Malibu GmbH and Co

Bielefeld, Germany

Malibu GmbH and Co

Bielefeld, Germany
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News Article | April 18, 2017
Site: www.scientificamerican.com

Southern California’s beaches are an essential part of the state’s identity. The sandy, blond shorelines are like Hollywood or the towering redwoods—iconic. They are also an important piece of California’s more than $40-billion annual coastal and ocean economy. But scientists have bad news: Without human intervention, many of the region’s beautiful beaches may disappear by 2100 as sea levels rise. If the Golden State wants to save its golden shores, it will have to add sand to them—and lots of it. This troubling conclusion comes from a project to understand how climate change might affect the SoCal coast. Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago and the U.S. Geological Survey built a forecasting model for the region’s shoreline and published their results in a recent paper in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface. The team examined 500 kilometers of SoCal coast, extending from the Mexican border to Point Conception, just north of Santa Barbara—home to 18 million residents as well as extensive infrastructure. “It’s the most urbanized part of the west coast, so it was an optimal place to assess,” says study co-author Patrick Barnard, a coastal geologist with USGS. The region’s beaches differ significantly, ranging from the wide Baywatch-esque shores in the Los Angeles area to narrow strips of sand in places like Santa Barbara. And they’re backstopped by a wide variety of features—estuaries, cliffs, river mouths, public and private infrastructure and more. Barnard and his team predicted how SoCal’s shores would evolve from 2010 through 2100 by modeling the factors that influence beaches—estimates for sea level rise as well as wave and storm behavior and predicted climate change patterns if the world eventually stabilizes its greenhouse gas emissions by mid-century, then starts reducing them. The researchers chose their range of sea level–rise projections based on what is most likely to happen to the west coast, according to dozens of regional and global studies. They also took 15 years of historic data on how southern California’s beaches had changed and used that information to tune the model for the individual transects of beach, each 100 meters long. “That gave us confidence to project how the beaches will behave in the future,” Barnard explains, because it allowed the model to account for variations in features like sand-grain size and beach slope among the different beaches, along with dynamics such as sediment supply from rivers, dredging and past human additions of sand. The model revealed a dramatic picture: Without drastic intervention a huge portion of the sandy shores will likely vanish soon. “Roughly a third to two thirds of the beaches will effectively disappear by the end of the century,” with 0.93 to 2.0 meters of sea level–rise, Barnard says. Although wave conditions influence beach erosion in the short term, sea level rise becomes the dominant eroding force in the long term. This is a huge problem not only because beaches support shoreline life and attract tourists but also because they protect coastal communities from flooding and storms. “Beaches are the first line of defense because they absorb the energy from storms,” he explains. Climate change is not the only human impact here. If people had not built heavily along the shoreline, the beaches would just naturally migrate inland as the ocean rises. Bernard notes people have put the beaches under serious pressure because “we’re probably not going to let the beach move past a certain point.” In those many cases, he says, “we’ll have to add sand.” California has added sand to its beaches for decades—for instance, about 1.3 million cubic yards of sand is placed every five to seven years at Surfside–Sunset in Orange County. Since 2000 San Diego has twice pumped about 1.5 million to two million cubic yards of sand from offshore onto beaches throughout the county, and it has performed a number of smaller replenishments during that time as well. These “nourishment” projects, as they are called, usually average out to about $8 to $10 per cubic yard of sand, says Lesley Ewing, a senior coastal engineer with the California Coastal Commission. The problem is, Barnard and his team had already assumed that recent rates of sand addition would continue. Far more beyond that amount will be needed to keep SoCal’s beaches from disappearing. The researchers do not know exactly how much sand will be required, but they are working with the commission to determine the amount. “My sense is that it’s an order of magnitude larger—you might need 10 times the amount of sand than what’s been placed before to maintain beaches,” Barnard says. “It’s going to take a much larger effort.” He estimates billions more dollars will be necessary. The state will have to pump the sand from offshore or truck it from inland sources like riverbeds and quarries. Both options are expensive and, ironically, can harm the surrounding ecosystem. Even then some beaches will succumb to sea level rise. “It might not be reasonable to try to keep every beach that exists now, because we don’t have enough sand to do that into perpetuity,” Ewing says. “We’re still going to have some of those nice California beaches but some of the smaller ones will be lost.” According to the study, many popular beaches are at risk in places such as San Diego, Malibu and much of Santa Barbara. Communities may decide to surrender some of their coastline development in favor of saving the beaches and letting them migrate inland. Ewing thinks this type of managed retreat will become more common as people start to understand the onerous cost of relentless nourishment. Either way, Barnard says, “we’re going to have to do massive interventions if we want to maintain the safety and vitality of these coastal communities.”


Chevrolet hosted dealers, salespeople and the media at an event called the Find New Roads Experience at Texas Motor Speedway. I mainly focused on the technology, and I saw a few cool features in the new Chevrolets that I'd like to highlight. I love hybrid vehicles. They combine an electric motor with a traditional gasoline engine to increase fuel mileage. The cars switch between the motors as needed and even use both at the same time, but I always wondered exactly when each motor was being used. The Chevy Malibu Hybrid's center screen can show an outline of the car with both engines, and as you drive, the screen shows when the car is on battery power, using the gasoline engine, using both engines or when it's sending power back to the battery (regenerating) through coasting or braking. I've not driven a hybrid before, so this might not be a new or unique feature, but it was exactly the kind of information I wanted to see while driving the Malibu. It's a simple graphic, but it really helped me understand how to adjust my driving habits to save gas. I saw a cool demo of an optional camera system for the Silverado pickup designed for keeping an eye on payload or a trailer and making it a bit easier when it's time to back that trailer into a tight spot. Fixed video cameras are mounted in the left and right side-view mirrors, and a third camera is mounted on the top of the cab, pointed into the bed, which is great for connecting a fifth-wheel trailer. Finally, an optional fourth camera can be mounted in several places, including on the tailgate, on the back of a trailer or even inside the trailer for keeping an eye on cargo or livestock that you are hauling. Perhaps the best feature I saw was on several vehicles, including the Malibu and the Suburban: It's an automatic reminder to check the back seat when you get out of the vehicle. The car realizes when you've opened the rear doors, and the next time you turn off the motor, a dialogue box pops up on the dashboard's info screen telling you to check the rear seat. It doesn't come out and say, "Hey, make sure you're not leaving a small child in the car" but it's clear that's the gist. You only see the dialogue when the rear doors have been opened. I'm not sure how many vehicles from any manufacturer have this feature, but of all things I saw during the event, it made the biggest impression on me. Explore further: 2017 Kia Niro is most affordable hybrid SUV


The effects of rising oceans on coastal flooding may be even worse than we thought. Scientists have found that a mere 10 to 20 centimeters of sea-level rise — which is expected by 2050 — will more than double the frequency of serious flooding events in many parts of the globe, including along the California coastline. The findings, described in Scientific Reports, highlight the environmental and economic impacts of sea-level rise on coastal areas, and the need to properly predict and prepare for these effects. As global warming marches onward and land-ice reserves continue to melt into the seas — thanks in large part to human-produced greenhouse gases — oceans are continuing their upward creep. Researchers have long made global-scale estimates of sea-level rise and analyzed what effects the ocean’s ascent will have on coastal erosion, on the environment and on human communities. Those estimates have taken into account storm surge and tidal fluctuations, among other variables. But they haven’t included a crucial factor: waves. “Most of these tide gauges are within harbors or in protected areas, so they don’t record any water level associated with waves,” said Sean Vitousek, a coastal scientist at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Waves might seem like small potatoes compared with high tides, but they can have a big impact, Vitousek said. “Waves often generate a pretty significant portion of the actual flood levels,” he explained. “For instance, if you think about just tides and storm surge, then in some areas, waves can add an additional 50-to-100% of that existing water level.” That’s particularly true in California. Much of the flooding here is dominated by wave-driven events — which is why El Niño years with extremely large waves can have such profound effects on coastal erosion. A recent paper by one of Vitousek’s co-authors showed that the 2015-16 El Niño season caused unprecedented levels of erosion across much of the West Coast. Even on islands in the Pacific and other equatorial regions where waves are smaller and the tides bring only a few centimeters of change, waves can have an outsize impact — in part because humans may build closer to the water line in those areas and be unprepared for the changes that come with sea-level rise. For this paper, Vitousek and his colleagues combined wave, tidal and storm surge models with their data on sea-level projections. The results showed that 10 to 20 centimeters of sea-level rise happening no later than 2050 could have major impacts in many parts of the globe, including around India, the Indian Ocean and the tropical Atlantic along the west coast of Africa. “Often these areas are fairly low-lying, have a lot of development, and those areas would also be fairly impacted by future sea-level rise,” he said. “As you go to higher latitudes, you’ll still get these effects, but not quite as much, because the waves are larger, the tide is larger and so sea-level rise doesn’t represent the same percent or relative contribution to those areas.” The effects will be most pronounced in the tropics, the researchers found. Areas such as the Marshall Islands in the central Pacific are particularly vulnerable. “You’ll still see impacts at higher latitudes — the California coast, the Pacific Northwest — but you probably won’t see the same dramatic effects that you would in the tropics,” Vitousek said. “It’s really going to happen everywhere, [but] it’ll happen faster in the tropics.” The southern portion of Southern California may experience the brunt of sea-level rise in the region, he said. That includes beaches from around Point Loma all the way up to Laguna Beach, including La Jolla, Del Mar and Oceanside. “These areas have very limited stretches of sandy beach providing a buffer from storms, so they will certainly be the ones that experience the largest impact,” he said. Beaches in the Los Angeles area, such as in Santa Monica and Redondo Beach, and Dockweiler Beach by LAX, are much wider, with extremely large buffers of sand between land and water (thanks in part to decades of “nourishment” as humans dredged sand and brought it to shore). But many areas in Malibu and Santa Barbara will feel the hit. Thanks to waves, higher sea levels in California come not just with flooding, but with erosion and cliff retreat. The scientists are sharing this information with state and local agencies to try to figure out where the most vulnerable areas may be — and what should be done to prepare them. For the moment, Vitousek said, one of the easiest solutions may be more beach nourishment, even though it’s a temporary solution at best. The scientists hope to calculate how much economic damage could be incurred by the effects of sea-level rise. In the meantime, they’re continuing to study its impact on the California coastline in ever more granular detail — and that in-depth understanding may help scientists continue to improve their models for the world. “I think it calls to attention the future consequences of sea level rise,” said William Sweet, an oceanographer with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Silver Spring, Md., who was not involved in the work. Sweet recently led a NOAA report showing that sea-level rise will progress faster in some places and slower in others — variations that would be key in understanding coastal flooding effects in different areas. The Scientific Reports paper did not take this into account. “In reality it’s not going to be a uniform rise,” he said. “The change in land elevation itself, changes in circulation, change in gravity in the future as the ice caps change are all going to cause a very non-uniform rise in sea levels.” Future, increasingly detailed assessments of the impacts of sea-level rise, he added, will need to take that variability into account. Follow @aminawrite on Twitter for more science news and "like" Los Angeles Times Science & Health on Facebook.


News Article | May 9, 2017
Site: hosted2.ap.org

(AP) — The western snowy plover is nesting along the Los Angeles area coast for the first time in nearly seven decades, federal officials said. Nests for the small, rare shorebird were found last month at Santa Monica Beach, Dockweiler State Beach, and Malibu Lagoon State Beach, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reported Monday. Biologists placed wire cages around the nests to protect them. "This is a sign that, against all odds, western snowy plovers are making a comeback, and we really need the cooperation of beachgoers to help give them the space they need to nest and raise their young," said Chris Dellith, a Fish and Wildlife biologist in Southern California. Although western snowy plovers use LA County beaches for roosting during the winter, the last documented active nest was in 1949 at Manhattan Beach. The 6-inch shorebird with dark patches on its back remains threatened by habitat loss, predation and human population growth. They were listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1993. The birds lay their eggs in small depressions on sandy sections of beaches from Baja California in Mexico all the way north to Washington. The plover's worldwide population was estimated at 1,800 as of 2016. The plover nests on Malibu and Dockweiler state beaches are located within partially fenced areas, but remain at risk of disturbance, officials said. To ensure the eggs and future chicks have the best possible change of survival, biologists are asking beachgoers to keep their distance.


News Article | May 9, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

FILE - This Sept. 27, 2001, file photo shows a snowy plover at a beach nesting area in San Luis Obispo County on California's Central Coast. Federal officials said the western snowy plover is nesting along the Los Angeles County coast for the first time in nearly seven decades. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reported Monday, May 8, 2017, that nests for the small, rare shorebird were found last month at Santa Monica Beach, Dockweiler State Beach, and Malibu Lagoon State Beach. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File) LOS ANGELES (AP) — The western snowy plover is nesting along the Los Angeles area coast for the first time in nearly seven decades, federal officials said. Nests for the small, rare shorebird were found last month at Santa Monica Beach, Dockweiler State Beach, and Malibu Lagoon State Beach, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reported Monday. Biologists placed wire cages around the nests to protect them. "This is a sign that, against all odds, western snowy plovers are making a comeback, and we really need the cooperation of beachgoers to help give them the space they need to nest and raise their young," said Chris Dellith, a Fish and Wildlife biologist in Southern California. Although western snowy plovers use LA County beaches for roosting during the winter, the last documented active nest was in 1949 at Manhattan Beach. The 6-inch shorebird with dark patches on its back remains threatened by habitat loss, predation and human population growth. They were listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1993. The birds lay their eggs in small depressions on sandy sections of beaches from Baja California in Mexico all the way north to Washington. The plover's worldwide population was estimated at 1,800 as of 2016. The plover nests on Malibu and Dockweiler state beaches are located within partially fenced areas, but remain at risk of disturbance, officials said. To ensure the eggs and future chicks have the best possible change of survival, biologists are asking beachgoers to keep their distance.


News Article | May 9, 2017
Site: phys.org

Nests for the small, rare shorebird were found last month at Santa Monica Beach, Dockweiler State Beach, and Malibu Lagoon State Beach, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reported Monday. Biologists placed wire cages around the nests to protect them. "This is a sign that, against all odds, western snowy plovers are making a comeback, and we really need the cooperation of beachgoers to help give them the space they need to nest and raise their young," said Chris Dellith, a Fish and Wildlife biologist in Southern California. Although western snowy plovers use LA County beaches for roosting during the winter, the last documented active nest was in 1949 at Manhattan Beach. The 6-inch shorebird with dark patches on its back remains threatened by habitat loss, predation and human population growth. They were listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1993. The birds lay their eggs in small depressions on sandy sections of beaches from Baja California in Mexico all the way north to Washington. The plover's worldwide population was estimated at 1,800 as of 2016. The plover nests on Malibu and Dockweiler state beaches are located within partially fenced areas, but remain at risk of disturbance, officials said. To ensure the eggs and future chicks have the best possible change of survival, biologists are asking beachgoers to keep their distance. Explore further: Endangered shorebird nests in NY; first time in over 30 years


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: ENERGY.2011.2.1-2;NMP.2011.1.2-1 | Award Amount: 12.88M | Year: 2012

In recent years, the effort in thin-film silicon (TFSi) was made at solving industrialization issues. In 2010, several companies demonstrated 10% stable modules (> 1 m). The major bricks for efficient production are now in place. Next challenges are linked to the fact that TFSi multi-junction devices, allowing for higher efficiency, are complex devices, in which the substrate geometry and each layer have an impact on the full device. This explains why the first industrializations focused on single technology roads (e.g., Jlich-AMAT or EPFL-Oerlikon approaches). This project focuses at bringing the next-generation technology to the market, using newly developed state-of-the art knowledge to solve the complex puzzle of achieving at the same time strong light in-coupling (high current) and good electrical properties (open-circuit voltage and fill factor). In a unique collaborative effort of the leading EU industries and research institutions in the field, the consortium will go beyond the current technology status by Introducing novel materials, including multi-phase nanomaterials (such as doped nc-SiOx, high crystallinity nc-Si materials), stable top cell materials, nanoimprinted substrates and novel or adapted transparent conductive oxides; Designing and implementing ideal device structures, taking into account the full interaction of layers in multi-junction devices; Controlling the growth of active layers on textured materials; Working at processes that could allow a further extension of the technology such as very high rate nc-Si deposition or multi-step superstrate etching; Transferring processes, including static and dynamic plasma deposition, from the laboratory to pilot scale, with first trials in production lines. The targets of the project is to achieve solar cells with 14% stable efficiency, leading to the demonstration of reliable production size prototypes module at 12% level. Potential cost below 0.5/Wp should be demonstrated.


Lukermann F.,Bielefeld University | Heinzmann U.,Bielefeld University | Stiebig H.,Bielefeld University | Stiebig H.,Malibu GmbH and Co
Applied Physics Letters | Year: 2012

By embedding silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) of approximately 20 nm diameter inside the intrinsic layer of thin hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) n-i-p devices, a photocurrent is measured for photon energies below the a-Si:H bandgap. This is attributed to the excitation of charge carriers from defect states created by the incorporation of the Ag inside the silicon network. The defect location inside the strong electromagnetic fields close to the resonant absorbing NPs enables high transition rates. This is a proof of concept for the use of the impurity photovoltaic effect in a-Si:H devices. © 2012 American Institute of Physics.


Palanchoke U.,Jacobs University Bremen | Palanchoke U.,Malibu GmbH and Co | Jovanov V.,Jacobs University Bremen | Kurz H.,Malibu GmbH and Co | And 3 more authors.
Optics Express | Year: 2012

Plasmonic effects in amorphous silicon thin film solar cells with randomly textured metal back contact were investigated experimentally and numerically. The influence of different metal back contacts with and without ZnO interlayer was studied and losses in the individual layers of the solar cell were quantified. The amorphous silicon thin film solar cells were prepared on randomly textured substrates using large area production equipment and exhibit conversion efficiencies approaching 10%. The optical wave propagation within the solar cells was studied by Finite Difference Time Domain simulations. The quantum efficiency of solar cells with and without ZnO interlayer was simulated and the interplay between the reflection, quantum efficiency and absorption in the back contact will be discussed. © 2012 Optical Society of America.


Patent
Malibu GmbH and Co | Date: 2010-06-17

A photovoltaic module, particularly a thin-film photovoltaic module, includes at least one carrier panel preferably implemented as a glass panel, one or more coatings applied to the carrier panel for generating electrical current, at least one or more electrically conductive contacts, at least one cover coating for covering at least one partial region of the carrier panel with the coatings generating electricity, the electrically conductive contacts and optionally a glass cover panel. The cover coating is particularly implemented as a melted coating, at least one bulk granular granulate being used for the production thereof.

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