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Stanford study could lead to paradigm shift in organic solar cell research

Organic solar cells have long been touted as lightweight, low-cost alternatives to rigid solar panels made of silicon. Dramatic improvements in the efficiency of organic photovoltaics have been made in recent years, yet the fundamental question of how these devices convert sunlight into electricity is still hotly debated. Now a Stanford University research team is weighing in on the controversy. Their findings,...

Scientists develop heat-resistant materials that could vastly improve solar cell efficiency

Scientists have created a heat-resistant thermal emitter that could significantly improve the efficiency of solar cells. The novel component is designed to convert heat from the sun into infrared light, which can than be absorbed by solar cells to make electricity – a technology known as thermophotovoltaics. Unlike earlier prototypes that fell apart at temperatures below 2200 degrees Fahrenheit (1200 degrees...

Nanowires Have the Power to Revolutionize Solar Energy

Imagine a solar panel more efficient than today’s best solar panels, but using 10 000 times less material. This is what EPFL researchers expect given recent findings on these tiny filaments called nanowires. Solar technology integrating nanowires could capture large quantities of light and produce energy with incredible efficiency at a much lower cost. This technology is possibly the future for powering microchips...

U of T Engineering breakthrough promises significantly more efficient solar cells

TORONTO, ON – A new technique developed by University of Toronto Engineering Professor Ted Sargent and his research group could lead to significantly more efficient solar cells, according to a recent paper published in the journalNano Letters. Tags: plasmonic, efficient solar cell technology, nanoshells, colloidal quantum dot photovoltaics ...

Stanford scientists build the first all-carbon solar cell

Stanford University scientists have built the first solar cell made entirely of carbon, a promising alternative to the expensive materials used in photovoltaic devices today. The results are published in the Oct. 31 online edition of the journal ACS Nano. Tags: Solar cell, Solar ...

Solar cells made from black silicon

The Sun blazes down from a deep blue sky – and rooftop solar cells convert this solar energy into electricity. Not all of it, however: Around a quarter of the Sun’s spectrum is made up of infrared radiation which cannot be converted by standard solar cells – so this heat radiation is lost. One way to overcome this is to use black silicon, a material that absorbs nearly all of the sunlight that hits...

WPI professor wins Catalyst Award for innovative design for grid storage batteries

Yan Wang receives award from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center to support work on a new design for flow batteries that can be used to store electric energy produced by wind and solar power installations Worcester, Mass. – An innovative design developed by a researcher at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) for flow batteries—rechargeable energy systems that can be used to store electric energy produced...