facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Study: Coating hikes solar cell function

Feb. 26, 2008 at 10:44 AM   |   Comments

EVANSTON, Ill., Feb. 26 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists have developed an anode coating strategy that significantly enhances the efficiency of solar energy power conversion.

Northwestern University researchers noted the energy from sunlight falling on only 9 percent of California's Mojave Desert could power the entire United States. The problem is efficiently harvesting that power since current solar cell technologies are too expensive and inefficient for wide-scale commercial applications.

But the Northwestern scientists said their study, focusing on "engineering" organic material-electrode interfaces in bulk-heterojunction organic solar cells, might solve the problem.

The scientists said their findings promise to move researchers and developers worldwide closer to the goal of producing cheaper, more "manufacturable" and more easily implemented solar cells. Such technology, they said, would greatly reduce dependence on burning fossil fuels for electricity production as well as reduce the combustion product: carbon dioxide, a global warming greenhouse gas.

The study that included professors Tobin Marks and Robert Chang, researcher Bruce Buchholz and graduate students Michael Irwin and Alexander Hains appears in the online early edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

© 2008 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
trending
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
1
Mars rover spots rock shaped like thigh bone
2
Parched land in the drought-riddled West is actually rising
3
Tech industry All Stars developing 'Star Trek'-style communication badges
4
Latvia boasts world's first net for migrating bats
5
Neanderthals and humans interacted for thousands of years
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback