New lig in town: Renewable hybrid electrode based on lignin confined on reduced graphene oxide


A renewable hybrid electrode consisting of lignin nanocrystals confined on reduced graphene oxide (RGO) is developed for energy storage materials.

Degradation discovery could extend solar cell lifetime

Air exposure causes incorporation of gas molecules into the spiro-MeOTAD layer.

Spiro-MeOTAD shows surprising behaviour in detailed OIST study.

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Molecule alignment affects solar cell performance

This shows molecules in face-on orientation inside organic solar cell. Image from NC State University. Artist: Peter Allen.

Researchers find that energy is transferred more efficiently inside of complex, 3D organic solar cells when the donor molecules align face-on.

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Tracking nanoscale changes during lithium ion battery operation

These images show how the surface morphology and internal microstructure of an individual tin particle changes from the fresh state through the initial lithiation and delithiation cycle (charge/discharge). Most notable are the expansion in overall particle volume during lithiation, and reduction in volume and pulverization during delithiation. The cross-sectional images reveal that delithiation is incomplete, with the core of the particle retaining lithium surround by a layer of pure tin. Image courtesy of Brookhaven National Laboratory.

First 3D nanoscale observations of microstructural degradation during battery charge-discharge cycles.

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A Fossil Fuel Free World

Illustration depicting how the leaf’s photosynthetic machinery for processing carbon dioxide, water and sunlight to solar fuels such as carbon monoxide, methane and methanol, is integrated into the nanoworld. Graphical illustration courtesy of Chexi Qian.

Professor Ozin explores the repercussions of giving up our fossil fuel addiction.

Outdoor operational stability of polymer solar modules


ITO-free large-area organic solar cell modules were operated in outdoor conditions over 1 year simultaneously in India and Denmark.

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Deuterium changes the electronic properties of organic solar cells

Conceptual drawing shows a flexible organic photovoltaic made from an acceptor of PCBM (buckyball with earth) and the donor of deuterated conducting polymer. The polymer blend in the device (bottom) will harvest the sunlight to generate electrical power. (carbon:blue; sulfur: yellow; hydrogen: white; deuterium: purple). Image: Christopher Rouleau, CNMS.

Multidisciplinary ORNL team discovers unexpected effect of heavy hydrogen in organic solar cells.

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The next step towards large-scale artificial photosynthesis

Nano-sized crystals of cobalt oxide, an Earth-abundant catalyst, have been shown to be able to effectively carry out the critical photosynthetic reaction of splitting water molecules. Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt, Berkeley Lab

Berkeley Lab researchers identify key intermediate steps in artificial photosynthesis reaction.

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Seeing the wood for the trees: A new technique for the study of biomass pyrolysis


Spatiotemporally resolved diffuse reflectance in situ spectroscopy (STR-DRiSP) reveals the kinetics of biomass pyrolysis.

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Useful Uncertainty Causes Ultrafast Charge Transfer in Bulk Heterojunction Solar Cells

Solar cell installation by Konarka, Inc.

In a Review Article in the Advanced Materials 25th anniversary series, Nobel Laureate Alan J. Heeger discusses BHJ solar cell operation and how efficiencies can top 20%.