Researchers use neutrons to gain insight into battery inefficiency

Lithium ions are depleted as a battery charges and are also lost to the formation of a thin coating on a battery’s anode. Researchers used powerful neutron science facilities to try to understand the dynamics behind this phenomenon.

Vulnerable grassland birds abandon mating sites near wind turbines

Shifting to renewable energy sources has been widely touted as one of the best ways to fight climate change, but even renewable energy can have a downside, as in the case of wind turbines’ effects on bird populations. In a new paper, a group of researchers demonstrate the impact that one wind energy development in Kansas has had on Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) breeding in the area.

Superoxide gives lithium-air batteries a jolt

In a recent experiment, scientists were able to produce stable crystallized lithium superoxide instead of lithium peroxide during battery discharging. Unlike lithium peroxide, lithium superoxide can easily dissociate into lithium and oxygen, leading to high efficiency and good cycle life.

Green storage for green energy

Researchers have demonstrated a safe and affordable battery capable of storing energy from intermittent sources — like rooftop solar panels — that is suitable for the home.

Some like it hot: Simulating single particle excitations

Understanding and manipulating plasmons is important for their potential use in photovoltaics, solar cell water splitting, and sunlight-induced fuel production from carbon dioxide. Researchers have used a real-time numerical algorithm to study both the plasmon and hot carrier within the same framework. That is critical for understanding how long a particle stays excited, and whether there is energy backflow from hot carrier to plasmon.

Match-heads boost photovoltaic efficiency

Crystal growth on a nano/microscale level produces “match-head”-like, three-dimensional structures that enhance light absorption and photovoltaic efficiency. This is the first large structure grown on a nanowire tip and it creates a completely new architecture for harnessing energy.

3D ‘nanobridges’ formed using electron beam writing with tiny jets of liquid precursor

Researchers have demonstrated a new process for rapidly fabricating complex three-dimensional nanostructures from a variety of materials, including metals. The new technique uses nanoelectrospray to provide a continuous supply of liquid precursor, which can include metal ions that are converted to high-purity metal by a focused electron beam.