Monthly Archives: October 2013

Green Turbine present at Europort 2013!

Green Turbine will be present at Europort 2013, one of the world’s leading maritime events. The fair is being held November 5-8 2013 at Ahoy, Rotterdam.

We’ve have been invited to join the stand of  the Fair Nature Foundation. Green Turbine and the Fair Nature Foundation are currently collaborating on a project in waste heat recovery, using the Green Turbine to convert flue gases of a diesel engine into electricity and heat. The ultimate aim is to install this system on board of the Berezina, a converted steam tug boat that demonstrates several sustainable energy technologies.

You are more than welcome to come and visit us!

Click here to pre-register for this event and get free entrance.
Stand: Fair Nature hall 7, stand 7000

Breakthrough for Solar Cell Efficiency

The atomic arrangement at a relaxed InGaN/GaN interface created by layer-by-layer atomic crystal growth is shown. The technique may point to new developments in solar cell efficiency. (Credit: Arizona State University)

Did you know that crystals form the basis for the penetrating icy blue glare of car headlights and could be fundamental to the future in solar energy technology?

Crystals are at the heart of diodes. Not the kind you might find in quartz, formed naturally, but manufactured to form alloys, such as indium gallium nitride or InGaN. This alloy forms the light emitting region of LEDs, for illumination in the visible range, and of laser diodes (LDs) in the blue-UV range.

Research into making better crystals, with high crystalline quality, light emission efficiency and luminosity, is also at the heart of studies being done at Arizona State University by Research Scientist Alec Fischer and Doctoral Candidate Yong Wei in Professor Fernando Ponce’s group in the Department of Physics.

In an article recently published in the journal Applied Physics Letters, the ASU group, in collaboration with a scientific team led by Professor Alan Doolittle at the Georgia Institute of Technology, has just revealed the fundamental aspect of a new approach to growing InGaN crystals for diodes, which promises to move photovoltaic solar cell technology toward record-breaking efficiencies.

Solar energy crystallizes

The InGaN crystals are grown as layers in a sandwich-like arrangement on sapphire substrates. Typically, researchers have found that the atomic separation of the layers varies; a condition that can lead to high levels of strain, breakdowns in growth, and fluctuations in the alloy’s chemical composition.

“Being able to ease the strain and increase the uniformity in the composition of InGaN is very desirable,” says Ponce, “but difficult to achieve. Growth of these layers is similar to trying to smoothly fit together two honeycombs with different cell sizes, where size difference disrupts a periodic arrangement of the cells.”

As outlined in their publication, the authors developed an approach where pulses of molecules were introduced to achieve the desired alloy composition. The method, developed by Doolittle, is called metal-modulated epitaxy. “This technique allows an atomic layer-by-layer growth of the material,” says Ponce.

Minister urges ‘decentralised power revolution’

Minister for energy and climate change, Greg Barker, told Conservative Party conference in Manchester, England this week that he wants to encourage a “decentralised power to the people energy revolution” made up of households and businesses producing their own energy.

The minister says that through stimulating decentralised power the taxpayer has the opportunity to counter the dominance of the Big Six energy suppliers, and cut down significantly on household energy bills.

Greg Barker
There are already more than half a million local energy systems installed in homes and businesses throughout the country and Barker told the audience, “I want to unleash a completely new model of competition and enterprise. I want to encourage a vast new army of disruptive new energy players to challenge the Big Six.”

“From individual consumers to community groups, entrepreneurs, SMEs and FTSE giants, I want them all to consider generating their own energy at real scale, as well as starting to sell their excess energy on a commercial basis. A decentralised power to the people energy revolution – not just a few exemplars but tens of thousands of them. The Big Six need to become the Big 60,000.”

Barker used the occasion to proclaim the virtues of solar energy technology, which today accounts for around 2.5 GW of installed capacity in Britain. He insisted the failing costs of solar, as well as technologies such as combined heat and power, geothermal, biomass, energy from waste and hydro power, were driving jobs and growth.

“We have put pressure on renewables to cut costs, scale up faster, commercialise sooner, and emerge as a genuine commercial challenger to the traditional fossil fuel economy,” he said. “And now with falling costs there are a whole range of locally deployable renewable technologies that can be exploited economically.”

Mr Barker added “We must also look to do far more to integrate our new policies that help families produce their own renewable electricity with our new incentives to help families generate renewable heat, and make sure they work hand in glove with the range of new Green Deal energy efficiency measures which help hardworking families keep their homes warmer for less.”