Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors



Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


android tablet pc

Home > Press > UCF Secures $7.5 Million Research Grant to Improve Hybrid Photovoltaic Solar Cells

Photo: Jacque Brund

Winston Schoenfeld, a professor in CREOL, the College of Optics and Photonics at UCF, will lead the research.
Photo: Jacque Brund Winston Schoenfeld, a professor in CREOL, the College of Optics and Photonics at UCF, will lead the research.

Abstract:
The University of Central Florida has been awarded a $7.5 million research grant to study ways to make photovoltaic solar cells more efficient in capturing and converting solar energy into electricity and less costly to manufacture.

UCF Secures $7.5 Million Research Grant to Improve Hybrid Photovoltaic Solar Cells

Orlando, FL | Posted on October 29th, 2009

The research can lead to ways to produce highly flexible solar panels, which could be manufactured in larger quantities and used to support a variety of solar products, spanning from solar roof shingles to portable energy.

The grant, from New York-based Prime Source Initiative, Inc., will be awarded in $1.5 million allotments per year for five years.

The research will be led by Winston Schoenfeld, a professor in CREOL, The College of Optics and Photonics at UCF. He will work on methods to increase the efficiency between the organic material that harvests the sun's energy and the inorganic semiconductor nanostructures within a hybrid photovoltaic solar cell.

"All-organic solar cells are effective at absorbing light and collecting energy from the sun, but they aren't efficient at converting this into electricity," Schoenfeld explained.

Hybrid solar cells use an inorganic semiconductor (such as silicon) to increase electric output. But how to efficiently and economically integrate the organic and the inorganic components of the hybrid solar cell is a challenge and hasn't been widely studied.

Schoenfeld will develop the inorganic, nanostructured semiconductor backbone of the solar cell. The project's co-researcher, Andre Gesquiere, a professor in UCF's Nanotechnology Science Center and the Chemistry Department, will lead the organic, polymer research components of the project.

"Once the light is absorbed in the polymer, excitons are created that must be separated. If you don't separate them, they'll just recombine and you lose that energy," Schoenfeld said. "So we are using inorganic nanostructures that act as 'transport highways' to allow an efficient way for excitons to be separated and transferred into electricity."

The research will seek to answer questions such as how close together and how long the nanostructures should be made within the solar cell. Researchers also will attempt to increase the absorption capability of the organic material so that more of the solar spectrum can be harvested.

Schoenfeld cautioned that while the research goal is to identify efficient solar devices in the laboratory, the discoveries have to meet the demands of deployment into the marketplace.

"We have to think of the constraints of the end product. Will it be expensive to manufacture? Will the end-product be able to capture the aesthetic properties that will actually sell? Is there enough demand in other geographic areas? These are all factors that drive what products can eventually emerge from the laboratory."

Schoenfeld said this research project will emphasize collaboration with other researchers.

"A large grant can spawn three or four researchers to come together and go after challenging multi-disciplinary ideas, bringing vision into reality," Schoenfeld said. "The real value in this grant will be the ability to create these new collaborative connections, putting UCF in a unique position to make significant progress in the area of photovoltaic research."

Prime Source Initiative is based in New York with a real estate affiliation in Florida. Established in 1974, the supply chain company has expanded into humanitarian efforts to include this first-of-its kind research grant to fund photovoltaic research in hopes of creating more energy efficient communities.

####

About University of Central Florida
UCF Stands for Opportunity: The University of Central Florida is a metropolitan research university that ranks as the 3rd largest in the nation with more than 53,500 students. UCF's first classes were offered in 1968. The university offers impressive academic and research environments that power the region's economic development. UCF's culture of opportunity is driven by our diversity, Orlando environment, history of entrepreneurship and our youth, relevance and energy.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Kimberly Lewis
News & Information
407-823-1637

Copyright © University of Central Florida

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Renishaw receives Queen's Award for spectroscopy developments November 25th, 2014

JPK reports on the use of AFM and the CellHesion module to study plant cells at the University of Queensland November 25th, 2014

Vegetable oil ingredient key to destroying gastric disease bacteria: In mice, therapeutic nanoparticles dampen H. pylori bacteria and inflammation that lead to ulcers and gastric cancer November 25th, 2014

Research yields material made of single-atom layers that snap together like Legos November 25th, 2014

Announcements

Renishaw receives Queen's Award for spectroscopy developments November 25th, 2014

JPK reports on the use of AFM and the CellHesion module to study plant cells at the University of Queensland November 25th, 2014

Vegetable oil ingredient key to destroying gastric disease bacteria: In mice, therapeutic nanoparticles dampen H. pylori bacteria and inflammation that lead to ulcers and gastric cancer November 25th, 2014

Research yields material made of single-atom layers that snap together like Legos November 25th, 2014

Energy

Lawrence Livermore researchers develop efficient method to produce nanoporous metals November 25th, 2014

Research yields material made of single-atom layers that snap together like Legos November 25th, 2014

Blu-ray disc can be used to improve solar cell performance: Data storage pattern transferred to solar cell increases light absorption November 25th, 2014

UO-industry collaboration points to improved nanomaterials: University of Oregon microscope puts spotlight on the surface structure of quantum dots for designing new solar devices November 20th, 2014

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Renishaw receives Queen's Award for spectroscopy developments November 25th, 2014

A*STAR SIMTech wins international award for breaking new ground in actuators: SIMTech invention can be used in an array of industries, and is critical for next generation ultra-precision systems November 24th, 2014

SUNY Poly Student Awarded Fellowship with the U.S. Department of Energy's Postgraduate Research Program: Ph.D. Candidate Accepts Postmaster's Appointment To Conduct Research At Albany NanoTech Complex November 13th, 2014

MEMS Industry Group's 10th Annual Executive Conference Showcases Rapid Innovation in MEMS/Sensors: Emphasizes Spirit of Collaboration, Supporting First Open-Source Algorithm Community, New Standardization Efforts November 10th, 2014

Alliances/Partnerships/Distributorships

New research project supports internationalisation in nano-research: Launch of new “Baltic Sea Network” November 22nd, 2014

UO-industry collaboration points to improved nanomaterials: University of Oregon microscope puts spotlight on the surface structure of quantum dots for designing new solar devices November 20th, 2014

A novel method for identifying the body’s ‘noisiest’ networks November 19th, 2014

Field-emission plug-and-play solution for microwave electron guns: To simplify the electron emission mechanism involved in microwave electron guns, a team of researchers has created and demonstrated a field-emission plug-and-play solution based on ultrananocrystalline diamond November 18th, 2014

Solar/Photovoltaic

Research yields material made of single-atom layers that snap together like Legos November 25th, 2014

Blu-ray disc can be used to improve solar cell performance: Data storage pattern transferred to solar cell increases light absorption November 25th, 2014

UO-industry collaboration points to improved nanomaterials: University of Oregon microscope puts spotlight on the surface structure of quantum dots for designing new solar devices November 20th, 2014

Eight19 secures £1m funding: Investment to develop production technology, and expand commercial activities for organic photovoltaics November 19th, 2014

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More












ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2014 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE