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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Solar nanocoating research update

Researchers in Iran have developed a nanoparticle coating that they say helps to increase efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells.
The researchers, working for Abar Nanofanavar Pishgam Sharif Company in Tehran, used titanium dioxide nanoparticles to create and test the coating as a replacement for silicon cells, according to a statement released Monday (Oct. 26) by the Iran Nanotechnology Initiative Council.
The solar cells can be used to generate power for industrial applications; household appliances; the automotive industry; and in aerospace.
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Researchers in Iran have developed a new coating for solar cells that uses titanium dioxide nanoparticles instead of more costly silicon.
Dye-sensitized solar cells have become more important in recent years, according to the researchers.
They can be produced inexpensively in comparison to silicon cells and have relatively simple production technology. The goal of the most recent experiment was to produce and study the performance of a coating that will be used in dye-sensitized solar cells.
Efficiency in Short Circuits
Titanium dioxide nanoparticles doped with elements—such as strontium and chrome—were used to produce the coating, according to the statement.
The titanium dioxide and other spherical nanoparticles used average about 60 nanometers in size. Crystalline structure, chemical structure and composition of the coatings were controlled to increase the current density in short circuits of dye-sensitized solar cells.
Researchers said they believe that the increase in efficiency of the cells in comparison with the cells produced on the base of usual coatings (such as those made with silicon) is a result of the increase in the current density in their short circuits.
In addition to the inexpensive production costs, the other advantages of titanium dioxide nanoparticles are a cheaper final price and a high transparency for the light, the statement said.
They caution, however, that studies still need to be completed to determine how to increase the efficiency of the new cells because they have a low yield of electrical current from the solar cells.
The study is published in the December 2015 issue of the Journal of Colloid and Interface Science