Dye-sensitized solar cells for energy for air unmanned aircraft

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Dye-sensitized solar cells for energy for air unmanned aircraft

ScienceDaily (July 27, 2009) - dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) to the unmanned aerial vehicles in the future (UAVs) for energy, because they have the best energy collection system, and in case of no fuel for the aircraft provides a longer flight time.

University of Washington Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) project team, the researcher Dr. Minoru Taya, under the leadership is committed to a sky solar cells - with a flexible film with a thin transparent conductive glass electrode. He found DSSCs is composed of organic materials, including dyes and moth eye film, to capture photons and convert them into electronic, to obtain high photon energy.

A few years ago, the team will dye sensitized solar cells installed in a toy airplane wing, the propeller can work, but because of the heavy use of solar cells, the aircraft could not fly. After testing, they decided to use thin-film battery technology, and the success of the aircraft flying.

"This solar cell has a special power accumulation efficiency (PCE), is a very clean source of energy, easily the machine table in a helicopter covering a large area, but also low-temperature processing, lower total cost." Taya said.

The group is currently using PECs biomimetic dyes in DSSCs, the unmanned aircraft will be installed in the wings in the air to collect energy.

Taya also said that "any air energy collector must meet additional requirements, such as weight and the durability of the air environment. If these can be met, the aircraft can have a longer flight time."

At the same time, engineers are the challenges of DSSCs techniques to find the key to make the point more lasting battery, and how they can better technology and other aerial vehicles into one. The group also tried to determine how to install the wing in the helicopter and how to store solar energy collected.

"Some of these problems will be in the Air Force Office of Scientific Research Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative study staff for their hard efforts, in the next two years to be resolved. In order to make the solar collector DSSCs transferred to the UAV's machine wing, the more engineering task still exists, which requires funding to other projects in the following 5 years to resolve. "

Finally, the team hopes to design a larger, more flexible, with high conversion rates DSSCs, in order to achieve their goals. In general, the efficiency of large solar cells will be reduced, therefore, the group is high resistance of the metal mesh surface, can greatly speed up the transfer of electrons to maintain high efficiency.


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