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Scientists Create Gorgeous Nanoflowers for Next-Gen Solar Cells and Ultra High-Density Energy Storage
Posted By Morgana Matus On October 13, 2012 @ 11:00 am In biomimicry,Botanical,Design,Environment,Green Technology,Innovation,News,Renewable Energy,Solar Power | 2 Comments
When it comes to capturing the energy of the sun, what better model is there than photosynthetic plants? Researchers at North Carolina State University  have cultivated a beautiful crop of germanium sulfide  (GeS) “nanoflowers” that could be used to create next generation solar cells and ultra high-density energy storage systems. The nanoflowers have petals that resemble those of a geranium or marigold – although they’re only 20-30 nanometers thick and they’re capable of storing much more energy than traditional energy storage cells.
North Carolina State University  created its GeS nanoflowers by heating germanium sulfide powder in a furnace until it begins to vaporize. Once airborne, the particles are blown into a cooler part of the furnace, where they settle onto a layered sheet that is about 20-30 nanometers thick and 100 nanometers long. As more layers are added, the sheets begin to branch away from one another, forming a structure that looks like a flower.
GeS is inexpensive and non-toxic, making it a desirable choice for use in solar cells . In addition to being an efficient material for capturing light and converting it into usable energy, GeS could also potentially extend the capacity of lithium-ion batteries and provide increased storage for supercapacitors.
Via Engadget 
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URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/scientists-create-gorgeous-nanoflowers-for-next-gen-solar-cells-and-ultra-high-density-energy-storage/
URLs in this post:
 North Carolina State University: http://news.ncsu.edu/releases/wms-cao-flower/
 germanium sulfide: http://www.americanelements.com/gesu.html
 Image: http://inhabitat.com/scientists-create-gorgeous-nanoflowers-for-next-gen-solar-cells-and-ultra-high-density-energy-storage/french-marigold/
 solar cells: http://inhabitat.com/solar-power/
 Engadget: http://www.engadget.com/2012/10/11/nc-state-crafts-nanoflowers-that-boost-battery-capacity/
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