||The increasing demand for the utilization of existing fossil, bio derived fuels and renewable resources, growing global environmental concerns including green-house gas emissions, and increased demand for efficient stationary and mobile power generation technologies have led to considerable progress in recent years in various clean energy generation systems. The main challenge in solar photovoltaic (PV) electric technology is to reduce the cost and use earth abundant elements for manufacturing reliable, efficient PV devices for global clean energy needs. A promising pathway to reduce PV cost is the use of thin-film technologies in which thin layers of earth-abundant photoactive materials are deposited inexpensively on large-area substrates. Unlike PV technologies, concentrating solar power (CSP) has an inherent capacity to store heat energy for short
periods of time for later conversion to electricity using thermoelectric (TE) technology. When combined with thermal storage capacity, CSP and TE systems can continue to produce electricity even when clouds block the sun or after sundown. This combined system has the ability to provide reliable electricity that can be dispatched to the grid when needed, including after sunset to match late evening peak demand or even around the clock to meet base-load demand. The challenges in solar PV, CSP, and TE technologies are to reduce the cost of the device and increase the efficiency and reliability. The Department of Energy has recently initiated the Sunshot Initiative with a target of $ 1/Watt for installed system price.
This symposium will focus on both the scientific and technological aspects of various solar electric, solar thermal, thermoelectric and thermal storage technologies. Emphasis will be on design and development of new materials, mechanistic understanding of energy conversion processes, system design and development, and existing and future applications. The symposium will provide an excellent forum for scientists and engineers from academia, national laboratories and industry to present the latest findings in various energy conversion technologies. In addition, the symposium will provide a venue for fruitful interaction and exchange of ideas. It will also educate students and researchers in the nationally and globally important areas of energy conversion science and the related technologies.
Proposed session topics:
• Solar – conventional and emerging materials systems and applications, low cost fabrication processes, and performance degradation issues
• Reaction pathways, role of microstructures, and growth kinetics in the formation of new materials such as CZTS layers using solution-based processing for improving efficiency
• Novel thermoelectric materials and systems
• Thermoelectric devices
• Thermal energy storage: materials, systems and applications
• Nanostructured materials for energy conversion applications
• Chemistry of materials, thermodynamic analysis and energy transfer processes
• Mechanistic understanding of charge transport (e.g. electrons and ions) and interfacial phenomena
• Theory, design and computational modeling of materials and systems