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ENERGY NEWS
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€6.2M Project Aims for 25% Efficiency from Thin-Film Solar Cells
STUTTGART, Germany, June 29, 2015 — A consortium of 11 European universities, research facilities and businesses has set out to create thin-film solar cells to rival the efficiency and cost of multicrystalline technology. The three-and-a-half-year project is supported by €4.6 million (about $5.2 million) from the European Union's Horizon 2020 program and €1.6 million (about $1.8 million) from Switzerland's State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation. It will focus on increasing the efficiency of...

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Brimrose Wins $1.7M in Grants for Directed-Energy Research, Spectral Sensor Development
SPARKS, Md., June 15, 2015 — Brimrose Technology Corp. has been awarded $1.7 million in grants for development of a spectral sensor and optics for a directed-energy device. The grants were awarded under Phase II of the federal Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)...
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Reflective Roof Cooler than Ambient Air Temperature
SYDNEY, June 2, 2015 — A potential new roofing material stays cooler than the ambient air temperature, even under the midsummer Australian sun. Comprising a coated polymer stack on a silver thin film, the surface exhibited nearly 100 percent solar reflectance and...

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Sunlight Produces Hydrogen via ‘Artificial Leaf’
BERKELEY, Calif., Dec. 31, 2014 — A flat mesh of light-absorbing semiconductor nanowires can split water molecules, producing hydrogen gas that could be used for fuel. The “artificial leaf” was developed by a team led by professor Dr. Peidong Yang of University of...
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QD Solution Provides Spray-On Solar Power
TORONTO, Dec. 9, 2014 — A technique akin to spray painting could be used to create a new wave of solar cells. A team from the University of Toronto’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the IBM Canada Research and Development Center developed...

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Blu-ray Disc Pattern ‘Nearly Optimized’ for Solar Absorption
EVANSTON, Ill., Dec. 1, 2014 — The pattern of information written on a Blu-ray disc, regardless of what it is, could lead to better operating solar cells. A team at Northwestern University has discovered a way to improve solar cell performance with the help of such discs....
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Coating Reflects Sunlight, Radiates Heat to Cool Buildings
STANDFORD, Calif., Nov. 26, 2014 — A thin-film coating has the potential to cool buildings by simultaneously radiating heat from inside and reflecting sunlight. The photonic radiative cooling material reflects incoming sunlight (the sun’s reflection seen on the panel)...

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Antonio Luque Receives $60,000 Boer Award
NEWARK, Del., Nov. 20, 2014 — Antonio Luque will receive the 2015 Karl W. Boer Solar Energy Medal of Merit, along with a $60,000 cash prize. Antonio Luque is the recipient of the 2015 Karl W. Boer Solar Energy Medal of Merit, an award named for Boer, a scientist from the...
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Young Researchers Honored for Solar, Optics Technologies
BALTIMORE, Nov. 20, 2014 — Solar technologies and cellulose-based optics were among the research efforts honored by the Outstanding Young Scientist (OYS) and Outstanding Young Engineer (OYE) awards from the Maryland Academy of Sciences and Maryland Science Center. The...

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Providence Photonics Receives EPA Grant for Flare Monitor Commercialization
WASHINGTON, Nov. 17, 2014 — Providence Photonics in Baton Rouge, La., has been awarded a $300,000 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to commercialize its flare efficiency monitoring system. The system allows...
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Laser Detects Methane Leaks
FREIBURG, Germany, Nov. 13, 2014 — A new laser system can detect biogas and natural gas that escape through leaks in gas lines or fermenters at biogas plants. A team led by the Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM developed the system, which can reveal...

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Sunlight, Nanoparticles Break Down Pollutants
WEST BENGAL, India, Nov. 6, 2014 — A class of pollutants that negatively affect hormones can be broken down using nanoparticles and sunlight. Researchers from the Center for Advanced Materials at the Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science developed the method, which...
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Solar Cell Fabrication Technique Uses Impure Silicon
TRONDHEIM, Norway, Oct. 30, 2014 — Less-expensive raw materials in lower quantities could mean fewer production steps in manufacturing solar panels — and potentially lower energy consumption. A team from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) has...

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QD Vision Wins Green Chemistry Challenge
LEXINGTON, Mass., Oct. 20, 2014 — QD Vision Inc. has received the 2014 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award for its approach to quantum dot technology for energy-efficient commercial display and lighting products. The designation, awarded by the U.S. Environmental...
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Magnetic Mirror Reflects Light in New Ways
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., Oct. 16, 2014 — A new magnetic mirror uses non-metallic metamaterial properties to reflect IR light. Scientists at Sandia National Laboratories developed the magnetic mirror by placing nanoscale antennas at or very near the mirror’s surface, thereby...

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Carbon Nanotube-Based Lights More Efficient than LEDs
SENDAI, Japan, Oct. 15, 2014 — A new carbon nanotube-based light source touts power consumption that is about a hundred times lower than that of an LED. A team from Tohoku University developed the new light source, which uses around 0.1 W for every hour of operation. Carbon...
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Solar Cell Stores Energy, Too
COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 7, 2014 — Solar cells could soon double as rechargeable batteries, greatly enhancing their power and efficiency. Developed by a team at The Ohio State University, a new hybrid device combines a battery with a solar cell. The researchers said the new...

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Nanopillars Enhance Solar Efficiency
AMHERST, Mass., Oct. 3, 2014 — Mimicking the highly efficient light-harvesting structures of blades of grass could boost power-conversion efficiency in solar panels. “For decades, scientists and engineers have placed great effort in trying to control the morphology of...
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Thermophotovoltaic System Exhibits Better Absorption
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Oct. 1, 2014 — A 2-D photonic crystal could prove key in advancing the absorption and use of solar energy. The new material, developed by researchers at MIT, is a metallic-dielectric crystal that absorbs sunlight from a wide range of angles and can withstand...

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Ultrathin Films Color Rough, Flexible Surfaces
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Oct. 2, 2014 — Researchers can now “paint” rough, flexible surfaces through the phenomenon of thin-film interference. A team at Harvard University demonstrated that ultrathin optical coatings can display strong optical interference effects on...
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Gold Nanoclusters Enhance Solar Power
LONDON, Ontario, Canada, Sept. 30, 2014 — Gold nanoclusters could improve solar cell performance by more than 10 percent. A nanocluster made of just 144 gold atoms was used as a building block in the creation of a flexible network of plasmonic antennas that attracted extra light to solar...

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Plessey Expands with In-House LED Assembly Line
PLYMOUTH, England, Sept. 29, 2014 — Plessey is expanding its facility here to include a new LED assembly line. This addition will allow the company to focus on its high-brightness LEDs for solid-state lighting and sensing. The expansion will cut production time and enable...
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Inorganic Semiconductors Guide New Optoelectronic Devices
SEOUL, South Korea, Sept. 22, 2014 — Inorganic compound semiconductors could potentially replace those developed with organic materials. A research team from Seoul National University (SNU) has grown gallium nitride (GaN) microrods on graphene substrates, which may ultimately...

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New Polymer Mix Crafts More Efficient Solar Cells
CHICAGO and LEMONT, Ill., Sept. 22, 2014 — An enhanced polymer-based device could boost solar power generation and improve the efficiency of solar cells. The new device, developed by a team from the University of Chicago’s Institute for Molecular Engineering in collaboration with...
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Tunable MoS2 Light Emitters Make Better Chips
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Sept. 23, 2014 — MoS2-based light emitters have the potential to help create powerful, yet energy efficient optoelectronic chips. A team at MIT has developed a new theoretical framework for building optoelectronic chips using MoS2 (molybdenum disulfide) as...






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