‘New and strange properties’ provide a boost to energy storage

MIT scientists have developed a class of liquid electrolyte with properties they say could open up new possibilities for improving the performance and stability of lithium batteries and supercapacitors.

Stitching together the grid of the future

A vision of a decentralized, renewable-powered electricity grid is being brought a step closer by scientists at the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Their project, Autonomous Energy Grids, aims to take an overarching look at the solutions that will power this grid of the future, and to fill any gaps that appear between them.

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One atom layer to ‘free the electrons’

Scientists from the University of Kansas say adding a layer of two-dimensional semiconductor molybdenum disulfide can greatly improve the performance of organic solar cells. The research could also inform efforts to engineer the interface between layers in hybrid organic cells.

Someone is building a heterojunction cell factory in North America

Swiss equipment supplier Meyer Burger has signed a contract to supply heterojunction cell manufacturing equipment to an unnamed North American manufacturer.

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REC Silicon lays off 100 at Washington polysilicon plant

Polysilicon maker REC Silicon has announced that it will lay off another 100 workers at its Moses Lake facility in Washington State, as the factory heads into long term shutdown.

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Waste heat is not cool, say scientists

Engineers at the University of Utah have developed a tiny device which they say could increase the performance of PV panels and other electronic devices by converting energy lost as heat back into electricity.

‘Turbocharging’ silicon PV: MIT scientists scratch the surface of singlet exciton fission

Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed a device they say could “turbocharge” a single-junction silicon PV cell, pushing the technology beyond its theoretical limit to efficiencies of 35% and higher.

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Battery scientists make a cracking observation

Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the U.S. used x-ray imaging to observe cracks forming in a solid state lithium battery, a discovery they say changes the understanding of performance of solid state batteries and which could lead to more durable systems.

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MIT works to refine the flow of promising perovskites

Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed an accelerated process for screening new perovskite compounds as they search for those with the potential to be used in high efficiency solar cells. According to MIT, the process speeds up the synthesis and analysis of new compounds by a factor of ten and has already highlighted two sets of materials worthy of further study.

Water, water everywhere, nor any drop to… split?

Researchers at Stanford University have developed a type of electrode which is highly resistant to salt corrosion, therefore allowing them to produce hydrogen using seawater. Applied at a larger scale, this development could potentially cut the cost of power-to-gas applications by greatly increasing the amount of water available.

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