Sunday, July 30, 2017

Making two out of one



In view of climate change and the needs of the energy reform, it has become particularly important to significantly increase the efficiency of organic solar cells (for example: GOAL ZERO NOMAD 7 PLUS ). In a process known as 'singlet fission', one photon simultaneously excites two electrons. If this effect can be exploited, it may well be possible to dramatically increase the power generated by solar cells.

Physicists and chemists at Friedrich-Alexander-Universitat Erlangen-Nurnberg (FAU) collaborating in an international joint project with Northwestern University in the USA have successfully worked out all the decisive intermediate phases in the singlet fission process and have managed to describe the mechanism in detail for the first time. The results have been published in the leading specialist journal Nature Communications.

Molecules that are stimulated by light reach a higher level of excitation; this means that the corresponding energy can be used in organic solar cells to generate an electric current.

When a light particle collides with and is absorbed by a molecule, it is possible that the surplus energy created in that one molecule could stimulate an electron in a second molecule in its immediate vicinity. As a result, both these molecules would contain an electron in a higher state of excitation.

This process is called singlet fission (SF) and it could, in a best-case scenario, lead to a 50% increase in solar cell performance. However, the generated energy is not retained by molecules for ever and the molecules will eventually return to their former state.

The principle behind SF has been known for 50 years, but its exact mechanism is still not fully understood. That is why the researchers based in Erlangen have closely analysed every intermediate phase between molecule stimulation and return to original state.

Two methods employed to identify individual phases
Working together with international researchers, the team at FAU under Prof. Dr. Dirk M. Guldi (holder of the Chair of Physical Chemistry I) used two different methods to identify the individual phases.

As all processes that occur inside a molecule after its excitation take place at very high speeds, spectroscopic methods have to be employed to provide time-resolved insights into the individual phases following stimulation.

Using spectroscopy, the researchers first looked at how the absorption properties of molecules changed during the deactivation phase. Certain transitional phases known as intermediates leave behind 'fingerprints' that allow these to be clearly identified.

Some intermediates, however, have identical absorption properties, which is why it is necessary to use a second method for analysis - in this case electron spin resonance spectroscopy.

This is because some of the intermediates differ with regard to the spin of their stimulated electrons. By using these two methods in tandem, the FAU team successfully managed to identify all of the intermediates and develop a standardised model of what happens in SF.

The researchers hope the results of their work will make it possible to take a more targeted approach to molecule design that in turn will make feasible the production a solar cell that operates on the basis of the singlet fission principle.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

How can Small Business Owners Save Business Drowning in Debt



Companies don’t just go under because of poor management or difficult economy. They also fail for many other reasons such as accepting more orders than they can service, and running out of cash as they try to keep up. Unfair laws are another possibility. For instance, in Britain, utilities have the legal right to underestimate the energy consumption of their small business customers for years, and then back bill them for thousands. Since British businesses are often maximally credit-leveraged, they quickly founder in debt when they are subjected to business shocks of this kind. How do you handle such a situation?



Statutory Demands for Payment


If your company is in debt for more than ₤750 to any one creditor, they are legally allowed to place something called a statutory demand for payment on your business. If you find that your business is faced with such a demand, you need to either negotiate with the creditor to put a repayment plan together within three weeks, or accept the fact that they will place a winding-up petition in court to have the company liquidated. This is something that you need to avoid at all costs.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Is Your Business Missing Out On these New Technologies?



If your Business is running on computers from 1990s, on Windows XP, and browsing with something that has the word “Explorer” in the name, you are definitely missing out on the benefits of modern technologies. In fact, you should hand your IT critter his final paycheck, and go boldly into the 21st century.

Technology is no longer some mysterious black box that no one understands. It is an integral part of our daily lives. Eschewing technological advancement is like rejecting indoor plumbing. If your business is not taking full advantage of today’s tech, you don’t look like the sage, cautious master of industry you envision. You just look like an idiot.



A bank that does not offer remote check deposit via a Smartphone camera will not even be considered by anyone younger than 35. A company without a website simply doesn’t exist to people who do most of their business online. And if you think the fax number on your business card makes you look professional, you’ve slept through the last 10 years. Here are some other technologies you don’t want to let pass you by:

There is an App for That

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Three Strategies Successful Entrepreneurs Use for Business Success



These days many people from all walks of life are getting interested in leaving their jobs and pursuing their business dreams. If you have the will and desire to start your own business you should know that beginning to think and act like an entrepreneur is the first step to bring your vision to fruition. With that thought in mind, remember that there are a plethora of success habits that entrepreneurs need to cultivate in order to ensure that they are successful at becoming an entrepreneur and a businessman. Here are three characteristics of a successful entrepreneur:



1. Focus on Self-Improvement

Entrepreneurs realize that they play a very primary and powerful role in determining how successful their businesses become. While they are oftentimes focused on external activity transpiring around them, they are also constantly thinking about ways by which they can improve themselves. This should become your habit. There are innumerable ways that you can improve, and you can get started anywhere you feel comfortable. One particularly effective strategy for self-improvement is taking care of your health. When you operate in optimal physical and mental well-being, your self-confidence increases, you attain greater clarity in thinking, and you decrease your susceptibility to a plethora of degenerative conditions such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

Making two out of one

In view of climate change and the needs of the energy reform, it has become particularly important to significantly increase the effici...