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1.3 PHYSICAL SCIENCES
The fundamental limitation of the conversion efficiency achievable with solar energy solutions (which includes photovoltaic and photothermal technology), requires the adaptation and integration of a series of innovative material strategies to continue the process of sustainably decarbonizing the global economy. Through the passive integration of additional nanoscale features which exploit and modify the solar spectrum through its interactions with luminescent molecules, metal nanoparticles, and/or thin-film optical coatings – the solar spectrum can be modulated and accordingly the collection efficiency of each respective technology enhanced. However, irrespective of the type of spectral conversion integrated into the technology (luminescent down-shifting, nanofluids, plasmonic luminescent down-shifting, or spectral beam splitting), a series of additional loss mechanisms are introduced as a result of the architectural modifications. Through a proposed series of innovative & iterative advancements in each one of these material strategies, the objective of alleviating the additional loss mechanisms through a suitable combination of the individual approaches could potentially be realised.
Walshe, J. (2020) Innovative Nanomaterial Approaches For Solar Energy Applications, Doctoral Thesis, Technological University Dublin. doi:10.21427/we15-0519