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Constraints on the Efficiency of Engineered Electromicrobial Production

We have developed a theory that lets us calculate the efficiency of microbes that absorb electricity and store CO2 as biofuels with greater efficiency than photosynthesis. We outline 10 development scenarios including re-engineering direct electron uptake microbes with high-efficiency CO2 fixation; scaling up H2-oxidizing microbe systems to store megawatts...

Liquid Thermo-Responsive Smart Window Derived from Hydrogel

Buildings account for 40% of global energy consumption, while windows are the least energy-efficient part of buildings. Conventional smart windows only regulate solar transmission. For the first time, a smart thermochromic window with high thermal energy storage was developed to cut off building energy consumption as demonstrated by experiments and...

Shallow Iodine Defects Accelerate the Degradation of α-Phase Formamidinium Perovskite

Systematic experimental and computational studies revealed that iodine interstitial defects (Ii) can be unintentionally generated during commonly used post-fabrication surface treatments for state-of-the-art perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Although shallow, Ii lowers the cubic-to-hexagonal phase transformation activation energy barrier of FAPbI3-based...

A Cross-Domain Approach to Analyzing the Short-Run Impact of COVID-19 on the US Electricity Sector

We present a cross-domain, data-driven approach to tracking and quantifying the impact of COVID-19 on the US electricity sector, including (1) a first-of-its-kind open-access data hub integrating electricity data with public health, mobility, weather, and satellite data and (2) a cross-domain analysis quantifying the sensitivity of electricity consumption...

Spontaneous Solar Syngas Production from CO2 Driven by Energetically Favorable Wastewater Microbial Anodes

An elaborate microbial photoelectrochemical (MPEC) system was established to produce syngas without any external energy input. In this setup, the microbial anode is capable of oxidizing waste organics in wastewater and reducing CO2 on the photocathode. The Si photocathode coated with Ni single-atom catalysts was powered by the microbial anode and delivered...

Biodeterioration Affecting Efficiency and Lifetime of Plastic-Based Photovoltaics

Solar cells are subjected to various physical, chemical, and biological stressors in the field. Here, a perspective on the potential detrimental effects of biofilm growth on solar cells is given. Soiling and photon competition affect the photovoltaic performance of all cells, while a suite of biochemical mechanisms (“biodeterioration”) may affect the...

Unveiling the Stable Nature of the Solid Electrolyte Interphase between Lithium Metal and LiPON via Cryogenic Electron Microscopy

A combination of cryogenic electron microscopy and cryogenic focused ion beam enabled the characterization of the interface between Li metal and lithium phosphorous oxynitride, one of the well-known interfaces to exhibit exemplary electrochemical stability with a lithium metal anode. The probed structural and chemical information leads to a more comprehensive...

Hybrid Inorganic-Biological Systems: Faradaic and Quantum Efficiency, Necessary but Not Sufficient

Storing solar energy in liquid fuels can be achieved by pairing redox equivalents from inorganic light absorbers with biological catalysts. Such a hybrid inorganic-biological (HIB) approach has a dual efficiency advantage, combining the high light-to-charge carrier efficiency of inorganic systems with biology’s low overpotentials for multi-electron,...

A Device-to-Material Strategy Guiding the “Double-High” Thermoelectric Module

Thermoelectric devices having both high conversion efficiency and high power density (“double high”) are in high demand for power-generation applications. In this work, we propose a device-to-material strategy in the design of double-high thermoelectric modules. A maximum conversion efficiency of 10.5% and a maximum power density of 3.1 Wcm−2 was achieved...

A General Method for Regenerating Catalytic Electrodes

After the prolonged operation of electrochemical cells, byproducts are accumulated, which block the active electrode surface as well as the catalyst. A Joule heating device is designed to conduct high-temperature pulse annealing for regenerating catalytic electrodes. A single electrical pulse is applied to the carbon heating elements to rapidly ramp...

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