Dye-sensitized socal cell

From: Perovskite Solar Cells: Rising, Last Advances, and Future Perspectives

This post went up the other day in our ECS Linkedin group:

Perovskite Solar Cells: Rising, Last Advances, and Future Perspectives

The progress made by emerging photovoltaic technologies in the last year has been outstanding. Important steps towards the realization of silicon-free solid-state solar cells with a real potential for commercialization were taken. In particular, a number of milestones have been achieved in the development of hybrid mesoscopic and thin-film solar cells based on the use of nanocrystals of organometal halide perovskites as the light absorbers. Under this approach, the power conversion efficiency (PCE) has been boosted from values around 6-8% (hold by metal chalcogenide solar cells) to over the 19%. Such a performance is now very close to the 25% of crystalline silicon solar cells, the leading commercial technology. But the most intriguing is that these breakthroughs have been achieved in devices entirely fabricated in the solid state, which, so far, had shown worse energy conversion abilities than their counterparts based on liquid electrolytes like dye-sensitized solar cells.  Read the rest.

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Peer Review and Citation Ring

Journal of Vibration cover

SAGE Publications retracts 60 papers.

Peer review of our journals is one of the things we are most proud of here at The Electrochemical Society. Even as we move to Open Access for our publications, our peer review process is going to remain as rigorous as ever. Amazing the lengths people will go to beat the system though. This from RetractionWatch.com:

SAGE Publishers is retracting 60 articles from the Journal of Vibration and Control after an investigation revealed a “peer review and citation ring” involving a professor in Taiwan.

Here’s another piece I found interesting background reading, it’s about a year old, about how easy it is to get fake papers published because of the lack of good peer review.

PS: If you want to publish in a nice, no drama atmosphere, think of ECS.

Patents, Open Source and Open Access

TeslaOn June 12, Tesla announced that it would no longer initiate patent lawsuits against anyone using their technology in good faith. Tesla CEO, Elon Musk, wrote this about the removal of patents from a wall in their Palo Alto lobby, “they have been removed, in the spirit of the open source movement, for the advancement of electric vehicle technology.”

Musk went on to state,

We believe that Tesla, other companies making electric cars, and the world would all benefit from a common, rapidly-evolving technology platform. Technology leadership is not defined by patents, which history has repeatedly shown to be small protection indeed against a determined competitor, but rather by the ability of a company to attract and motivate the world’s most talented engineers. We believe that applying the open source philosophy to our patents will strengthen rather than diminish Tesla’s position in this regard.

Bravo to Tesla! ECS shares similar values and launched author choice open access earlier this year. Some of our reasons for committing to open access closely parallel Mr. Musk’s remarks: the need to accelerate research, technology and innovation. A recent evaluation suggested that close to 65% of ECS technical content involves the sustainability of our planet. By opening access to the latest findings, ECS believes we can better support innovative research, reach new audiences, and enable faster scientific breakthroughs.

For more than 110 years the ECS mission has been to disseminate scientific information to the widest possible audience. Our vision for the future remains true to this goal, and expands upon it by creating uninhibited availability of ECS content through open access – an initiative that democratizes the science and hopefully, accelerates scientific progress.

Superelastic battery

One of the goals of this blog is to share some of the content we swap with each other in the office and with members around the world. And we are not just talking sharing information that we are publishing. It’s anything we find interesting.

Here’s a perfect case, Logan, who’s an editorial assistant here, emailed me this article from ChemistryWorld about a super stretchy battery with a video:

Lithium ion batteries that can be stretched by 600% have been unveiled by scientists in China. In the future, the fibre shaped batteries could be woven into textiles to satisfy the ever-growing requirement for wearable devices.

Huisheng Peng and colleagues at Fudan University made the superelastic batteries by winding two carbon nanotubes–lithium oxide composites yarns, which served as the positive and negative electrodes, onto an elastomer substrate and covering this with a layer of gel electrolyte. The batteries owe their stable electrochemical performance under stretching to the twisted structure of the fibre electrodes and the stretchability of the substrate and gel electrolyte, with the latter also acting as an anchor. When the batteries were stretched, the spring-like structure of the two electrodes was maintained.

Read the rest. The paper is free to access until July 23, 2014.

Look for more on the subject in the ESC Digital Library.

Who Inspired You?

Mr Wizard

Donald Herbert better known as Mr. Wizard.

I’ll be the first to admit I need direction. I was attracted to this job as Director of Marketing and Digital Engagement because I love science and history and I’m a teacher at heart. The ECS mission – dissemination of knowledge – struck me.

Thank you Mr. Wizard and Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson and my 6th grade science teacher Mr. Smott and the movie Race for the Double Helix and Meyer Moore and his dad who introduced me to model rockets just to name a few.

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