Researchers obtain patent for new process that converts waste heat into hydrogen

Researchers from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Penn State have discovered an effective method to convert waste heat into hydrogen gas without the use of fossil fuels. 

They were awarded a U.S. patent on Aug. 18 for their efforts.

“Existing methods are already very effective at making hydrogen gas,” said Bruce Logan, Evan Pugh Professor of Environmental Engineering. “The problem is that these methods consume fossil fuels in order to generate enough energy to create the hydrogen gas.”

Penn State engineering professors cultivate creativity worldwide

Although creativity is most often associated with the arts, being creative is really about thinking differently and taking action in innovative ways, something that can provide an edge in almost any field. Four faculty members from Penn State felt creativity was so essential, in fact, that they joined forces to develop an entire course around the concept.

The faculty members wanted to create something that could have a far-reaching impact, so they developed a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) and worked with Coursera to offer it free to students around the world.

Researchers study inexpensive process to clean water in developing nations

What would happen if a common tree had the potential to turn cloudy, contaminated water into clean, safe drinking water for millions in need? Penn State researchers are hoping to find out using the seeds of the Moringa oleifera tree.

Lack of potable water is a huge problem in many developing countries. According to UNICEF, 783 million people worldwide are without improved drinking water, and the World Health Organization estimates that lack of proper drinking water causes 1.6 million deaths each year from diarrheal and parasitic diseases.