HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Blogs
Blog

Researchers Extract Plant Material for Use in Solar-Energy Harvesting

NO RATINGS
1 saves
View Comments: Newest First|Oldest First|Threaded View
Page 1/2  >  >>
Cabe Atwell
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Natural fit
Cabe Atwell   5/24/2014 1:41:32 AM
NO RATINGS
Bring on the bio-batteries! Everything organic will soon become a 'Coppertop.'

Matrix confirmed.

 

Jack.L
User Rank
Silver
Re: Natural fit
Jack.L   7/31/2013 10:39:53 AM
NO RATINGS
Current technology using multi-junction cells in well into the 40+% conversion range.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Undestanding the mechanism
Elizabeth M   7/17/2013 5:40:28 AM
NO RATINGS
You're right, William K., there are a lot of unknowns with this and questions of viability that won't be answered until it comes out of the lab.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Undestanding the mechanism
William K.   7/16/2013 9:34:48 PM
NO RATINGS
This really is a great discovery because it shows that they have obtained an adequate understanding of the actual mechanism so that they can obtain electrical energy directly.That portion is awsome. Now the challenge will be to enhance the process so that it is scaleable up to useful levels. After that, the remaining concerns would be the process lifetime and moving it to a commercially worthwhile product. Just because something works, even works well, does not mean that it can be a commercially viable thing. It might simply cost to much, but we don't know yet.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Natural fit
Elizabeth M   7/16/2013 4:24:15 AM
NO RATINGS
Thanks for that perspective, etmax. I completely understand where you're coming from, and you're right, longevity would be a tricky issue here. I think the truth about efficiency is somehwere in the middle of the researchers' claim and Wikipedia's info, but I suppose it will take testing and use of this technology to get to the truth. I still think it's quite promising, as you point out.

etmax
User Rank
Gold
Re: Natural fit
etmax   7/15/2013 6:02:00 AM
NO RATINGS
I agree Elizabeth, the other thing is that if it's a chemical process rather that drawing ingots slicing slivers and etching microscopic structures I'd say that there is an opprotunity perhaps to make them so cheaply that you cover everything. The downside of biodegradable is of course longevity. In a plant the whoile process is continually renewed where as in a man-made panel the lifetime may be only a year or 2. Still if they cost $1 per kW that may not matter. BTW, I think probably it's not so much hyperbole on the part of the researcher but rather the narrow focus of their claim was not obvious to the reporter. I must say without a wonderful resource like Wikipedia I wouldn't have been able to pursue my hunch.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Natural fit
Elizabeth M   7/15/2013 5:22:59 AM
NO RATINGS
I came a bit late to these comments so now I'm seeing yours, karl. So it seems that researchesr are not exaggerating and the figure is 100 percent efficiency for converting sunlight into energy? I think we can all agree this research provides an interesting prospect for organic solar cells and has some real potential to benefit their development. Thanks to everyone for bringing up these important points!

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Natural fit
Elizabeth M   7/15/2013 5:18:57 AM
NO RATINGS
Interesting observation, etmax. So it seems like we are catching a researcher in a bit of hyperbole. I think perhaps the greater benefit here is the organic nature of the material--better for the environment. And perhaps with engineering researchers can achieve even greater efficiency.

etmax
User Rank
Gold
Re: Natural fit
etmax   7/13/2013 5:26:17 AM
NO RATINGS
You have summed up something that is said too infrequently very well.

Newel Stephens
User Rank
Silver
Re: Natural fit
Newel Stephens   7/12/2013 2:13:30 PM
NO RATINGS
Sometimes we can learn a lot from nature, but nature's way of doing things is not always the best way for humans to achieve the same purpose.  That is why we have airplanes instead of ornithopters.  Flapping wings work well for birds but would be way to complicated for a human-built flying machine.  The question will be if this process can improve upon the efficiency of our current solar cells, and I think it will take a lot of research and development to get there.

Page 1/2  >  >>
Partner Zone
More Blogs
With major product releases coming from big names like Sony, Microsoft, and Samsung, and big investments by companies like Facebook, 2015 could be the year that virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) finally pop. Here's take a look back at some of the technologies that got us here (for better and worse).
Good engineering designs are those that work in the real world; bad designs are those that don’t. If we agree to set our egos aside and let the real world be our guide, we can resolve nearly any disagreement.
The Industrial Internet of Things is bringing a previously reluctant process industry into the wireless fold. The ability to connect smart sensors to the Internet has spiked the demand for wireless devices in process manufacturing, according to the new study from ARC Advisory Group.
Enterprising Tesla Model S owner Steve Sasman seems to have figured out a way of recouping some of the cost on his car by renting the trunk out on AirBnB, the room/house rental website.
Everyone has had the experience of trying to scrape the last of the peanut butter or mayonnaise from the bottom of a glass jar without getting your hand sticky. Inventor Ron Jidmar thinks he has a solution to all of that nonsense with a flexible jar design that can be squeezed with one hand to lift contents from the bottom to the top of a jar or container, leaving the other hand free to scoop the contents out cleanly.
Design News Webinar Series
12/11/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
12/10/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
11/19/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
2/25/2015 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Jan 26 - 30, IPv6 for Micros – Hands-On
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  67


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Last Archived Class
Sponsored by Stratasys
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2015 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service