Researchers figure out how coffee can boost (some) solar cells

Oh great, more competition for my morning coffee.

Charge nano-map could help scientists turn perovskite into THE solar cell material

Despite solar cells made with perovskite recently crossed the 20 percent efficiency mark, researchers say there’s still room to improve if only they knew how charge flows at the nanometer scale. They just had to ask.

The two-in-one solar cell might harness energy cheaply and efficiently

A team at Stanford and MIT has devised a novel configuration that combines silicon – the leading solar cell semiconductor – and perovskite – a cheap mineral, only recently exploited for converting solar energy – to form two different layers of sunlight-absorbing material in order to harness energy across a wider spectrum. While performance at this stage is not impressive (it’s equally as good or bad as conventional single-layer silicon cells), researchers believe they have methods at their disposal that could double efficiency. If that were to happen, than these could be the cheap, but efficient solar cells we’ve all been waiting for.

Scientists create better, cheaper perovskite crystals

Researchers at Brown University have found a cheaper and easier way to create hybrid perovskites, enabling engineers to develop more affordable and efficient solar cells. Perovskite is a calcium titanium oxide mineral composed of calcium titanate (CaTiO3). The mineral has received much attention in recent years as artificial perovskite crystals have increasingly been used in solar cells. Perovskite films in solar cells are excellent light absorbers, but they until now, they were more expensive to fabric and only created small crystals.

One single scrap car battery could be turned into solar cells that power 30 homes

Lead-acid car batteries used to be the norm, but luckily we’re seeing a massive shift towards more efficient and environmentally friendly alternatives like lithium-ion. Still, there are fleets of hundreds of millions of cars that still employ these archaic and toxic batteries. Typically, manufacturers try to have car owners bring their old lead-acid batteries, which are then converted into more

Brighter and cheaper LEDs could be made from perovskite

We’ve covered quite a bit the recent developments involving perovskite as an extremely promising light-to-energy conversion semiconductor. Now, researchers at University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität are performing research on perovskite-based devices that work the other way around by emitting light. Their research has turned out promising results that suggest high-brightness LEDs, manufactured at low cost and more easily,

Spray-coated solar cells bring solar power to every corner

Researchers at University of Sheffield demonstrate a perovskite spray-on solar cell for the first time. Also, this is the first time rated efficiency for a spray-on solar cell tops two figures in efficiency, marking an important milestone and breakthrough in the field.

Perovskite solar cells might help the solar market grow to new heights

A crystal known to science for more than a century has only in recent years become recognized for its use in harvesting solar power. Since the first successful usage of perovskite in solar cells in 2009, the advances in the field have grown exponentially over time, making it a potential candidate for revamping the solar industry. Indeed, the crystal might

Earth’s most abundant mineral finally gets a name

What’s the most common mineral on Earth? Is it quartz, limestone? Maybe olivine? Well, if you take into consideration the entire planet, the most common mineral would be something known as silicate-perovskite – but now, that mineral finally has a name. On June 2, bridgmanite was approved as the formal name for silicate-perovskite – possibly of the Earth’s most plentiful yet elusive mineral known to

This material can be turned into a solar cell by day and light source by night

Scientists have made great efforts to discover a material that can be used to both absorb and emit light. A fluke may have suffice, since researchers at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore discovered by accident a material that can be used to work as a solar panel, harnessing energy from the sun during the day, as well as a

The mysterious case of the missing Xenon

Xenon is a noble gas, the second heaviest of the chemically inert noble gases. The only problem with is that… it’s gone missing! Xenon is almost entirely missing from our atmosphere, somethign which researchers were unable to answer – until now, that is. German researchers believe they managed to find out where the gas is hiding. In the air or