- £65,000 - £70,000
This is a unique opportunity for a Power Engineer to really make their mark on...
- Recruiter: Oaklands Global
Responsible to the MDG Manager for technical capability of mechanical design team.
- Recruiter: Oaklands Global
- England, Hampshire, Fareham
NATS is a leading air navigation services specialist, handling 2.2 million flights in 2013/14, covering the UK and eastern North Atlantic. NATS provides air traffic control from centres at Swanwick, Hampshire and Prestwick, Ayrshire. NATS also provides a
- Recruiter: National Air Traffic Services
- Cumbria, England, Barrow-In-Furness
- Competitive package
As a Principal Engineer - Operability, you will be using your knowledge of submarine systems operation to influence the way the systems are designed, ensuring the Royal Navy personnel will be able to operate the system effectively
- Recruiter: BAE Systems
- Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire
- £31,656 - £41,255
The Open University (OU) has an international reputation for....
- Recruiter: Open University
- Australia (AU)
Shape the future direction of a Department which is currently involved in ground breaking innovative research
- Recruiter: Monash University
- Hinckley, Leicestershire
We currently have a range of UK opportunities to grow your engineering skills in a multinational company of industry experts
- Recruiter: MBDA
- Malvern, Worcestershire
The research and development facility in Malvern is now seeking talented individuals to join our team as Graduate Electronic and Software Engineers.
- Recruiter: Metrasens Limited
- £30,738 - £37,768
You will test new technologies and solutions in the field of electrical power systems through work on a wide range of technical projects.
- Recruiter: University of Strathclyde
- Munich and The Hague
- See job description
We are looking for Engineers and scientists in various technical fields for our locations in Munich and The Hague.
- Recruiter: European Patent Office
Lego-like design improves solar panel efficiency
Covering the surface of solar panels with tiny lego-like bricks of aluminium can increase efficiency and reduce cost
A 22 per-cent increase in solar panel efficiency has been achieved by UK scientists after they covered the surface of those panels with tiny aluminium studs.
The team from Imperial College London has attached rows of 100 nanometres wide aluminium cylinders onto the surface of the solar panels. By doing so, they have managed to change the course of light rays passing through the material, trapping them inside the absorbing layer, thus increasing the panels’ efficiency.
Such a design, resembling at the microscopic level interlocking LEGO building bricks, allows decreasing the amount of the absorbing material used while maintaining high efficiency levels.
"In recent years both the efficiency and cost of commercial solar panels have improved but they remain expensive compared to fossil fuels,” said Dr Nicholas Hylton from the Department of Physics at Imperial College London, the main author of a study published in the journal Scientific Reports.
“As the absorbing material alone can make up half the cost of a solar panel our aim has been to reduce to a minimum the amount that is needed," he said.
Most solar cells used in homes and industry are made using thick layers of material to absorb sunlight. The high costs of these panels, however, have so far been the major limiting factor preventing wider spread of the technology.
Low cost alternatives exist already, using thinner layers of light-absorbing substances. But the efficiency of these panels has been questioned.
In the past, scientists have tried to improve the performance of solar panels using studs of gold and silver to bend the light inside the panels. However, the results were rather disappointing as those metals absorbed part of the light before it even entered the solar panel, decreasing instead of increasing the amount of energy produced.
"The key to understanding these new results is in the way the internal structures of these metals interact with light,” Hylton said, explaining why the experiments with aluminium have been more successful.
“Gold and silver both have a strong effect on passing light rays, which can penetrate into the tiny studs and be absorbed, whereas aluminium has a different interaction and merely bends and scatters light as it travels past them into the solar cells."
The lower price of aluminium compared with silver and gold makes the new design even more attractive.
"The success of our technology, in combination with modern anti-reflection coatings, will take us a long way down the path towards highly efficient and thin solar cells that could be available at a competitive price," Hylton believes.
The researchers hope that in the future, they will be able to build flexible solar panels that could be attached to any flat or curved surface, which could be used to power everything from domestic appliances to portable electronics like laptops.
"Should the UK's engineers be in or out of Europe? The IET sets out its official position on the EU referendum this week - will you agree?"
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