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Copying mother nature's designs
Date:12/10/2009

he dynamics of natural proteins. Nature "engineers" rings of light-harvesting complexes, each hosting a certain number of chlorophylls (photosynthetic light-absorbing pigments). Organisms simultaneously absorb light from different wavelength regions, significantly increasing their energy efficiency.

Bocian and his lab (funds will support at least one student and a post-doc each year for the next five years) use resonance Raman spectroscopy and other techniques to study chromophores, light-absorbing molecules. Resonance Raman spectroscopy, Bocian explained, allows his lab to study the vibrational resonance of individual molecules of interest.

Bocian noted that one advantage of the new cells is that they are more amenable to applications where today's solar cells cannot be used.

"Moreover, the main problem with today's solar cells is that they are not cost effective," he said, "and that's what we're hoping to change with this project."


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Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
iqbal@ucr.edu
951-827-6050
University of California - Riverside
Source:Eurekalert  

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