My watch list
my.chemeurope.com  
Login  

Marine plant replacement for platinum in solar cells

05-Dec-2013

An international research team has shown that that the power conversion efficiency of sea tangle extract is comparable to platinum in solar cell electrodes.

Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs) are quickly becoming a widespread and affordable alternative to photovoltaic solar cells. The electrode material in DSCs is traditionally platinum, which shows impressive performance, but isn’t environmentally friendly and incurs high production costs.

The team of scientists from China, Japan and Switzerland investigated sea tangle, a common marine plant, as a suitable source of raw materials for DSCs. Their results showed that the naturally-sourced materials demonstrated improved power conversion efficiency over previously tested natural dyes, to the point where they are comparable to those of synthetic, more expensive materials.

The researchers simultaneously extracted natural dye, iodine and carbon materials from sea tangle to act as the sensitiser, electron shuttle and counter electrode catalyst respectively, in a hybrid sea tangle device. They tested the device against a platinum counter electrode and found that it showed similar electrocatalytic activity. At this point, the power conversion efficiency of the device is not any better than platinum electrodes, but scope to advance its performance paves the way to a more eco-friendly type of DSC.

 

Facts, background information, dossiers
More about Dalian University Of Technology
  • News

    Bending - but not breaking - in search of new materials

    Making a paper airplane in school used to mean trouble. Today it signals a promising discovery in materials science research that could help next-generation technology - like wearable energy storage devices - get off the ground. Researchers at Drexel University and Dalian University of Tech ... more

More about Royal Society of Chemistry
  • News

    New coating is self-defence for seeds

    Scientists in Switzerland have developed a protective coating for seeds that poisons pests with cyanide when they bite into it. The coating is a system of two layers and only becomes toxic when the layers are mixed, eliminating the problem of environmental contamination that is associated w ... more

    Using bacteria to make electrodes

    Scientists in France have produced hematite using a bacterial pathway for use as an electrode material in Li-ion technologies. Currently, most commercial electrode materials for Li-ion technologies are prepared using the ceramic method, which requires long heating periods at high temperatur ... more

    A jelly-based fuel cell

    An international team of researchers has used gelatin as their starting material to make a fuel cell catalyst. The team used gelatin to make doped-carbon electrocatalysts that could be a potential replacement for platinum in fuel cells. To make the catalyst, they mixed iron and magnesium in ... more

  • Videos

    Royal Society of Chemistry – About us

    With more than 51,000 members and an international publishing and knowledge business we are the UK’s professional body for chemical scientists, supporting and representing our members and bringing together chemical scientists from all over the world. more

    A career in toxicology

    Hear from RSC member Vicki Stone talk about her role as a Nanotoxicologist. more

    When Food met Pharma: Delivery Strategies for Nutraceuticals

    With growing prevalence of lifestyle-associated diseases, including obesity, Type II diabetes and cardiovascular disease, there is an urgent need and demand to try to prevent the onset of these diseases within our growing population. Nutraceuticals, along with appropriate diet and exercise, ... more

  • Companies

    Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC)

    The RSC is a leading international publisher of highly regarded journals and books in the chemical sciences. The RSC is also the professional body for chemists with a global membership of over 46,000. more

Your browser is not current. Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 does not support some functions on Chemie.DE