Solar Energy News

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Updated: 15 hours 35 min ago

Solar energy that doesn't block the view

Tue, 08/19/2014 - 6:02pm
Researchers have developed a new type of solar concentrator that when placed over a window creates solar energy while allowing people to actually see through the window. It is called a transparent luminescent solar concentrator and can be used on buildings, cell phones and any other device that has a flat, clear surface.

Organic photovoltaic cells of the future: Using charge formation efficiency to screen materials for future devices

Tue, 08/19/2014 - 9:29am
Organic photovoltaic cells -- a type of solar cell that uses polymeric materials to capture sunlight -- show tremendous promise as energy conversion devices, thanks to key attributes such as flexibility and low-cost production, but have complex power conversion processes. To maneuver around this problem, researchers have developed a method to determine the absolute value of the charge formation efficiency. The secret of their method is the combination of two types of spectroscopy.

Recycling old car batteries into solar cells: Environmental twofer could recycle lead batteries to make solar cells

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 9:34am
This could be a classic win-win solution: A system proposed by researchers recycles materials from discarded car batteries -- a potential source of lead pollution -- into new, long-lasting solar panels that provide emissions-free power.

Insights into a new class of semiconducting materials

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 2:35pm
A new paper describes investigations of the fundamental optical properties of a new class of semiconducting materials known as organic-inorganic 'hybrid' perovskites.

Making eco-friendly 'pre-fab nanoparticles': Versatile, water-soluble nano-modules

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 2:33pm
Materials chemists, polymer scientists and device physicists have reported on a breakthrough technique for controlling assembly of nanoparticles over multiple length scales that may allow cheaper, ecologically friendly manufacture of organic photovoltaics and other electronic devices.

Simulation models optimize water power

Wed, 08/06/2014 - 7:47am
The Columbia River basin in the Pacific Northwest offers great potential for water power; hydroelectric power stations there generate over 20,000 megawatts already. Now a simulation model will help optimize the operation of the extensive dam system.

LEDs made from 'wonder material' perovskite

Tue, 08/05/2014 - 11:21am
Colourful LEDs made from a material known as perovskite could lead to LED displays which are both cheaper and easier to manufacture in future. A hybrid form of perovskite -- the same type of material which has recently been found to make highly efficient solar cells that could one day replace silicon -- has been used to make low-cost, easily manufactured LEDs, potentially opening up a wide range of commercial applications in future, such as flexible color displays.

New material allows for ultra-thin solar cells

Mon, 08/04/2014 - 4:59am
Extremely thin, semi-transparent, flexible solar cells could soon become reality. Scientists have managed to create a semiconductor structure consisting of two ultra-thin layers, which appears to be excellently suited for photovoltaic energy conversion. Several months ago, the team had already produced an ultra-thin layer of the photoactive crystal tungsten diselenide. Now, this semiconductor has successfully been combined with another layer made of molybdenum disulphide, creating a designer-material that may be used in future low-cost solar cells.