Rice, Penn State labs lay groundwork for block copolymer solar cells
A new version of solar cells created by laboratories at Rice and Pennsylvania State universities could open the door to research on a new class of solar energy devices.
The photovoltaic devices created in a project led by Rice chemical engineer Rafael Verduzco and Penn State chemical engineer Enrique Gomez are based on block copolymers, self-assembling organic materials that arrange themselves into distinct layers. They easily outperform other cells with polymer compounds as active elements.
The discovery is detailed online in the American Chemical Society journal Nano Letters.