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During glacial times, the North Atlantic region was affected by serious climate changes corresponding to Dansgaard-Oeschger cycles that were linked to dramatic shifts in sea temperature and moisture transfer to the continents. However, considerable efforts are still needed to understand the effects of these shifts on terrestrial environments. In this context, the Iberian Peninsula is particularly interesting because of its close proximity to the North Atlantic, although the Iberian interior lacks paleoenvironmental information so far because suitable archives are rare. Here we provide an accurate impression of the last glacial environmental developments in central Iberia based on comprehensive investigations using the upper Tagus loess record. A multi-proxy approach revealed that phases of loess formation during Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 2 (and upper MIS 3) were linked to utmost aridity, coldness, and highest wind strengths in line with the most intense Greenland stadials also including Heinrich Events 3–1. Lack of loess deposition during the global last glacial maximum (LGM) suggests milder conditions, which agrees with less-cold sea surface temperatures (SST) off the Iberian margin. Our results demonstrate that geomorphological system behavior in central Iberia is highly sensitive to North Atlantic SST fluctuations, thus enabling us to reconstruct a detailed hydrological model in relation to marine–atmospheric circulation patterns.
Solar energy is abundant and offers significant potential for near-term (2020) and long-term (2050) climate change mitigation. There are a wide variety of solar technologies of varying maturities that can, in most regions of the world, contribute to a suite of energy services. Even though solar energy generation still only represents a small fraction of total energy consumption, markets for solar technologies are growing rapidly. Much of the desirability of solar technology is its inherently smaller environmental burden and the opportunity it offers for positive social impacts. The cost of solar technologies has been reduced significantly over the past 30 years and technical advances and supportive public policies continue to offer the potential for additional cost reductions. Potential deployment scenarios range widely—from a marginal role of direct solar energy in 2050 to one of the major sources of energy supply. The actual deployment achieved will depend on the degree of continued innovation, cost reductions and supportive public policies.
Solar energy is the most abundant of all energy resources. Indeed, the rate at which solar energy is intercepted by the Earth is about 10,000 times greater than the rate at which humankind consumes energy. Although not all countries are equally endowed with solar energy, a significant contribution to the energy mix from direct solar energy is possible for almost every country. Currently, there is no evidence indicating a substantial impact of climate change on regional solar resources.
This contribution compares the growth of Cu(Ga,In)S2 based thin film solar cell absorbers in rapid thermal systems using sulfur vapor Sx or H2S/Ar as reactive atmosphere, focusing on Ga-related influences on film growth and phase formation. Cu-In alloying in the precursor is kinetically hindered by the presence of Cu-Ga phases. In sulfur vapor Ga-containing samples sulfurize via an intermediate CuIn2S8 phase, thereby delaying the full sulfurization and recrystallization of the layer. In contrast, in H2S/Ar fast Ga-In interdiffusion and no intermediate chalcogenide phases are observed. The inhomogeneous Ga depth distribution usually reported for sequentially prepared Cu(In,Ga)S2 films can be assigned to the segregation of CuGaS2 prior to CuInS2.