Energy

Solar Power

Access the latest advancements, technical briefs, and trending applications in solar power generation systems, essential to design engineers working in the renewable energy sectors.

Latest Briefs & News

Question of the Week : Electronics & Computers
Will Stretchable, Printable Solar Cells Catch On?

A Rice University lab is making solar cells that are stretchable, printable, and paintable. Watch the demo on Tech Briefs TV.

This week's Question: Will Stretchable, Printable Solar Cells Catch On?

Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

News : Aerospace
'Invisible Glass’ Takes First Prize in ‘Create the Future’ Contest
The grand-prize-winning nanotechnology coating imparts anti-reflection and water-repellency capabilities to surfaces made of silicon, glass ,and some plastics, including Teflon.
INSIDER : Energy
Boron Nitride Separation Process Could Facilitate Higher Efficiency Solar Cells

A team of semiconductor researchers based in France has used a boron nitride separation layer to grow indium gallium nitride (InGaN) solar cells that were then...

INSIDER : Energy
Silicon-Based Tandem Photovoltaic Modules Show Potential

New solar energy research from Arizona State University demonstrates that silicon-based tandem photovoltaic modules, which convert sunlight to electricity with higher efficiency than...

Articles : Electronics & Computers
National Renewable Energy Laboratory

In 1977, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL, Golden, CO) started as the Solar Energy Research Institute (SERI), spurred by national concern during the 1973 oil embargo that caused long lines...

Articles : Energy
Products of Tomorrow: September 2018

This column presents technologies that have applications in commercial areas, possibly creating the products of tomorrow. To learn more about each technology, see the contact information provided for that...

Briefs : Imaging
Piezoelectric Thrust Vector Control for Hall Effect Thruster

The design of the CubeSat required precision pointing of the thrust vector through the spacecraft center of gravity to minimize fuel usage for attitude correction. Because the center of gravity shifts over the course of the mission, a means of adjusting the thrust vector was needed....

Who's Who : Energy
Q&A: Dr. André D. Taylor, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering Dept., New York University Tandon School of Engineering, New York, NY

An international team of university researchers, led by Dr. Taylor, reports solving a major fabrication...

Briefs : Energy
Direct-Current Detector for Emergency Responder Safety

The Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has developed a direct-current detector technology to help emergency responders safely detect high voltages, which they have...

Articles : Test & Measurement
Solar PV and Lithium-Ion Battery Hybrids for the IIoT — A User's Guide

Hybrid solutions that combine small photovoltaic (PV) panels with industrial grade rechargeable Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries provide long-term power for remote...

INSIDER : Energy
Tiny Defects in Semiconductors Created ‘Speed Bumps’ or Electrons. UCLA Researchers Cleared the Path

UCLA scientists and engineers have developed a new process for assembling semiconductor devices. The advance could lead to much more...

Application Briefs : Software
High-Speed Reluctance Machine Design

Silphenix GmbH is an engineering and consulting firm in Switzerland specializing in high-speed electrical machines, magnetic bearings, and electromagnetic field analysis. One project focus is compact...

Briefs : Energy
Water-Based Battery Stores Solar and Wind Energy

Wind and solar energy generation creates challenges, since the Sun only shines by day, and sometimes the wind doesn't blow. Another variability is surges of demand on the grid. On a hot day when air conditioning is in use, utilities must have load-balancing strategies to meet peak demand. A...

Articles : Photonics/Optics
Auxiliary Power Solutions for 1500 VDC Photovoltaic Systems

Photovoltaic systems are continually evolving to improve their efficiency and financial viability. One trend is to move to larger strings of cells giving higher dc voltages to be...

Blog : Energy
From Chemical Engineer to Solar-Powered Whiskey and Beer: Meet Jim Batdorf, Chief Distiller
Jim Batdorf tells Tech Briefs about his unique career path, from chemical engineer to distiller of solar-powered spirits.
Briefs : Energy
Mobile Power Distribution System

Mobile or transportable power supply and distribution systems are needed for various types of work that require electrical power in a field or outdoor environment — such as construction and environmental...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
3D-Printed Device Produces Nanofiber Meshes

Nanofibers are useful for any application that benefits from a high ratio of surface area to volume, such as solar cells that maximize exposure to sunlight, or fuel cell electrodes that catalyze...

Briefs : Energy
Bi-Directional Energy Cascades and the Origin of Kinetic Turbulence in the Solar Wind

The kinetic turbulence of solar wind originates in the solar corona. The solar wind carries the fluctuations and escapes from the corona along the open magnetic field lines, and enters into the interplanetary space. The energy exchange among waves and particles...

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Following Up: What is the Future of Flexible Solar Cells?
Researcher Jaana Vapaavuori answered an additional question regarding the future of flexible solar cells.
Blog : Materials
With a Conductive Thin Film, Researchers Test a Silver Screen
PhD student Jes Linnet hopes that a silver-based, transparent conductive electrode film offers a longer-lasting alternative for flexible screens and electronics.
Question of the Week : Energy
Will Flexible Solar Cells Catch On?

Though a flexible solar cell offers exciting, new ways of powering vehicles, clothing, and other smart technologies, manufacturing the photovoltaic component is a challenge.

Given the high costs and short lifetimes of today's flexible cells, researchers at Aalto University in Finland and Université...

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Will Flexible Solar Cells Soon Power Our Devices?
Professor Jaana Vapaavuori spoke with Tech Briefs about the manufacturing methods that could someday decrease the cost and increase the lifetime of flexible solar cells.
Briefs : Energy
Composite Film Enables Windows that Switch from Transparent to Color

Commercial buildings in the United States account for nearly 40% of the total energy consumption. Among them, electricity is the largest energy source for buildings....

Blog : Green Design & Manufacturing
A New Approach to Solar-Powered Water Purification: Stay Cool
Researchers at the University of Buffalo have found a counter-intuitive way of improving the water-purification process: keeping things cool.
Articles : Photonics/Optics
5 Ws of Invisible Glass

Who

Users of consumer electronics devices and solar cells, and high-power pulsed laser applications.

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Solar-Powered Device Generates Electricity Through Ion Transport

By binding photosensitive dyes to common plastic membranes and adding water, chemists have made a new type of solar power generator. The device is similar to familiar silicon...