|Ken Novak's Weblog
Purpose of this blog: to retain annotated bookmarks for my future reference, and to offer others my filter technology and other news. Note that this blog is categorized. Use the category links to find items that match your interests.
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Saturday, July 27, 2002
"Sharp Corporation has built a third solar cell manufacturing line for multi-crystal silicon solar cells at the company's Shinjo No. 3 Plant in Nara Prefecture, Japan. The plant will be fully operational in July 2002, with an annual capacity of 148 MW, the world's largest"
June 2000 July 2001 July 2002 7:41:35 AM
Annual cell manufacturing 54 MW 94 MW 148 MW
Solar cell produces hydrogen:
Dec 2001 announcement of a "discovery of a material that can extract hydrogen from water using energy from visible light. Zhigang Zou of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Japan and colleagues have developed a photocatalyst that uses optical radiation - which makes up 43% of solar energy. .. Previous catalysts have only responded to ultraviolet radiation, which accounts for just 4% of the Sun's energy." A new semiconductor is immersed in water and exposed to light, releasing hydrogen and oxygen. "Although their set-up is only 0.66% efficient, they are confident that this will improve when they increase the surface area of the semiconductor, and adjust its layout." 7:24:52 AM
Green cars move into top gear:
"By 2020 more than 1 billion cars will vie for space on the world's roads, compared with the 400 million cars that exist today. ..The National Ethanol Vehicle Coalition, based in Jefferson City, Missouri, estimates that more than 2.3 million "flexible-fuel vehicles", which can run on both E85 and petrol, will be on the road by the end of the current model year. ..The major car makers are not alone in developing green vehicles. The Solectria Corporation of Woburn, Massachusetts, has developed components of hybrid electric-drive systems - including AC-induction drive motors with regenerative braking, high-efficiency motor controllers, battery chargers, and other accessories and monitoring systems - that help to power road cars, school buses, delivery trucks and solar racing cars. Overall, the parts made by the company power more than 2000 vehicles worldwide. And, like the larger manufacturers, the company is seeking to expand its green niche to a broad mass market." 6:42:53 AM
Photons double up for solar power
: "Solar cells could get an efficiency boost of 30% using a device proposed by physicists in Australia and Germany.. Solar cells are sensitive only to photons with wavelengths that correspond to the energy gap of the material from which they are made. When photons with this wavelength reach the cell, they excite electrons into the conduction band of the material, where they are registered as an electrical current. But higher-energy photons cannot contribute to this current, and can reduce the efficiency of the cell by heating it up. Now Green and colleagues say that high-energy photons could be harnessed and converted into current using a 'down-converter' - a device that splits high-energy photons into two lower-energy photons. When a photon reaches the down-converter, it excites an electron into a higher energy level. But the electron returns to its ground state via an intermediate energy level, and emits a lower-energy photon at each stage. By tuning a down-converter to emit photons with a wavelength corresponding to the energy gap of a solar cell, one high-energy photon could be split into two 'useful' photons. " 6:36:04 AM