The term "photovoltaic" literally means "light-electricity". This technology arose in the 1950s and currently has great possibilities of making contributions in the transition towards sustainable development in the building sector. To this end, the challenge for the Sunglass project is to boost the use of photovoltaic solar energy by means of increasing the performance of the currently existing solar panels (their performance goes up to 15 % now).
Research carried out to date has focused on modifying the semiconductor material to make use of a greater part of the solar spectrum. Nevertheless, the Sunglass project puts forward an alternative approach, involving the "conversion of frequencies" phenomenon — based on absorbing photons of certain frequencies and emitting another range of frequencies.
Study on photoactive compounds
Various photoactive compounds were investigated for the project. The objective was to determine their capacity to absorb high-frequency radiation in order to subsequently emit it at ranges more effective for solar cells, as well as the possibility of implementing these materials in the glass coating of solar panels. These compounds were used to develop the special glass for these photovoltaic applications. In this way, substituting the current glass of solar panels by the new product, an increase in energy efficiency was obtained.
By means of the "conversion of frequencies" produced by the glass, the radiation incident on the solar cells is more effective and gives rise to a significant increase in their efficiency (about 2-3 %), and which will have huge repercussion in the building industry.
This new technique will boost the production of clean energy without acoustic contamination and will avoid greenhouse effect gas emissions, besides being able to be used as a complement to other energy sources and provide great flexibility in its applications.
Amaia Portugal | EurekAlert!
How protons move through a fuel cell
22.06.2017 | Empa - Eidgenössische Materialprüfungs- und Forschungsanstalt
Fraunhofer IZFP acquires lucrative EU project for increasing nuclear power plant safety
21.06.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Zerstörungsfreie Prüfverfahren IZFP
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
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Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...
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