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 …
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 …
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 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 …
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
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 …
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
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 …
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
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 …
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, …
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 …
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
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
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 …
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
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
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
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
Cheetah

Watch MIT's robo-cheetah leap walls in a CYBORG HUNT for Sarah Connor

Vid Robot builders at MIT have created a cyber-creature that can run and jump over objects without human control. Youtube Video The robot in question, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency-funded Cheetah, is capable of leaping over walls 18 inches tall – more than half its own height – and continuing to run as fast as 22 …
Iain Thomson, 29 May 2015
LLCD laser space broadband

Interplanetary Internet about as useful as flying pigs says Vint Cerf

Boffins that want to see Internet protocols extend to outer space – the so-called “Interplanetary Internet” – need to prove they're offering something useful, according to one of the father-figures of the Earth-bound Internet. Vint Cerf, who has taken an interest in beyond-Earth applications for the Internet protocol stack since …
Verizon

Verizon tags majors to craft SDN future

Verizon has taken the leap into the world of software-defined networking, announcing a strategy and its initial partner list for a multi-year rollout. For now, the partner list for the giant's umpteenth network transformation strategy are Alcatel-Lucent, Nokia Networks, Cisco, Ericsson and Juniper Networks. The company told …
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 …
Fujitsu TR800

Diamonds are forever, Fujitsu Eternus now for VDI

Fujitsu has added a bunch of new variants to its Eternus TR storage arrays, targeting large scale desktop virtualisation environments. The models are the Eternus TR820, TR850 and TR880, with the last in the list claiming the ability to connect 3,500 VMs, which the company says is nearly double the scale of its previous models. …
Team Register, 20 Jan 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

Standby consumes MORE POWER THAN CANADA: IEA

The International Energy Agency (IEA) is worried that the world's addiction to gadgets that sip electricity in standby mode use more power than is necessary or sensible, and wants manufacturers to try harder to cut power consumption. The agency says inefficient “network standby” modes are common: consumers think a device has …
Boeing 787 battery fire

BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff

Battery capacity remains a big issue in devices ranging from phones to electric vehicles – and one of the biggest constraints is the materials used to make electrodes. A paper published at Nature Nanotechnology (abstract here), offers a promising lead for improvements as boffins say they've hit on a way to replace today's anode …
Cloud ONTAP

NetApp offers ONTAP as a cloud for all seasons

NetApp has updated its ONTAP operating system release into what it calls a data fabric spanning private, hybrid, and public clouds, and includes a SW-only Cloud ONTAP edition running in public clouds. NetApp is also offering new services for hybrid clouds. There's an Enterprise Transformation Workshop for Cloud, an Efficiency …
Chris Mellor, 27 Oct 2014
Glorious future of China

China megacorp Tencent parrots Communists' 'Internet Plus' edict

Chinese megacorp Tencent is pushing ahead with an edict from China's Communist Party to improve the country's internet connections by upping its investment in software-defined networking. Tencent is most well known for its WeChat messaging and payments app, which the company says has 500 million active users. In March, China's …
Kat Hall, 20 May 2015
Tesla powerwall

Oz battery bossmen: Fingers will be burned in the Tesla goldrush

Interview If Elon Musk does spark a market shakeup in home power storage, one of the battlegrounds will be between mature and emerging technologies. With that in mind, The Register spoke to Stuart Smith, CEO of Redflow, and Bruce Ebzery, vice president of business development). Yes, Redflow is a battery company, which means it has its …
DSolar's PV concentrator concept

Supercomputer water-cooling comes to solar power

Solar power outfit Airlight Energy has borrowed technology from the world of supercomputers to make its large-scale photovoltaic collectors more efficient, on the way heating water to get a second source of energy. As explained by the IEEE, the Swiss company has created a spin-off called Dsolar to develop its dish-style large- …
Apple's solar array in Maiden, North Carolina

Want to go green like Apple, but don't have billions in the bank?

Going Green: Strategy (Part 1) How much energy is required to power the ever-expanding online world? With data centres the factories of the 21st Century, this may be a conundrum high on the environmentalist’s agenda, but what about those building the new Satanic mills? Last year, Greenpeace estimated that the aggregate electricity demand of the cloud ( …
Rachel Willcox, 17 Apr 2015
New Rackspace datacenter in Crawley, UK

Rackspace in Crawley: This is a local data centre for local people

Rackspace has completed its Crawley data centre in West Sussex, and claims that it is among the most power-efficient in the UK. The new facility is 130,000 sq ft in area, and the site covers 15 acres in all. It is designed for up to 50,000 servers. The amount of power available is initially 6MW across two suites, with plans for …
Tim Anderson, 24 Apr 2015
UNSW's nickel foam electrode

Boffins FOAMING over a Nickel's worth of hydrogen

As a power source, hydrogen has a bunch of problems, but at least one of them – the cost of obtaining the gas – might be closer to a solution. Right now, most commercial quantities of hydrogen are derived from fossil fuels because electrolysis of water into hydrogen is expensive. Boffins from the University of NSW reckon that a …
arrow pointing up

SimpliVity claims fivefold sales boost, hugs Cisco tightly

Sysadmin blog Things are looking up for hyperconverged vendor SimpliVity, which reported record growth in 2014 on the back of a number of strategic wins and a key partnership with Cisco. Simplivity is claiming a nearly 500 per cent increase in sales compared to 2013 and has now passed 400 employees worldwide, all of which makes me wonder what …
Trevor Pott, 20 Jan 2015
Mountain. Pic: Henry Hemming

EMC dives into Iron Mountain's cloudy backup lair

Backup, replication and DR services are being offered to EMC customers by backup bods Iron Mountain, thanks to it hosting Data Domain and Avamar replication targets in its data centres. Iron Mountain is a tape and paper archival storage service based in an old iron mine in Livingston, New York, used for growing mushrooms when …
Chris Mellor, 23 Apr 2015

Alca-Lu cooks up 400 Gbps router interconnect

Increasing data centre interconnect requirements have prompted Alcatel-Lucent to introduce 400 Gbps line cards for its high-end routers. Manish Gulyani, product marketing veep for the company's IP Business, told The Register there are multiple aims with the launch: it eliminates kit that would otherwise be needed to interconnect …

Oz energy company AGL promises to decarbonise by 2050

Australian energy generator AGL has published a new Greenhouse Gas Policy (PDF) in which outlines “a pathway to decarbonisation of its electricity generation by 2050.” The policy means the generator will do the following: Continue to provide the market with safe, reliable, affordable and sustainable energy options Not build, …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Apr 2015
Huawei campus Shenzhen

Operators shackled to GSM, so Huawei ties GSM to LTE

Huawei and Vodafone have run a trial in Spain that demonstrated GSM and LTE transmissions co-existing on the same spectrum. The idea behind Huawei's GL DSS (GSM-LTE dynamic spectrum sharing) is to let operators roll out their shiny new LTE infrastructure without restricting the spectrum available to the (currently) larger …