Researchers at the University of British Columbia and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have discovered a new way to optimize electron transfer in semi-conductors used in solar fuel solutions.
The finding, published today in Nature Chemistry, could have a big impact on devices that convert sunlight into electricity and fuel.
Researchers have already shown that the efficiency of electron transfer at semi-conductor interfaces depends on the distance the electron has to travel. The new finding shows that the efficiency of the transfer also depends on the type of chemical bonds--or the bridge--that the electron travels through along the way.
"Now we can design molecules to act as a gate and keep electrons moving forward in one direction and not reverse their direction," says UBC chemist and chemical engineer Curtis Berlinguette, senior author on the paper.
"If electrons go in the wrong direction, we lose much of the sun's energy as heat before it can be converted into electricity or fuel."
The research also has ramifications in how we view electron transfer in biological systems.
Silvia Moreno-Garcia | EurekAlert!
Barely scratching the surface: A new way to make robust membranes
13.12.2018 | DOE/Argonne National Laboratory
Topological material switched off and on for the first time
11.12.2018 | ARC Centre of Excellence in Future Low-Energy Electronics Technologies
What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...
A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.
The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...
A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.
Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...
Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...
What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.
Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...
12.12.2018 | Event News
10.12.2018 | Event News
06.12.2018 | Event News
13.12.2018 | Life Sciences
13.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
13.12.2018 | Earth Sciences