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Center for Energy: News of the Day
  1. Historic space weather could clarify what's next
    Scientists have discovered an underlying repeatable pattern in how space weather activity changes with the solar cycle - having analysed solar activity for the last half century.

  2. Converting carbon dioxide into methane or ethane selectively
    Researchers have developed high-efficiency photocatalysts that convert carbon dioxide into methane or ethane with graphene-covered reduced titanium dioxide. The finding is expected to be utilized in the carbon dioxide reduction and recycling industries.

  3. Insight into loss processes in perovskite solar cells enables efficiency improvements
    In perovskite solar cells, charge carriers are mainly lost through recombination occurring at interface defect sites. In contrast, recombination at defect sites within the perovskite layer does not limit the performance of the solar cells at present. Teams from the University of Potsdam and the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) were able to reach this interesting conclusion through extremely accurate quantitative measurements on 1 cm2 perovskite cells using photoluminescence.
    Silicon-based, tandem photovoltaic modules can compete in solar market
    The dominant existing solar technology -- silicon -- is more than 90 percent of the way to its theoretical efficiency limit. More efficient technologies will be more expensive. New research identifies the efficiency vs. cost target.

  4. Technique to easily fabricate ceramic films used as OPV inter-layers developed
    Researchers developed a technique for coating Zinc related oxide (ZnOx, ZnOHx) simply by depositing the films in a solution process using the Metal Organic Decomposition method at ambient temperature and pressure without heating. They also demonstrated that their thin films produced by this technique were useful as buffer layers for OPV cells and that the films achieved a power conversion efficiency equivalent to that of ZnO thin films produced by conventional methods involving sintering.

  5. And then there was (more) light: Researchers boost performance quality of perovskites
    Scientists report that a prototype semiconductor thin-film has performed even better than today's best solar cell materials at emitting light.

  6. Europe may thrive on renewable energy despite unpredictable weather
    Researchers have shown how long-term weather patterns affect wind and solar renewable energy technologies across Europe. The work suggests that despite the unpredictable nature of wind and solar energy, the European power system can comfortably generate at least 35 percent of its electricity using these renewables alone without major impacts on prices or system stability.

  7. A new catalyst for water splitting that is the best of both worlds
    Taking water and ripping it apart into hydrogen and oxygen could form the basis of artificial photosynthetic devices that could ultimately power homes and businesses. However, catalysts, including those used to 'split' water, have either worked well but are expensive and unstable, or are affordable and stable, but don't work as well. Now, researchers report a new catalyst that is really the best of both worlds.
    States boost renewable energy and development when utilities adopt renewable standards
    States that require utilities to increase renewable energy see expansion of renewable energy facilities and generation -- including wind and other renewable sources, but especially solar -- according to new research.

  8. New battery could store wind and solar electricity affordably and at room temperature
    A new type of flow battery that involves a liquid metal more than doubled the maximum voltage of conventional flow batteries and could lead to affordable storage of renewable power.



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