Hopes for the development of pebble-bed nuclear reactor technology, long held up as a safer alternative to conventional nuclear power, have suffered a blow. The South African government confirmed that it will effectively stop funding a long-term project to develop the technology.

The increasing cost of energy and concerns about the environment have emphasized the need to find new sources of fuel, with the microbial production of high-energy fuels a promising approach. Here, Escherichia coli is engineered to produce more complex biofuels

In a bid to overcome the drawbacks of existing biofuels, researchers have engineered a bacterium that can convert a form of raw plant biomass directly into clean, road-ready diesel.

Renewable energy is not a viable option unless energy can be stored on a large scale. David Lindley looks at five ways to do that.

Petrol might yet survive the green revolution. Some investors are taking seriously the concept of

No longer lowly pond scum, algae have rocketed in status to what some say is the most promising

A vast supply of energy is racing around the planet far above the surface. Erik Vance meets the engineers trying to bring the power of high-altitude wind down to earth.

Africa's Lake Kivu contains vast quantities of gas, which makes it both dangerous and valuable. Anjali Nayar asks whether it is possible to tap the gas without causing a disaster.

Slotting a fusion reactor into the heart of a nuclear fission plant could accelerate the development of waste-free nuclear energy. So why are all the designs still on paper, asks Ed Gerstner.

Light-emitting diodes based on organic materials (known as OLEDs) have a number of attractive qualities that could make them the light sources of choice for the future. Unfortunately until now they have never reached the power efficiencies of fluorescent tubes.