Nanotechnology Meets Solar Power
New methods of creating solar cells cut manufacturing costs nearly in half. The New Jersey-based company is also working to create super-efficient cells by using nanotechnology.
What's the Latest Development?
A new low-energy method of making solar cells could cut the manufacturing costs nearly in half, making them far more efficient or cheaper than conventional cells. Rather than the high-temperature gas-based process currently used by most manufacturers, the new technique "deposits coatings in a low-temperature, liquid-based process." The technology, developed at Rice University, is being commercialized by a New Jersey start up which estimates it can save $1 million annually on electricity costs using the low-temperature method.
What's the Big Idea?
The New Jersey company, Natcore Technology, is also working to incorporate nanotechnology into the solar cell industry. One of the designs for a next-generation solar panel involves depositing 'quantum dots' on silicon solar cells. "The quantum dots are designed to absorb colors that silicon doesn't, potentially doubling the efficiency of solar cells." Natcore is also working with Kodak to develop a process that coats carbon nanotubes with a solar semiconductor material to produce thin, flexible solar cells.
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A NASA astronomer explains how astronauts dispose of their, uh, dark matter.
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The Harvard psychologist loves reading authors' rules for writing. Here are his own.
- Steven Pinker is many things: linguist, psychologist, optimist, Harvard professor, and author.
- When it comes to writing, he's a student and a teacher.
- Here's are his 13 rules for writing better, more simply, and more clearly.
A growing body of research shows promising signs that the keto diet might be able to improve mental health.
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- Recent studies suggests that the keto diet might be an effective tool for treating depression, and clearing up so-called "brain fog," though scientists caution more research is necessary before it can be recommended as a treatment.
- Any experiments with the keto diet are best done in conjunction with a doctor, considering some people face problems when transitioning to the low-carb diet.
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