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Shall they go with the flow?

If and how a polymeric solution will flow in a nanoporous material

18-Dec-2020

Printing with an ink-jet printer is part of daily life, but the same technology finds more complex applications in electronics and in protein separation. These applications, considered futuristic only few decades ago, rely on the quality of the printing process which depends on the flow of the ...

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The Missing Step in the Water Warmup: First Bend and then Turn

New insights into how and how quickly the energy stored in a bent water molecule is dissipated into heat

11-Dec-2020

The water on Earth makes our planet inhabitable. It absorbs the Sun’s energy and releases it in the form of heat. An international research collaboration headed by the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) has now shown how and how fast the stored energy in the water molecules is ...

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Swirl power: how gentle body movement will charge your mobile phone

Scientists have found a way to generate electricity from nylon, raising hopes that the clothes on our backs will become an important source of energy

10-Nov-2020

Researchers have found a way to produce nylon fibres that are smart enough to produce electricity from simple body movement, paving the way for smart clothes that will monitor our health through miniaturised sensors and charge our devices without any external power source. This discovery - a ...

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A question of affinity

How to design organic solar cell materials

29-Oct-2020

A collaboration of scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Germany and the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia have recently scrutinized organic solar cells and derived design rules for light-absorbing dyes that can help to ...

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How charges move in solar cells

An understanding of microscopic processes in perovskite solar cells can lead to increased efficiency

22-Sep-2020

When the sun rises, a complex dance begins in perovskite solar cells - a type of solar cell that can supplement or replace existing silicon solar cells in the future: Electrons are supplied with energy by light and move. Where electrons move, they leave holes. At the same time, ions move around ...

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Painting with crystals

12-Aug-2020

Semiconductors made of organic materials, e.g. for light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) and solar cells, could replace or supplement silicon-based electronics in the future. The efficiency of such devices depends crucially on the quality of thin layers of such organic semiconductors. These layers are ...

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Microscopic structures could further improve perovskite solar cells

Electrons in the fast lane

06-Jul-2020

Solar cells based on perovskite compounds could soon make electricity generation from sunlight even more efficient and cheaper. The laboratory efficiency of these perovskite solar cells already exceeds that of the well-known silicon solar cells. An international team led by Stefan Weber from the ...

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When ions rattle their cage

How the investigation of ion oscillations can lead to better batteries

07-Apr-2020

Electrolytes play a key role in many areas: They are crucial for the storage of energy in our body as well as in batteries. In order to release energy, ions - charged atoms - must move in a liquid such as water. Until now the precise mechanism by which they move through the atoms and molecules of ...

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Harnessing the rain for hydrovoltaics

06-Apr-2020

Drops of water falling on or sliding over surfaces may leave behind traces of electrical charge, causing the drops to charge themselves. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz have now begun a detailed investigation into this phenomenon that accompanies us in ...

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How to remove dirt easily

When and how self-cleaning of superhydrophobic surfaces works

03-Apr-2020

Dirt is not always dirt. Some dirt, such as dust, adheres only slightly to surfaces. But there is also dirt, such as dried paint, which sticks strongly. How can the adhesive properties of a surface be adjusted so that different types of dirt do not stick to it? This knowledge is essential to ...

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