Novel Clean Water Device

  • | Thursday | 16th November, 2023

By Animesh Ikshit

New Delhi, Nov. 15: Scientists have developed a groundbreaking device capable of purifying contaminated water while simultaneously producing clean hydrogen fuel. This innovative solution, inspired by photosynthesis, opens doors for communities with limited resources or off-grid living.

 The device, often referred to as an "artificial leaf," distinguishes itself from previous versions by its ability to function with polluted water sources. Unlike its predecessors, this device not only cleans water but also generates clean drinking water simultaneously, presenting a dual-purpose approach to addressing environmental challenges.

 Chanon Pornrungroj from the University of Cambridge, a co-lead author of the research, says that though the process is complex, it combines the functions of merging solar fuels production and water purification in a single device. This breakthrough holds promise in tackling two critical issues – providing green fuel and ensuring access to safe drinking water.

 In another significant stride towards renewable energy, the Chinese solar technology firm Longi has achieved a groundbreaking 33.9 per cent efficiency record for silicon-perovskite tandem solar cells. This accomplishment surpasses the previous record set by the King Abdullah University of Science & Technology in Saudi Arabia.

 The efficiency record, certified by the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), highlights the ongoing efforts to enhance solar panel efficiency. With a theoretical efficiency limit of 33.7 per cent for standard single-junction solar cells, the collaboration of perovskites with silicon in tandem solar cells proves instrumental in pushing these limits.

 Perovskite-silicon tandem solar cells, often dubbed the "miracle material," consist of different materials responding to distinct sections of the solar spectrum. This design significantly improves overall solar cell efficiency, with perovskites boasting a theoretical efficiency of 43 percent.

 Longi`s achievement underscores China`s rising prominence in technological innovation, particularly in the field of solar cell research and development. As the world seeks cleaner energy alternatives, the efficiency gains in tandem solar cells contribute to the industry`s goal of reducing dependence on fossil fuels.

 The success of companies like Longi signals a shift in technological leadership to China, aligning with the broader trend observed across various domains. This progress contrasts with developments in other regions, such as the UK-based Oxford PV`s pursuit of tandem solar cells with a lower efficiency of 28.6 percent.

 In the pursuit of cost reduction and improved efficiencies, perovskite-silicon tandem solar cells emerge as a critical component in the photovoltaic industry`s transition towards renewable energy. Ongoing research also explores enhancing the versatility and longevity of tandem solar cells, including the development of double-sided and self-healing panels, paving the way for sustainable solutions that can endure for generations.

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Novel Clean Water Device
  • Thursday | 16th November, 2023