Thursday, 6 December 2012

Chalmers researchers develop synthetic molecules to store solar energy
29 Nov 2012

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and University of California, Berkeley have developed a system which can store solar power in chemical bonds. The system is based on a synthetic molecule that is changed by sunlight. The molecule can be transported and stored for several years and then used to generate heat on demand.

​Many researchers believe that using the sun as the energy source offers the best opportunities for developing a sustainable energy system. One challenge in this area is to find efficient storage methods for saving the captured energy and transporting it to other locations.

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden have made progress in developing an "all-in-one" system for the capture, storage and use of solar power. The method is known as the thermochemical process. It attracted a lot of interest during the 1980s, but researchers at the time were unable to resolve the issue. Two years ago, a group of American researchers demonstrated that the method is theoretically possible. Chalmers researchers Kasper Moth-Poulsen and Karl Boerjesson, working with researchers from University of California, Berkeley in California, have now progressed from theory to practical devices.

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