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Frontiers in
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Frontiers in Energy Research: Summer 2015
  • Michelle A. Harris & Sameer Patwardhan

    Commercial solar panels have primarily used silicon for decades, but now a new material, perovskite, is revolutionizing the solar energy field, but the toxic element lead and the long-term stability of perovskites remain major challenges. At the ANSER center, researchers are taking on these challenges...

    Read more

    The ideal cubic structure of tin-perovskite consisting of corner-sharing octahedrals, formed by six halide atoms surrounding each tin atom, with carbon-based molecules sitting in the voids.

Feature Articles
  • Education raises awareness of the country’s energy challenges and encourages the next generation to join in solving these challenges.

    Kathryn Fixen

    Energy independence means informing and inspiring the best and brightest in today's schools. Learn how energy science is getting in the classroom...

  • The frontiers of energy science are being advanced through international partnerships.

    Hayden T. Black

    Solving today's energy challenges demands great minds from diverse backgrounds work together. Learn how scientists are bringing together experts from across the globe...

Research Highlights
  • Ryan Patet

    Designing efficient, affordable reactions that turn plant matter into plastics means understanding the catalyst involved. Scientists' discoveries reveal insights about the performance of a promising clay-like catalyst...

  • Anastasia G. Ilgen

    A material best depicted as a honeycomb that is only one atom thick, graphene selectively transports protons via atom-sized defects, opening up the doors to discoveries for energy storage and water desalinization...

  • Laura E. Fernandez

    The catalyst is affordable and abundant, but can it produce water and not destructive hydrogen peroxide in a fuel cell? Scientists are finding out...

  • S. Garrett Williams

    Can methane stop being flared from oil wells and instead be turned into fuel? Scientists used computation and theory to design a promising catalyst that turns methane to methanol...

  • Ashley Marshall

    Cells that use the energy from sunlight to create energy-dense fuels could greatly benefit from a simple dip in plastic...

  • Jonathan Rameau

    Irradiating superconductors could raise the amount of electric current they can carry by a factor of 10...

  • Jennifer L. Esbenshade

    By compressing the chemical benzene to 200,000 times atmospheric pressure and decompressing it slowly, scientists created small, extremely stiff, and strong threads with some extreme possibilities...

Editor's Note

The Summer Stretch

For some, summer offers an opportunity to laze about a swimming pool and contemplate the clouds high overhead, but for many others, summer is a time to stretch and try new things. This issue of the newsletter highlights work being done in the Energy Frontier Research Centers that stretch beyond the usual, the ordinary. They are reaching out to teachers, students, and collaborators in other countries. They are designing new materials and protective layers for solar cells. They are taking on challenges as diverse as creating plastic from plants, one-atom-thick membranes that could offer a host of advantages, and resistance-free wires for transmitting energy. Take a moment or two to learn about how researchers are doing what it takes to push back the frontiers of energy research.

Editorial Board and Writers

Editorial Board

  • Hayden Black, Center for Solar Fuels
  • Jennifer Esbenshade, Center for Electrochemical Energy Science
  • Laura E. Fernandez, Inorganometallic Catalyst Design Center
  • Kathryn Fixen, Center for Biological Electron Transfer and Catalysis
  • Anastasia Ilgen, Center for Frontiers of Subsurface Energy Security
  • Ryan Patet, Catalysis Center for Energy Innovation
  • Sameer Patwardhan, Argonne-Northwestern University Solar Energy Research Center
  • Nicholas Quackenbush, Northeast Center for Chemical Energy Storage
  • Jonathon Rameau, Center for Emergent Superconductivity
  • Robert L. Sacci, Fluid Interface Reactions, Structures and Transport Center
  • Kristin Manke, Center for Molecular Electrocatalysis, Editor-in-Chief

Guest Writers

  • Michelle Harris, Argonne-Northwestern University Solar Energy Research Center
  • Ashley Marshall, Center for Advanced Solar Photophysics
  • Garrett Williams, Center for Biological Electron Transfer and Catalysis
Disclaimer: The opinions in this newsletter are those of the individual authors and do not represent the views or position of the Department of Energy.