Photovoltaic Cell Harvests Energy After Sun Goes Down

New research paper "Nighttime electric power generation at a density of 50 mW/m2 via radiative cooling of a photovoltaic cell" from Stanford, supported by U.S. Department of Energy and the Strategic Energy Alliance program at Stanford University. Abstract: "A large fraction of the world's population lacks access to the electric grid. Standard photovoltaic (PV) cells can provide a renewabl... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: March 30

Harvesting body heat Researchers at University of Colorado Boulder, Harbin Institute of Technology, Southeast University, and Huazhong University of Science and Technology designed a stretchy thermoelectric generator that can be worn against the skin to power small wearable electronics using body heat. The stretchy material polyimine is used as the base of the device. A series of thin therm... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: April 28

Flat microwave reflector Researchers from Los Alamos National Laboratory developed a new flat reflector for microwaves that could improve communications while providing a better form factor. It also breaks reciprocity, effectively turning it into a one-way mirror. The flat reflector can be reconfigured on the fly electronically, allowing it to be used for beam steering, customized focusing,... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Oct. 17

Harvesting body heat Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology developed a flexible, wearable thermoelectric generator that can harvest energy from body heat to power simple biosensors. Thermoelectric generators have been available for decades, but standard designs use inflexible inorganic materials that are too toxic for use in wearable devices. The team's device uses thousands... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Aug. 12

Putting waste heat to use According to MIT, it is estimated that more than half of U.S. energy — from vehicles and heavy equipment, for instance — is wasted as heat, which mostly escapes into the air. However, an MIT professor and his team have begun to change that with thermoelectric materials that convert temperature differences into electric voltage.About a decade ago, Gang Chen, the C... » read more