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Research

A stable sodium battery, without the anode

Scientists in the U.S. demonstrated a sodium-ion battery with no anode, that retained 99.93% of its initial capacity per cycle. Their design was able to overcome many of the stability issues associated with using ‘pure’ alkali metals in batteries, thanks to carefully minimizing water content in the liquid electrolyte.

16.63%-efficient perovskite PV module via slot-die coating

Scientists in China have developed a large-area perovskite solar panel by utilizing diphenyl sulfoxide (DPSO) as an electron acceptor. The device was fabricated via slot-die coating, and featured a parallel-interconnection architecture.

A different angle on perovskite defects

Scientists in China took a closer look at the role of defects in limiting the performance of perovskite solar cells, demonstrating a screening effect that could be tuned to make material defects “invisible” to charge carriers, greatly improving cell performance. Using this approach they demonstrate a 22% efficient inverted perovskite solar cell, and theorize several new pathways to even higher performance.

Storing large scale renewables with basalt stones

A Danish consortium is seeking to store electricity from large scale renewable energy plants in the form of thermal energy in big tanks containing crushed, pea-sized stones made of basalt. The first 10 MWh demonstrator is planned to be developed in Denmark and to be powered by a wind facility. Another project is also under development in the United States and is planned to be linked to a solar plant.

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Lithium saturation to make old batteries new

Scientists investigating the aging mechanisms affecting today’s lithium-ion batteries observed that the loss of lithium over time is one of the main causes of performance loss. With this in mind, they developed and tested a “relithiation” process that promises to eliminate much of the cost and complexity from recycling battery components and materials.

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Solar sculpture to produce 300 MWh of electricity annually

Called Solar Mountain, the permanent installation should be built in Nevada with modular design elements of recycled wood and other environmentally friendly materials.

Floating structure design for offshore PV

Researchers at the Norwegian institute Sintef are testing a special floating structure that Equinor wants to deploy in offshore waters. The structure is built with an anchoring system that is claimed to give the installation enough freedom to cope with the waves.

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Solar pavement for historic square in Barcelona

The municipal government of Barcelona is supporting the development of a 50-square-meter pilot project to test the feasibility of PV-paving tech.

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Keeping track of hydrogen for perovskite performance

Scientists in the United States discovered that hydrogen plays a leading role in the formation of defects in a perovskite film, which limit their performance as PV devices. The discovery, according to the researchers, offers further insight into observations already established by trial and error and could help to push the impressive efficiency achievements already made by perovskites even higher.

Offshore floating PV platform unveiled in the Netherlands

Dutch floating structure specialist Solarduck has built a pilot 65 kW floating PV array that will be connected to a 10 kW electrolyzer to produce hydrogen bonded with a liquid organic hydrogen carrier. The system is relying on the company’s proprietary floating technology that resembles an offshore oil platform.

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