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New gold nano cluster technology improves solar cell performance

New gold nano cluster technology improves solar cell performance

Using approximately 10,000 times less gold than in previous studies, researchers from Western University improve solar power performance with new "gold Nano cluster" technology.
Scientists at Western University have discovered that a small molecule created with just 144 atoms of gold can increase solar cell performance by more than 10 per cent.  Fanchini, the Canada Research Chair in Carbon-based Nanomaterials and Nano-optoelectronics, says the new technology could easily be fast-tracked and integrated into prototypes of solar panels in one to two years and solar-powered phones in as little as five years.
"The Canadian business industry already has tremendous know-how in solar manufacturing," says Fanchini. "Our invention is modular, an add-on to the existing production process, so we anticipate a working prototype very quickly." Making nanoplasmonic enhancements, Fanchini and his team use "gold nanoclusters" as building blocks to create a flexible network of antennae on more traditional solar panels to attract an increase of light.
 "Picture an extremely delicate fishnet of gold," explains Fanchini explains, noting that the antennae are so miniscule they are unseen even with a conventional optical microscope. "The fishnet catches the light emitted by the sun and draws it into the active region of the solar cell." According to Fanchini, the spectrum of light reflected by gold is centered on the yellow color and matches the light spectrum of the sun making it superior for such antennae as it greatly amplifies the amount of sunlight going directly into the device.  "Gold is very robust, resilient to oxidization and not easily damaged, making it the perfect material for long-term use," says Fanchini. "And gold can also be recycled."
Source: Sci-tech daily                                                                                                                                                               




 

 

29-09-2014 10:38 AM


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