Engineers have characterized the thermal energy conversion mechanism in the lattice of an advanced nanomaterial called chalcogenide perovskite and demonstrated its 'tunability'-- important for its potential use in solar energy generation
For solar cells to be widely used in the coming decades researchers must resolve two major challenges: increasing efficiency and lowering toxicity.
Solar energy works through a process that converts light into energy called the photovoltaic effect. Certain light sensitive materials when packaged together in a "cell" have the ability to convert energy from light into electricity.
Most of today's solar cells require a highly processed form of Silicon. The processing results in toxic effects on humans and the environment. According to an article published in AZO Materials in 2015, many strides have been made since the first solar cell was developed, but average efficiency rates are still well below 30 percent, with many cells barely reaching 10 percent efficiency.
Researchers have recently been working with a material?an emerging chalcogenide perovskite CaZrSe3?that has shown great potential for energy conversion applications because of its notable optical and electrical properties.
"These materials hold extreme promise for solar energy conversion applications," says Ganesh Balasubramanian, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Lehigh University's P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science. "One can potentially design them as solar thermoelectric materials that convert thermal energy from the sun to usable electric power."
Balasubramanian, working with postdoctoral student Eric Osei-Agyemang and undergraduate Challen Enninful Adu, have for the first time, revealed first-hand knowledge about the fundamental energy carrier properties of chalcogenide perovskite CaZrSe3. They have published their findings in NPJ Computational Materials in an article called "Ultralow lattice thermal conductivity of chalcogenide perovskite CaZrSe3 contributes to high thermoelectric figure of merit." This work compliments a recent article by the same team published in Advanced Theory and Simulations called "Doping and Anisotropy-Dependent Electronic Transport in Chalcogenide Perovskite CaZrSe3 for High Thermoelectric Efficiency."
"Together they provide a holistic look at the transport properties of these materials," says Balasubramanian. "They also demonstrate that chalcogenide perovskite CaZrSe3 can potentially be used for waste heat recovery or solar energy conversion to electricity."
To arrive at their results, the team performed quantum chemical calculations examining the electronic and lattice properties of these materials to derive useful material transport information.
The news that energy transport through advanced materials such as chalcogenides can be tuned by nano structuring should be welcomed by other researchers in the field, says Balasubramanian, bringing scientists closer to applying these techniques to achieve a solar energy production method that is cheaper, more efficient and less toxic.
Lori Friedman | EurekAlert!
The lightest electromagnetic shielding material in the world
02.07.2020 | Empa - Eidgenössische Materialprüfungs- und Forschungsanstalt
New materials of perovskite challenge the chemical intuition
02.07.2020 | Institute of Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences
A promising operating mode for the plasma of a future power plant has been developed at the ASDEX Upgrade fusion device at Max Planck Institute for Plasma...
Live event – July 1, 2020 - 11:00 to 11:45 (CET)
"Automation in Aerospace Industry @ Fraunhofer IFAM"
The Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM l Stade is presenting its forward-looking R&D portfolio for the first time at...
With an X-ray experiment at the European Synchrotron ESRF in Grenoble (France), Empa researchers were able to demonstrate how well their real-time acoustic monitoring of laser weld seams works. With almost 90 percent reliability, they detected the formation of unwanted pores that impair the quality of weld seams. Thanks to a special evaluation method based on artificial intelligence (AI), the detection process is completed in just 70 milliseconds.
Laser welding is a process suitable for joining metals and thermoplastics. It has become particularly well established in highly automated production, for...
A research team from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure of Dynamics (MPSD) and the University of Oxford has managed to drive a prototypical antiferromagnet into a new magnetic state using terahertz frequency light. Their groundbreaking method produced an effect orders of magnitude larger than previously achieved, and on ultrafast time scales. The team’s work has just been published in Nature Physics.
Magnetic materials have been a mainstay in computing technology due to their ability to permanently store information in their magnetic state. Current...
The Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula) takes only 100 milliseconds to trap its prey. Once their leaves, which have been transformed into snap traps, have...
02.07.2020 | Event News
19.05.2020 | Event News
07.04.2020 | Event News
02.07.2020 | Event News
02.07.2020 | Life Sciences
02.07.2020 | Life Sciences