Tuesday, 21 September 2010

American institute of physics indicates us more productive Selenium solar cells

Did you know that many scientists would like to discover light-catching
elements in order to convert more of the sun's energy into carbon-free
electrical energy?
A new analysis announced in the magazine Applied Physics Letters in August
2010 (published by the American Institute of Physics), describes how solar
power could potentially be harvested by using oxide materials that include
the element selenium. A team at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in
Berkeley, California, embedded selenium in zinc oxide, a relatively cheap
material that could make more successful use of the sun's power.

The team identified that even a relatively small level of selenium, just 9 %
of the mostly zinc-oxide base, dramatically enhanced the material's
productivity in absorbing light.

The primary author of this analysis, Marie Mayer (a 4th-year University of
California, Berkeley doctoral student) suggests that photo-electrochemical
water splitting, that signifies using energy from the sun to cleave water
into hydrogen and oxygen gases, could probably be the most interesting
future application for her efforts. Using this reaction is key to the
eventual production of zero-emission hydrogen powered automobiles, which
hypothetically will run only on water and sunlight.


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