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Ohio State Energy in the News

Why we could have more toxic blooms in our warming world

Michigan Public Radio

August 23, 2017

There’s a green bloom of cyanobacteria on Lake Erie again. People who run water utilities and scientists are watching the bloom because the cyanobacteria can produce toxins called microcystins that are dangerous for people and pets. It's what made Toledo’s drinking water unsafe to drink in 2014.

Featured expert: Chris Winslow, director of Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Laboratory

Ohio State’s energy privatizer to spend almost $7M in first batch of capital improvements

Business First

August 23, 2017

The companies managing Ohio State University’s energy assets for the next five decades will spend $6.8 million this year on major projects.

Ohio State Energy Partners – the LLC created by French company Engie and partner Axium Infrastructure – plans to spend the money on four projects, pending OSU board of trustees approval this week.

The temps are mild, but the track is loose as Speed Week begins at the Bonneville Salt Flats

Salt Lake Tribune

August 15, 2017

The drivers and crews of most of the 440 vehicles that made their way from all over the world to this glistening white expanse of salt enjoyed cooler than normal temperatures Monday during the third day of the 69th annual Speed Week.

… One of the most interesting cars is the Buckeye Bullet Venturi VBB-3, an Ohio State University creation that holds the record of 341.40 miles per hour for all electric vehicles.

The streamliner is capable of 3,000 horsepower. The slim 28-foot long vehicle utilizes two electric motors, 3,400 pounds of lithium ion nanosphasphate battery cells and over three miles of wiring.

Watchdog Report: Adjustable pricing, tripled rates, next step in electric deregulation

Press & Sun-Bulletin

August 11, 2017

If you’re still having trouble figuring how to lower your electric bill by shopping for a supplier, just wait until the next advance in utility deregulation comes to your home.

They’re called ‘smart meters,’ and they could upend the way you live, providing a jolt to how a homeowner uses electricity and natural gas.

Featured expert: Noah C. Dormady, professor of public affairs

Columbus 2020 and the Rise of Smaller Smart Cities

Machine Design

August 12, 2017

Forget New York and Los Angeles—it's really the small to midsize metro areas like Columbus, Ohio, that are successfully implementing smart-city programs. ... There are 60 colleges and universities that cater to the Columbus region and in particular, Ohio State University is a main location for innovating applied research for product design, technology commerce, and manufacturing. Its program, the Center for Design and Manufacturing Excellence, works directly with manufacturers to identify and execute growth strategies.

Ohio State plans new $24M food production complex

Business First

August 9, 2017

With all the new development in the central part of the Ohio State University going on, it’s easy to forget that west campus is still an agriculture-dominated expanse. Well, at Ohio State, new construction knows no bounds, and west campus is getting its dirt disturbed, too. Ohio State plans to build a new $24 million food production complex geared toward traditional and urban food security.

OSU president impressed with work of students at Stone Lab


August 1, 2017

Ohio State University President Michael V. Drake toured the school's Stone Lab research facility Tuesday in Put-in-Bay.

"It's really impactful, really important," he said of the work.

For more than a century, the facility has focused on freshwater biology research, science education and outreach.

Project tests whether wetlands can reduce Buckeye Lake algae

The Columbus Dispatch

July 30, 2017

A wetlands research site has joined the scene at Buckeye Lake, hosting a long-term experiment that might someday help cleanse the lake of the blue-green algae blooms that foul the water each summer.

It could take as long as a decade before any conclusions can be drawn, but wetlands expert William Mitsch and a multi-university team of researchers from Ohio State University, Kenyon College and other institutions think they are on to something with the “wetlaculture” project they are conducting in a field in Buckeye Lake village. Wetlaculture combines wetlands and agriculture.

Featured expert: William Mitsch, environmental science professor emeritus

Climate change affects people’s health, students and health officials warn

The Columbus Dispatch

July 27, 2017

A small gathering of students and local health officials on Wednesday raised concerns about Franklin County’s air quality, Trump’s environmental regulation rollbacks and the future of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Defend Our Future, a nonpartisan group that works with millennials to campaign for climate change, had a news conference in Chadwick Arboretum at Ohio State University. Speakers at the event urged students to fight for environmental regulations because they affect public health.

Antartica's Larsen C Ice Shelf Breaks Off

WOSU All Sides

July 18, 2017

The collapse of Antarctica's Larsen C ice shelf could be the beginning of a great threat to Antarctica and the rest of the world. The break-off could be followed by many others, resulting in warmer temperatures in the Antarctic and possibly raising sea level around the world.

Featured expert: Ian Howat, glaciologist, professor and investigator of glacier dynamics at the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center

Researchers using coal ash, scrubber byproducts for reclamation

S&P Global Market Intelligence

July 18, 2017

Researchers are using some of the waste byproducts of coal plants to reclaim old abandoned mine land sites.

"People blame coal for being a part of the problem, but the work we're doing showcases how coal can be a part of the solution," Tarunjit Butalia, an associate professor at Ohio State University, told S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Featured expert: Tarunjit Butalia, associate professor, civil, environmental and geodetic engineering

Cleaning With Coal: Ohio State Professor Reclaims Abandoned Strip Mines


July 13, 2017

Though America's coal industry continues to shrink, it's left its mark on earth: Abandoned strip mines, flattened by explosions and the desperate search for fuel.

A steep cliff looms in the distance over one such mine, near an American Electric Power plant just north of Zanesville. This location is just one of many littering the rural landscape of eastern Ohio.

Featured expert: Tarunjit Butalia, professor of engineering

Warnings from Antarctica

The New York Times

July 12, 2017

As the Trump administration dismantles the federal government’s efforts to respond to global warming, the natural world has come calling with a reminder: An iceberg the size of Delaware broke off Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf in recent days, yet another indication of the rapid change now occurring on the world’s iciest continent.

Featured expert: John Mercer, deceased glaciologist who published a paper about climate change in Nature in 1978

ALSO: Miami Herald: ‘Maps will need to be redrawn’: One of the largest icebergs ever recorded breaks free

Columbus under construction to become America's first 'smart city'

Fox News

July 10, 2017

Now, with $40 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation and another $10 million from Vulcan Inc., a company founded by Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen, Columbus — “The Crossroads of Ohio” — is poised to become the blueprint for the future of urban planning.

Featured expert: Carla Bailo, assistant vice president of mobility research and business development

OSU, AEP partnership working to reclaim old mining land

Zanesville Times Recorder

June 27, 2017

Ohio State University President Dr. Michael Drake got a first-hand look Monday at a partnership that is working to reclaim an old surface land mine.

OSU is partnering with American Electric Power on the reclamation project taking place behind the Conesville power plant. Officials touted it not just for its environmental impact, but also its cost effectiveness.

OSU Research Associate Professor Dr. Tarunjit Butalia, from the school's Department of Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering, and AEP geologist John Massey-Norton, both of whom have been integral in the project, spoke to Drake about what they are working to accomplish.

Cities vie to become hubs of self-driving technology

USA Today

June 26, 2017

Columbus leaders are tickled their city was chosen for $50 million in federal and private funding over seven other finalists. Key to Columbus’ win was the buy-in of the city’s major employers, who have come to view their home city’s preparation for autonomous vehicles as part of the companies’ preparation for profits in the next century.

It combined investments from top local companies, the state of Ohio and Ohio State University to pool more than $400 million for autonomous and electric vehicles.

Cars of the future will drive themselves, and talk to one another

The Columbus Dispatch

June 23, 2017

As Michael Stevens guided his 16-year-old son, Ted, through a driving lesson, he wondered if his son would ever have the same opportunity.

“I said, ‘You realize you probably won’t be doing this for your child,’” said Stevens, chief innovation officer for Smart Columbus.

That’s because Stevens, 45, isn’t sure automobiles will be used in the same way when his son is his age.

Featured expert: Giorgio Rizzoni, chairman of Ohio State University’s Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department and head of its Center for Automotive Research.

1 million more people? Columbus on verge of growth spurt

The Columbus Dispatch

June 23, 2017

Flying cars never took off. Humans haven’t colonized the moon. Hoverboards that fly high in the air still haven’t materialized outside the big screen.

We’ll forgive the prognosticators of the past for missing the mark. Predicting the future is tricky business.

But as central Ohio lights the fuse for a population explosion, it’s important to anticipate the effects of that growth.

Featured experts: Ned Hill, professor of public affairs, David Staley, professor of history, and Jason Reece, professor of city and regional planning and senior associate director, Kirwan Institute

DOE awards millions in energy research grants

E&E News

June 23, 2017

The Department of Energy has awarded millions of dollars to universities and national laboratories for nuclear energy research.

…Carol Smidts, director of Ohio State's nuclear engineering program, said she was excited to learn of the grant for more than $1.5 million. About $250,000 will be used to support research in advanced sensor development, while about $184,000 will be used to acquire radiation shielding material for the nuclear reactor on campus, she said.

Unprecedented ice melt in Antarctica (Video)

Global News Canada

June 21, 2017

One of the coldest regions on earth is warming at an alarming rate. The great ice shelves of Western Antarctica are melting. As Eric Sorensen reports, warmer ocean currents below and air above are shrinking Antarctica and raising concerns that the world’s sea levels will rise even faster than expected.

Featured expert: David Bromwich, professor of geography

ALSO: CBC: Antarctic ice melt tied to El Nino warming