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Daily Digest 4/14 - Flowing Water Over Graphene Generates Electricity, The New Wild West

Monday, April 14, 2014, 10:52 AM

Economy

Financial Stability (Thomas C.)

Citigroup chief economist Willem Buiter: “Monetary policy works with asset prices. By boosting equities, raising bond prices, weakening the currency and that’s exactly how it has happened. Not very effectively, because we have poor man’s monetary policy. Which is what unconventional monetary policy is. But it’s all we have. I would have preferred to see some additional measures on the fiscal side, which could have mitigated some of the income distributional consequences…”

2014 Could Be A Yawner For Gold And Silver; Be Prepared For A Weekend Surprise (Taki T.)

Syria is not known as an oil-producing nation. True. That is not the threat to the US. What is a threat is the strategic location of a Syrian port used as an integral part for sending Russian natural gas to Europe. A successful pipeline that is not run by the US is a huge concern, especially because the natural gas coming from Russia will not use the petrodollar. Without the petrodollar standard, the US cannot export its inflationary fiat to the rest of the world.

London hedge fund exec in $72,000 fare ‘dodge’ (June C.)

The fare dodger exploited this loophole. There are no ticket barriers at Stonegate station so the fare-dodger jumped on a train which ended up in London Bridge. From there he crossed over to service that took him to Cannon Street and exited this station by tapping out, incurring the £7.20 charge.

A spokesperson for Southeastern, the train company running the service from Stonegate, told CNBC that it believed the man had been doing the scam for five years, since 2008 until the end of last year.

'Modest hope' to slow warming, but no 'free lunch,' U.N. warns (jdargis)

No direct price tag was attached to that scenario, but Edenhofer said it would require "substantial investments," and more delays just drive up the expected cost. The impact could amount to shaving the projected average growth of the global economy by six-hundredths of a percentage point -- from about 2% per year to 1.94% -- over the coming century. The total global economy was about $72 trillion in 2012, according to World Bank figures.

"We are clearly arguing that achieving these goals is a huge technological and institutional challenge. We are not saying this is a free lunch," Edenhofer told reporters from Berlin, where the final document was approved over the weekend.

U.N. Climate Change Report Says Worst Scenarios Can Still Be Avoided (jdargis)

Various studies show that the earth has already warmed by about 0.8 degree Celsius since 1900. In 2010, about 200 governments agreed to reduce emissions to ensure that global temperatures didn't rise by more than two degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels.

Flowing salt water over graphene generates electricity (jdargis)

What’s the mechanism behind this? The scientists looked at the charge distribution on the sides of the droplet when it was sitting still on graphene, as well as when it was moving. When the droplet was static, the charge redistributed symmetrically on both sides, leaving a net potential difference of zero between them.

Frontcountry: The New Wild West (jdargis)

Between 2006 and 2013, photographer Lucas Foglia traveled throughout rural Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, and Wyoming.

His new book Frontcountry, from Nazarelli Press, finds people living in a boom cycle as a result of mining, one that's producing a new modern take on the Wild West.

Eastern Europe has Nothing on Asian Energy Markets (James B.)

Economic development in the Eurozone is gaining ground, though any recovery there will be tepid. With North America relying less on foreign imports, energy investors should be following shifting demand dynamics to Asian economies. U.S. and European policymakers have been focused on energy security in the Eurozone as Russian energy company Gazprom rattles its sabers at a Ukrainian government tilting strongly toward the European Union.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 4/11/14

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

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TBTF Bond Firms - Add 'em to the List

re saxplayer's "Trillion-Dollar Firms Dominating Bonds Prompting Probes"  TBTF Bond Firms - Add 'em to the List.

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Graphene News

Some time ago in one of Jim Rogers's interviews, he was asked: "If there is ONE product or company you would invest in, which would it be?"  Jim said: "Buy graphene and tuck it away for the future."

He also stated:  I highly recommend MGPHF, Mason Graphics.

Here is a recent article about graphene in the NY Times.  Just sharing.    Enjoy.  Ken

 

Bend It, Charge It, Dunk It: Graphene, the Material of Tomorrow

Graphene transistors visible on a piece of flexible plastic. Graphene is not only the hardest material in the world, but also one of the most pliable.Nicholas PetroneGraphene transistors visible on a piece of flexible plastic. Graphene is not only the hardest material in the world, but also one of the most pliable.

I just want to say one word to you. Just one word.

No, fans of “The Graduate,” the word isn’t “plastics.”

It’s “graphene.”

Graphene is the strongest, thinnest material known to exist. A form of carbon, it can conduct electricity and heat better than anything else. And get ready for this: It is not only the hardest material in the world, but also one of the most pliable.

Only a single atom thick, it has been called the wonder material.

Graphene could change the electronics industry, ushering in flexible devices, supercharged quantum computers, electronic clothing and computers that can interface with the cells in your body.

While the material was discovered a decade ago, it started to gain attention in 2010 when two physicists at the University of Manchester were awarded the Nobel Prize for their experiments with it. More recently, researchers have zeroed in on how to commercially produce graphene.

The American Chemical Society said in 2012 that graphene was discovered to be 200 times stronger than steel and so thin that a single ounce of it could cover 28 football fields. Chinese scientists have created a graphene aerogel, an ultralight material derived from a gel, that is one-seventh the weight of air. A cubic inch of the material could balance on one blade of grass.

“Graphene is one of the few materials in the world that is transparent, conductive and flexible — all at the same time,” saidDr. Aravind Vijayaraghavan, a lecturer at the University of Manchester. “All of these properties together are extremely rare to find in one material.”

So what do you do with graphene? Physicists and researchers say that we will soon be able to make electronics that are thinner, faster and cheaper than anything based on silicon, with the option of making them clear and flexible. Long-lasting batteries that can be submerged in water are another possibility.

In 2011, researchers at Northwestern University built a batterythat incorporated graphene and silicon, which the university said could lead to a cellphone that “stayed charged for more than a week and recharged in just 15 minutes.” In 2012, the American Chemical Society said that advancements in graphene were leading to touch-screen electronics that “could make cellphones as thin as a piece of paper and foldable enough to slip into a pocket.”

Dr. Vijayaraghavan is building an array of sensors out of graphene — including gas sensors, biosensors and light sensors — that are far smaller than what has come before.

And last week, researchers at the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, working with Sungkyunkwan University in South Korea, said that Samsung had figured out how to create high-quality graphene on silicon wafers, which could be used for the production of graphene transistors. Samsung said in a statement that these advancements meant it could start making “flexible displays, wearables and other next-generation electronic devices.”

Sebastian Anthony, a reporter at Extreme Tech, said that Samsung’s breakthrough could end up being the “holy grail of commercial graphene production.”

Samsung is not the only company working to develop graphene. Researchers at IBM, Nokia and SanDisk have been experimenting with the material to create sensors, transistors and memory storage.

When these electronics finally hit store shelves, they could look and feel like nothing we’ve ever seen.

James Hone, a professor of mechanical engineering at Columbia University, said research in his lab led to the discovery that graphene could stretch by 20 percent while still remaining able to conduct electricity. “You know what else you can stretch by 20 percent? Rubber,” he said. “In comparison, silicon, which is in today’s electronics, can only stretch by 1 percent before it cracks.”

He continued: “That’s just one of the crazy things about this material — there’s really nothing else quite like it.”

The real kicker? Graphene is inexpensive.

If you think of something in today’s electronics industry, it can most likely be made better, smaller and cheaper with graphene.

Scientists at the University of California, Berkeley made graphene speakers last year that delivered sound at quality equal to or better than a pair of commercial Sennheiser earphones. And they were much smaller.

Another fascinating aspect of graphene is its ability to be submerged in liquids without oxidizing, unlike other conductive materials.

As a result, Dr. Vijayaraghavan said, graphene research is leading to experiments where electronics can integrate with biological systems. In other words, you could have a graphene gadget implanted in you that could read your nervous system or talk to your cells.

 
Reuters

But while researchers believe graphene will be used in next-generation gadgets, there are entire industries that build electronics using traditional silicon chips and transistors, and they could be slow to adopt graphene counterparts.

If that is the case, graphene might end up being used in other industries before it becomes part of electronics. Last year, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation paid for the development of a graphene-based condom that is thin, light and impenetrable. Carmakers are exploring building electronic cars with bodies made of graphene that are not only protective, but act as solar panels that charge the car’s battery. Airline makers also hope to build planes out of graphene.

If all that isn’t enough, an international team of researchers based at M.I.T. has performed tests that could lead to the creation of quantum computers, which would be a big market of computing in the future.

So forget plastics. There’s a great future in graphene. Think about it.

 

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