Researchers Improve Solar Capture with Materials that Enhance Scattering of Light
September 11, 2013 6:30 AM
comment(s) - last by
Nanostructures with different photoconduction properties
(Source: University of Pennsylvania)
The process can also be customized for different applications
Researchers have found a new technique of collecting energy from light for
improved solar energy harvesting
, which could lead to better optoelectronic devices.
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania -- led by Dawn Bonnell, Penn's vice provost for research and Trustee Professor of Materials Science and Engineering in the School of Engineering and Applied Science -- have used plasmonic structures and a technique called ferroelectric nanolithography to make a process more efficient than conventional photoconduction.
The study is based on Bonnell and colleagues' previous work from 2010. At that time
they reported the fabrication of a plasmonic nanostructure that induced and projected an electrical current across molecules. Plasmons are a collective oscillation of electrons. Ferroelectric nanolithography was used to design the material, which is an array of gold nanoparticles that tends to get plasmons excited due to optical radiation.
However, the team couldn't exactly prove that the improved transduction of optical radiation to an electrical current was due to excited plasmons creating hot electrons.
"We hypothesized that, when plasmons are excited to a high energy state, we should be able to harvest the electrons out of the material," said Bonnell. "If we could do that, we could use them for molecular electronics device applications, such as circuit components or solar energy extraction."
Now, in the latest study, Bonnell and the team varied the the size of the gold nanoparticles, the size of the porphyin molecules and the spacing of those components. They also designed certain structures that ruled out other possibilities so that the enhanced photocurrent could only be from the hot electrons harvested from the plasmons.
The materials fabricated from gold particles and light-sensitive molecules of porphyin (which consisted of precise sizes and were arranged in specific patterns) made the plasmons excited by optical radiation and caused them to induce an electrical current that can move in a pattern determined by the size and arrangement of the gold particles, as well as the electrical properties of the environment. These materials can enhance the scattering of light and can increase absorption in solar cells.
By changing the size and spacing of nanoparticles, the wavelength of light to which the plasmon responds is adjusted. This means the process can be customized.
The results found increases of three to 10 times in the efficiency through the use of plasmons and ferroelectric nanolithography compared to conventional photoexcitation.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
now if we only had better storage of the big "E"
9/11/2013 12:11:20 PM
Our biggest problem today's world is Energy Storage.
Energy storage is always a big problem when harvesting it. Aka solar, nuclear, hydro-electric, etc etc.
Energy is conductive and storing conductive is difficult to maintain over time as = heat, and heat temps rise and cool and keeping that in check for long term use, just is not in place in our current technology.
Gas = easier to store longer, and can be used on demand turn on or off, but it has pitfalls also as we all know, but battery systems, are just to short to be viable. For the ever modern demand of energy use people are asking for today vs the amounts of 10 to 20 years ago, was 30x less.
9/11/2013 4:02:29 PM
Abigail. I can see what your saying... Helen`s st0rry is great, I just got a new Buick when I got my cheque for $5588 this month and-just over, ten grand last-munth. it's certainly my favourite work I've ever had. I started this four months/ago and pretty much immediately began to bring in at least $83, p/h. additional info ...........
"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher
Utility Companies See Rooftop Solar Energy as Business, Grid Threat
July 31, 2013, 4:18 PM
Newly Discovered Costa Rican Glass Frog is Kermit's Doppelgänger
April 22, 2015, 11:26 AM
Researchers Hope to Find "Exotic" Lifeforms Inside Crater of Dinosaur Killing Meteor
April 14, 2015, 8:47 PM
Mathematician's Sociological Formulation May Explain the "Hipster Paradox"
April 14, 2015, 1:13 PM
Cool Science Video: This is What a McDonald's Burger Looks Like in Your Stomach
April 7, 2015, 1:43 PM
Fraud Artist Engineered Stunning UK Jailbreak Via Typosquatting, Email
April 4, 2015, 2:57 PM
Food Chemists at Italy's Barilla Claim to Have Perfect Instant Noodles w/out Frying
March 26, 2015, 4:25 PM
Most Popular Articles
Windows 10 Build 10061: A Quick Review
April 27, 2015, 10:57 AM
Ding Dong the Deal is Dead: What's Next After Failed Comcast/TWC Merger
April 28, 2015, 2:06 PM
Report: Apple Pulls the Plug on Apple Watch Store Launch
April 16, 2015, 3:18 PM
Leather-Bound LG G4 Shuffles Out, "Specially Designed" Snapdragon 808 SoC
April 28, 2015, 4:00 PM
Microsoft "Welcomes Developers" to Its New "Edge Browser" (Codename: Spartan)
April 29, 2015, 7:25 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information