Today's Good News 20.05.2016

Scientists just set a new world record for solar cell efficiency

A pair of engineers at the University of New South just set a new world record for solar power by converting a whopping 34.5% of direct sunlght to electricity. Rather than trying to make improvements to traditional flat solar panels, Mark Keevers and Martin Green created a 4.3-square-inch four-junction mini-module embedded in a prism. The prism divides sunlight into four rays, amplifying available sunlght and enabling a conversion rate that blows the previous record out of the water.

Portugal powered entirely by renewable energy for four days

An exciting renewable enery feat in Europe shows us just what a sustainable energy future will look like – and that future is not too far away. From May 7 to May 11, Portugal was powered entirely by renewable sources. During the 107 hours of 100 percent renewable energy, the country drew on hydropower, wind power, biofuels, and solar to make this green electricity dream a reality.

Progressive policies played a large role. Feed-in tariffs, or guaranteed prices for renewable producers, and paying host municipalities combined to help make renewable energy cost effective. Further, the government has taken steps like altering grid infrastructure to connect easier to home solar panels.
The Portuguese Renewable Energy said in 2015 a combination of renewable sources provided 48 percent  of the country’s electricity.

Currently, hydropower generates 30 percent of Portugal’s electricity. About 25 percent comes from wind. Biofuels and solar play smaller roles, contributing 6.4 percent and 1.2 percent respectively to the mix. – Christian Science Monitor

Transformative Cell Phone Platform for Disease Diagnosis in Africa

Addis Ababa, May 19 – ANDI, the African Network for Drugs and Diagnostics Innovation, announced today that it has initiated the implementation of an integrated Cell Phone App to boost the diagnosis of neglected diseases at point of care in Africa, in collaboration with the Chinese EASE-Medtrend Biotech.
The project uses an Integrated Mobile Diagnostics Readout App Technology, to attain state-of-the-art results for multiple diseases in less time and less cost. It will by-pass the use of sophisticated and expensive laboratory instruments which are difficult to use in resource-poor settings. The Application is now being optimized to perform different Point of Care and Rapid Diagnostics Tests (RDTs) for diseases that are prevalent in Africa. Field evaluation is scheduled to start in Ghana, Ethiopia and Nigeria within the next two months.

Raise your hat as important Stern comes home

Irma Stern’s captivating 1943 portrait, Portrait of Freda Feldman in Basuto Hat, is back in South Africa. The work is being offered at Strauss & Co’s Johannesburg auction on 23 May 2016. It is expected to fetch between R5 000 000 and R7 000 000. The portrait is accompanied by the original Basotho hat (or mokorotlo) worn by the sitter. – South African Art Times

Yiddish humour

A man called his mother in Florida . "Mom, how are you?"
"Not too good," said the mother. "I've been very weak."
The son said, "Why are you so weak?"
She said, "Because I haven't eaten in 38 days."
The son said, "That's terrible. Why haven't you eaten in 38 days?"
The mother answered, "Because, I didn't want my mouth to be full in case you should call.” 

Green Energy
Solar Energy
Wind Power
Disease Diagnosis
Irma Stern
Freda Feldman
Yiddish Humour
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