Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Nanotechnology microscope boosts solar research

The microscope is equipped with a tiny metallic tip to see individual atoms, allowing precision better than a hundredth of a nanometer.
The microscope is equipped with a tiny metallic tip to see individual atoms, allowing precision better than a hundredth of a nanometer.

Abstract:
Queensland University of Technology (QUT) is home to a powerful, new microscope being used to develop efficient and cheap plastic solar cells to charge laptops and mobile phones.

Nanotechnology microscope boosts solar research

Brisbane, Australia | Posted on November 16th, 2011

The $1.5 million German-engineered scanning probe microscope is the only one of its kind in Queensland, with four others in Australia located in New South Wales.

Lead researcher Associate Professor Nunzio Motta said the microscope was equipped with a tiny metallic tip to see individual atoms, allowing precision better than a hundredth of a nanometer.

"We will be the only university in Queensland with a microscope like this in operation," he said.

"It will open up many exciting new research opportunities."

Professor Motta, a principal research fellow with the Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering, said the microscope would accelerate QUT's efforts to study new materials with atomic resolution.

QUT researchers have started using the microscope to improve plastic solar cells by mixing them with tiny tubes of highly-conductive carbon, called nanotubes, which are 100 times smaller than a strand of human hair.

"At the moment the plastic solar cells are quite inefficient, but they are already used in niche markets for very low power portable applications," Professor Motta said.

"We are aiming to improve the efficiency of these plastic solar cells by studying the microscopic structure of the material. If we can do that, the advantages would be enormous.

"Plastic solar cells could generate enough energy not only to recharge the batteries of laptops and mobiles, but even to obtain power from canopies on parking areas and on stadiums."

Professor Motta said the microscope was equipped with sensitive surface probes, including two kinds of atomic force microscopes, an X-ray electron spectrometer and an electron microscope.

Samples used in the microscope can be heated up to 1300C and gases introduced through a special valve system to test how surface atoms react in different environments.

To keep surfaces clean and to observe their atomic composition, the microscope is enclosed in a stainless steel evacuated vessel, where the pressure is similar to that found in outer space.

QUT researchers also will be using the microscope to create a new class of solar-powered nano-sensors capable of detecting pollution and monitoring the environment in remote areas.

The new microscope will be officially unveiled on November 24 at Gardens Point campus.

The microscope, which received $800,000 in funding from the Australian Research Council, will be managed within the QUT-based Australian Microscopy and Microanalysis Research Facility Linked Laboratory.

Professor Motta said scientists from a consortium of universities that helped fund the microscope would use it for research, including Flinders University, the University of Queensland, Griffith University and Roma Tor Vergata University in Italy.

The microscope will be moved to QUT's $230 million Science and Engineering Centre when it opens in 2012.

hat: Official unveiling of Ultra-High Vacuum and Scanning Probe Microscope
When: Thursday, November 24, 10.30am to 2pm
Where: QUT Gardens Point Campus, Old Government House and R-Block
Info: If interested in attending, please RSVP at 3138 1150

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Media contact:
Stephanie Harrington
QUT
media officer
61 3138 1150

Copyright © Queensland University of Technology (QUT)

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

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Harris & Harris Group Portfolio Company, HZO, Announces Partnerships with Dell and Motorola August 1st, 2015

Advances and Applications in Biosensing, Sensor Power, and Sensor R&D to be Covered at Sensors Global Summit August 1st, 2015

Kalam: versatility personified August 1st, 2015

Imaging

Take a trip through the brain July 30th, 2015

Publication on Atomic Force Microscopy based nanoscale IR Spectroscopy (AFM-IR) persists as a 2015 top downloaded paper July 29th, 2015

Short wavelength plasmons observed in nanotubes: Berkeley Lab researchers create Ludinger liquid plasmons in metallic SWNTs July 28th, 2015

Reshaping the solar spectrum to turn light to electricity: UC Riverside researchers find a way to use the infrared region of the sun's spectrum to make solar cells more efficient July 27th, 2015

Openings/New facilities/Groundbreaking/Expansion

QuantumSphere Completes State-of-the-Art Nanocatalyst Production Facility: Now Positioned to Capitalize on Commercial Validation and JDA with Casale, SA July 25th, 2015

Iran Nanotech China Center (INCC) Starts Work in Suzhou Industrial Park June 2nd, 2015

Government of Canada Strengthens Opportunities for Commercialization of Micro- and Nano-Coated Products at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology May 31st, 2015

SUNY Poly CNSE and NIOSH Launch Federal Nano Health and Safety Consortium: May 20th, 2015

Academic/Education

Pakistani Students Who Survived Terror Attack to Attend Weeklong “NanoDiscovery Institute” at SUNY Poly CNSE in Albany July 29th, 2015

Deben reports on the use of their CT500 in the X-ray microtomography laboratory at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia July 22nd, 2015

JPK reports on the use of SPM in the Messersmith Group at UC Berkeley looking at biologically inspired polymer adhesives. July 21st, 2015

Renishaw adds Raman analysis to Scanning Electron Microscopy at the University of Sydney, Australia July 9th, 2015

Discoveries

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Heating and cooling with light leads to ultrafast DNA diagnostics July 31st, 2015

Theoretical Physicists at Freie Universität Berlin Develop New Insights into Interface between Classical and Quantum Worlds July 31st, 2015

Controlling Dynamic Behavior of Carbon Nanosheets in Structures Made Possible July 30th, 2015

Announcements

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Harris & Harris Group Portfolio Company, HZO, Announces Partnerships with Dell and Motorola August 1st, 2015

Advances and Applications in Biosensing, Sensor Power, and Sensor R&D to be Covered at Sensors Global Summit August 1st, 2015

The National Space Society Pays Tribute to Dr. Kalam -- One Of Our Leading Lights Has Joined The Stars August 1st, 2015

Tools

Heating and cooling with light leads to ultrafast DNA diagnostics July 31st, 2015

Take a trip through the brain July 30th, 2015

Publication on Atomic Force Microscopy based nanoscale IR Spectroscopy (AFM-IR) persists as a 2015 top downloaded paper July 29th, 2015

Nanometrics Announces Upcoming Investor Events July 28th, 2015

Energy

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Springer and Tsinghua University Press present the second Nano Research Award: Paul Alivisatos of the University of California Berkeley receives the honor for outstanding contributions in nanoscience July 30th, 2015

Controlling Dynamic Behavior of Carbon Nanosheets in Structures Made Possible July 30th, 2015

March 2016; 6th Int'l Conference on Nanostructures in Iran July 29th, 2015

Solar/Photovoltaic

Transparent, electrically conductive network of encapsulated silver nanowires: A novel electrode for optoelectronics August 1st, 2015

Springer and Tsinghua University Press present the second Nano Research Award: Paul Alivisatos of the University of California Berkeley receives the honor for outstanding contributions in nanoscience July 30th, 2015

Reshaping the solar spectrum to turn light to electricity: UC Riverside researchers find a way to use the infrared region of the sun's spectrum to make solar cells more efficient July 27th, 2015

Rice University finding could lead to cheap, efficient metal-based solar cells: Plasmonics study suggests how to maximize production of 'hot electrons' July 22nd, 2015

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