|United States Of America||Issued Patent||10,386,697||08/20/2019||2015-753|
Solar resources are at a premium and the solar energy industry is a $130B market with growth projects of 30%. High demands for attaining renewable energy efficiently and cost-effectively, along with government incentives, are all good indicators for finding innovative ways to optimize solar energy systems.
Traditional semiconducting materials, i.e. silicon and cadmium telluride are unable to absorb all wavelengths of light and become usable energy. UCR researchers were able to functionalize semiconducting nanocrystals that are very efficient in upconverting near infrared photons into higher energy photons. They have optimized upconversion through carefully formulated combinations of semiconductor nanocrystals and organic ligands to enhance upconversion emission by up to 3 orders of magnitude relative to nanocrystals alone. This provides a way to enhance the efficiency of photovoltaic cells and reduce solar electricity costs.
upconversion, semiconductor, solar cell, near-infrared, NIR, photon, energy, solar energy, nanocrystals, energy systems, solar industry