Use of solar energy based on the model of plants

Green plants have the particularity of using solar radiation directly to create their own energy. The known technologies used on solar panels are able to transform only a very small part of the radiation collected into usable energy, unlike plants. Mr. Prof. Dr. Dirk Guldi of the Chair of Physical Chemistry I at the University of Erlangen-Nurnberg has developed a new device that replaces the crystalline silicon layers serving
until then to collect radiation by pipes at the scale of the nanometer in carbon. The mini pipes will have attached molecular particles to resemble microscopic branches with very small leaves.

The mini carbon tubes are made of a single layer of carbon atoms wound in the shape of a long hollow cylinder with a hexagonal structure. Groups of molecules can be fixed on the outer wall using a molecular hook and a chain of hooks, a kind of ferrocene, a
complex of carbon rings around an iron atom, or porphyrin, a molecular class close to chemical chlorophyll. These two kinds of constituent elements have a tendency surplus of electrons and can easily drop an electron.

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When the light touches the mini pipe, a negative charge animated by the photons moves from the "leaves" towards the stem. Before the device returns to its original state, there is enough time to divert the displaced electrons and use them. The first bases necessary for
Development of solar panels built using modified mini carbon pipes are well in place.

- Teacher. Dr. Dirk M. Guldi, Lehrstuhl on Physikalische Chemie I,
Friedrich-Alexander-Universitat Erlangen-Nurnberg - tel: + 49 91318527340 -
Sources: Sachgebiet fur Offentlichkeit, Friedrich-Alexander-Universitat
Erlangen-Nurnberg, 10 / 01 / 2005
Editor: Simone Gautier (CCUFB (

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