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Scientists demonstrate high-efficiency quantum dot solar cells

Research shows newly developed solar powered cells may soon outperform conventional photovoltaic technology. Scientists from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have demonstrated the first solar cell with external quantum efficiency (EQE) exceeding 100 percent for photons with energies in the solar range. (The EQE is the percentage of photons that get converted into electrons within the device.)...

Scientists build ‘nanobowls’ to protect catalysts needed for better biofuel production

It may sound like a post-season football game for very tiny players, but the “nanobowl” has nothing to do with sports and everything to do with improving the way biofuels are produced. That’s the hope of a team of scientists from the Institute for Atom Efficient Chemical Transformations (IACT), an Energy Frontier Research Center led by Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), and including Northwestern...

Novel technique to synthesize nanocrystals that harvest solar energy

One reason that solar energy has not been widely adopted is because light absorbing materials are not durable. Materials that harvest solar radiation for energy often overheat or degrade over time; this reduces their viability to compete with other renewable energy sources like wind or hydroelectric generators. Go to Source Tags: harvest solar energy, nanocrystals, materials ...

Scientists create highly transparent solar cells for windows that generate electricity

(Phys.org) — UCLA researchers have developed a new transparent solar cell that is an advance toward giving windows in homes and other buildings the ability to generate electricity while still allowing people to see outside. Their study appears in the journal ACS Nano. Go to Source Tags: transparent solar cell, generate electricity, windows ...

Building molecular ‘cages’ to fight disease

(Phys.org) — Researchers at the University of Washington in Seattle and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) have developed a computational approach to designing specialized proteins that assemble themselves to form nanoparticle cages that can be used to deliver drugs to tumors and other sites of disease. Published in the journal Science, this research could be utilized to create nanoparticle...

Nanoporous graphene could outperform best commercial water desalination techniques

(Phys.org) — Although oceans and seas contain about 97% of Earth’s water, currently only a fraction of a percent of the world’s potable water supply comes from desalinated salt water. In order to increase our use of salt water, desalination techniques must become more energy-efficient and less expensive to be sustainable. Tags: Desalination, Water, Energy ...

A step toward minute factories that produce medicine inside the body

Scientists are reporting an advance toward treating disease with minute capsules containing not drugs — but the DNA and other biological machinery for making the drug. In an article in ACS’ journal Nano Letters, they describe engineering micro- and nano-sized capsules that contain the genetically coded instructions, plus the read-out gear and assembly line for protein synthesis that can be switched on...