Recent News


Watching atoms move in hybrid perovskite crystals reveals clues to improving solar cells

The discovery of nanoscale changes deep inside hybrid perovskites could shed light on developing low-cost, high-efficiency solar cells. Using X-ray beams and lasers, a team of researchers led by the University of California San Diego discovered how the movement of ions in hybrid perovskites causes certain regions within the material to become better solar cells than other parts. Full Story


Shirley Meng featured on ECS podcast

NanoEngineering professor and SPEC Director Shirley Meng is featured in an in-depth interview on the Electrochemical Society (ECS) podcast. Full Story


Engineers develop tools to share power from renewable energy sources during outages

 A team of engineers at the University of California San Diego has developed algorithms that would allow homes to use and share power from their renewable energy sources, such as solar panels, during power outages. The approach involves strategically disconnecting the devices, called solar inverters, from the grid.  Full Story


From Theory to Microgrid: New Ideas from the Sustainable Power and Energy Center Research Summit

Software that can design new materials for energy storage. X-ray visualization techniques to “see” inside batteries and solar cells. Green processes for making batteries. These were some of the projects presented at the Sustainable Power and Energy Center (SPEC) Research Summit at the University of California San Diego on July 18. Full Story


Nanoengineer receives award from Energy Department to advance solar power technologies

University of California San Diego nanoengineering professor David Fenning has received an award from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative to lead a new project aimed at advancing research in solar photovoltaic technologies. The project will focus on developing a high resolution tool that can detect moisture in photovoltaic modules and predict how it will affect the modules’ performance. Full Story


Electrolytes made from liquefied gas enable batteries to run at ultra-low temperatures

Engineers at the University of California San Diego have developed new electrolytes that enable lithium batteries to run at temperatures as low as -60 degrees Celsius with excellent performance -- in comparison, today's lithium-ion batteries stop working at -20 degrees Celsius. The new electrolytes also enable electrochemical capacitors to run as cold as -80 degrees Celsius -- their current limit is -40 degrees Celsius. Full Story


Nuvve and UC San Diego to Demonstrate Vehicle-to-Grid Technology through Energy Commission Grant

The United States is home to more than half a million electric vehicles. What if all those vehicles could be turned into virtual power plants, feeding energy back into the grid while connected via a charger? Thanks to a $7.9 million grant from the California Energy Commission, San Diego-based Nuvve Corporation will demonstrate how this technology could work on a large-scale with help from UC San Diego. Full Story


South 8 Technologies wins Clean Tech prize at UC San Diego Entrepreneur Challenge

A new battery technology that will allow electric vehicles to travel farther on a single charge -- with significant improvement in safety and cold weather performance -- received the Clean Tech top prize of $60,000 in the 10th annual UC San Diego Entrepreneur Challenge pitch competition on May 30, 2017. Full Story


Printed, flexible and rechargeable battery can power wearable sensors

Nanoengineers at the University of California San Diego have developed the first printed battery that is flexible, stretchable and rechargeable. The zinc batteries could be used to power everything from wearable sensors to solar cells and other kinds of electronics. The work appears in the April 19, 2017 issue of Advanced Energy Materials.    Full Story


UC San Diego nanoengineers developing next-gen solar cells in collaboration with EMSL

To engineer the next generation of low-cost, high-efficiency solar panels, the team is using capabilities and expertise at the Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory, or EMSL, a DOE Office of Science user facility, to understand how solar cells work at the molecular level. Full Story