquely distend in five years, says Gartner

Gartner thinks the all-flash array market will expand at a 37 per cent compound annual growth rate, embiggening from $1.43bn in 2014 to about $7bn by 2019. Storage notes from analyst haus Stifel Nicolaus' MD, Aaron Rakers, reveal that and other interesting predictions: Gartner thinks no data centres use only all-flash arrays …
Chris Mellor, 30 Jun 2015
The Register breaking news

Biological chips go analog to boost efficiency

MIT boffins have figured out how to create synthetic analog organic circuits that can perform useful tasks without needing the sophistication that digital methods demand, which could lead to more efficient gloopy circuits and even more precise drug manufacture. The advance, which could create technology for carefully managing …
Jack Clark, 15 May 2013
hacker

NSPCC: Two nonces nailed by cops every day

Two years on from the launch of David Cameron's internet crackdown in Blighty, the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) reckons two offenders are convicted every day for possessing child-abuse images. "This is an alarming study and just a fragment of the hundreds of other similar convictions …
Cellular antenna. Source: Vxla/Flickr

WAM, bam, thank you QAM

CES 2015 Startup MagnaCom is using CES to pitch a technology it reckons offers wireless comms an attractive combination of better spectral efficiency and higher capacity. Those claims are based on what the company calls WAM, which it's pitching as a possible replacement for the ubiquitous QAM-based modulation. QAM is a standard …