Solar Energy News

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Updated: 47 min 51 sec ago

Unique material created for the next generation solar cells

Fri, 07/17/2015 - 8:21am
Researchers have developed material which offers much cheaper alternative to the one which is currently being used in hybrid solar cells. The efficiency of the semi-conductors created by the team of chemists has been confirmed.

Plantations of nanorods on carpets of graphene capture the Sun's energy

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 11:24am
The Sun can be a better chemist, thanks to zinc oxide nanorod arrays grown on a graphene substrate and 'decorated' with dots of cadmium sulphide. In the presence of solar radiation, this combination of zero and one-dimensional semiconductor structures with two-dimensional graphene is a great catalyst for many chemical reactions.

Are fuel cells environmentally friendly? Not always

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 10:33am
Fuel cells are regarded as the technology of the future for both cars and household heating systems. As a result, they have a key role to play in the switch to renewable energies. But are fuel cells always more environmentally friendly? An international team of scientists performed a series of calculations and reached a conclusion: It depends on the fuel.

Is the energy system really ready for sustainable energy?

Tue, 07/14/2015 - 7:30am
New research into sustainable energy systems focuses on integrating renewable and nuclear power plants into the electrical grid – a topic high on the agenda for scholars, industry and policy makers.

Nanoscale light-emitting device has big profile

Mon, 07/13/2015 - 3:14pm
Engineers have created a nanoscale device that can emit light as powerfully as an object 10,000 times its size. It's an advance that could have huge implications for everything from photography to solar power.

The quantum physics of artificial light harvesting

Mon, 07/13/2015 - 10:33am
Plants and bacteria make use of sunlight with remarkably high efficiency: nine out of ten absorbed light particles are being put to use in an ordinary bacterium. For years, it has been a pressing question of modern research whether or not effects from quantum physics are responsible for this outstanding performance of natural light harvesters. Scientists have now examined these quantum effects in an artificial model system.

Discovery of a 'heat-storage ceramic'

Mon, 07/13/2015 - 8:57am
Researchers have discovered a new type of material which stores heat energy for a prolonged period, which they have termed a "heat storage ceramic." This new material can be used as heat storage material for solar heat energy generation systems or efficient use of industrial heat waste, enabling recycling of heat energy, since the material releases the stored heat energy on demand by application of weak pressure.

New design could dramatically boost efficiency of low-cost solar panels

Sun, 07/12/2015 - 7:40pm
A new material design could make low-cost solar panels far more efficient by greatly enhancing their ability to collect the sun’s energy and release it as electricity.

Depletion, enrichment of chlorine in perovskites observed

Thu, 07/09/2015 - 10:34am
X-ray spectroscopy at BESSY II reveals inhomogenous distribution of chlorine in a special class of perovskite materials. The discovery could help to enhance efficiencies of perovskite thin film solar cells by controlled processing to optimize the chlorine distribution.

Future deployment of distributed solar hinges on electricity rate design

Thu, 07/09/2015 - 8:33am
Future distributed solar photovoltaic (PV) deployment levels are highly sensitive to retail electricity rate design, according to a newly released report. The study also explores the feedback effects between retail electricity rates and PV deployment, and suggests that increased solar deployment can lead to changes in PV compensation levels that either accelerate or dampen further deployment.

Testing heats up at solar tower with high temperature falling particle receiver

Tue, 07/07/2015 - 11:09am
Researchers are working to lower the cost of solar energy systems and improve efficiencies in a big way, thanks to a system of small particles. Falling particle receiver technology is expected to further advance the state-of-the art in concentrating solar power tower systems capable of generating up to 100 megawatts of electricity.

Switzerland's transition away from nuclear power

Tue, 07/07/2015 - 9:20am
Switzerland has a long history of trying to be as self-sufficient and energy independent as possible. Although its energy supply system has served it well in the past, the country is now looking to turn away from its reliance on nuclear power and seeks to compensate for the energy lost from hydropower as a result of climate change.

Record-breaking solar flight reaches Hawaii after 5 nights and days airborne without fuel

Fri, 07/03/2015 - 2:59pm
The longest and most difficult leg of the Round the World Solar Flight attempted since last March by Swiss explorers Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg ended successfully in Hawaii. At the controls of Solar Impulse 2, pilot André Borschberg landed safely in Hawaii after flying 117 hours and 52 minutes over the Pacific Ocean from Japan powered only by the sun.

Viaducts with wind turbines, the new renewable energy source

Thu, 07/02/2015 - 8:51am
Wind turbines could be installed under some of the biggest bridges on the road network to produce electricity. So it is confirmed by calculations carried out by a European researchers team, that have taken a viaduct in the Canary Islands as a reference. This concept could be applied in heavily built-up territories or natural areas with new constructions limitations.

New storage cell for solar energy storage, nighttime conversion

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 12:18pm
A materials science and engineering team has developed a new energy cell that can store large-scale solar energy even when it's dark.

New method can make cheaper solar energy storage

Wed, 07/01/2015 - 7:37am
Building on a unique idea, scientists have developed a cost-effective new method for converting and storing solar energy into hydrogen.

Orange is the new red

Sat, 06/27/2015 - 7:12am
A photoprotective mechanism in cyanobacteria is triggered by an unprecedented, large-scale movement from one location to another of the carotenoid pigment within the Orange Carotenoid Protein, researchers have discovered.

Better heat exchangers using garbage bags

Fri, 06/26/2015 - 12:07pm
Researchers are making better heat exchangers for industrial use using the same plastic as in garbage bags.

First certified efficiency of 15% in perovskite solar cells with area of over 1 square cm

Thu, 06/25/2015 - 7:13am
Researchers achieved 15% energy conversion efficiency in perovskite solar cells for the first time certified at an international public test center.

Distributed technique for power 'scheduling' advances smart grid concept

Wed, 06/24/2015 - 9:59am
A new technique for 'scheduling' energy in electric grids has been developed. It moves away from centralized management by tapping into the distributed computing power of energy devices. The approach advances the smart grid concept by coordinating the energy being produced and stored by both conventional and renewable sources.