Advertisement
Joule
This journal offers authors two options (open access or subscription) to publish research

Sep 21, 2022

Volume 6Issue 9p1965-2218
On the cover: Planar perovskite solar cells (PSCs) exhibit dramatic potential in the application of distributed photovoltaics (e.g., cabin in the forest, traveling caravan) to promote the low-carbon lifestyle. The qualities of the electron transport layer play a crucial part in performance of PSCs. In this issue, Huang et al. propose a ligand-engineered deposition strategy based on the coordination ability of ligands to precisely regulate TiO2 film formation, resulting in the smooth topography (illustrated by the cobblestone arrangement) and interfacial cross-linked structure with perovskite (illustrated by the chalk painting), which are favorable for the performance enhancement of PSCs. Cover art by Hao Huang, Peng Cui, and Meicheng Li of North China Electric Power University....
On the cover: Planar perovskite solar cells (PSCs) exhibit dramatic potential in the application of distributed photovoltaics (e.g., cabin in the forest, traveling caravan) to promote the low-carbon lifestyle. The qualities of the electron transport layer play a crucial part in performance of PSCs. In this issue, Huang et al. propose a ligand-engineered deposition strategy based on the coordination ability of ligands to precisely regulate TiO2 film formation, resulting in the smooth topography (illustrated by the cobblestone arrangement) and interfacial cross-linked structure with perovskite (illustrated by the chalk painting), which are favorable for the performance enhancement of PSCs. Cover art by Hao Huang, Peng Cui, and Meicheng Li of North China Electric Power University.

Commentary

  • Policy-driven solar innovation and deployment remains critical for US grid decarbonization

    • Eric O’Shaughnessy,
    • Kristen Ardani,
    • Paul Denholm,
    • Trieu Mai,
    • Timothy Silverman,
    • Jarett Zuboy,
    • Robert Margolis
    The rapid rise of solar energy technologies provides a case for optimism in achieving grid decarbonization objectives. Yet, solar deployment is unlikely to reach the pace and scale required to meet US decarbonization targets without expanded policy support. Here, we draw fresh insights from the US Department of Energy’s Solar Futures Study to show that policy-supported solar innovation and deployment remains critical for grid decarbonization in the United States.

Previews

  • Crystal ball to foresee energy technology progress?

    • Evelina Trutnevyte,
    • Nik Zielonka,
    • Xin Wen
    In this issue of Joule, Way et al. use data-driven probabilistic technology forecasts to show that rapid global decarbonization until 2070 is likely to have lower costs than no decarbonization. Besides good news for climate policy, Way et al. reopen the discussion on probabilistic methods in energy and integrated assessment modeling.
  • Sustainable ammonia synthesis: Just around the corner?

    • Channing K. Klein,
    • Karthish Manthiram
    Li-mediated electrochemical synthesis of ammonia has been put forward as a possible alternative to the Haber-Bosch process, which is harmful to the environment and requires centralized operation. However, it has historically been plagued by low Faradaic efficiency, rate, and current density. In this issue of Joule, Chorkendorff and co-workers present a version of the process that meets certain industrial benchmarks and unveil new insights into the reaction kinetics along the way. Their observations are borne out by a recent study in Nature from MacFarlane and co-workers that also demonstrates extremely high Faradaic efficiency and high rates toward ammonia synthesis.
  • Solid-electrolyte interphases enable efficient Li-mediated ammonia electrosynthesis

    • Yifu Chen,
    • Shuang Gu,
    • Wenzhen Li
    The function and composition of solid-electrolyte interphases in lithium-mediated ammonia electrosynthesis are important yet largely unknown. Recently in Joule and Nature, Chorkendorff, Simonov, and their colleagues demonstrated that engineering the solid-electrolyte interphases is essential to boosting ammonia electrosynthesis up to a record-high rate and current efficiency.
  • How to find an ideal thermoelectric material

    • Dan Zhao
    Ionic thermoelectric materials have recently aroused intense research interest because of their promising potential for heat energy conversion. In a recent Cell Reports Physical Science article, Ma et al. presented a comprehensive study of the evaluation parameters from the view of field evolutions of temperature, voltage, and ionic concentration.
  • Electrochemical conversion of CO2 to long-chain hydrocarbons

    • Di-Jia Liu
    Reporting recently in Nature Catalysis, Zhou et al. disclosed a family of nickel oxygenate-derived electrocatalysts that can convert CO2 to linear and branched C3 to C6 hydrocarbons with the combined Faradaic efficiencies of up to 6.5%. The study also revealed the polarized Niδ+ associated with Ni–O bonds as the active sites in promoting carbon-carbon bond coupling through mechanistic investigations using advanced characterization tools and computational modeling.

Perspectives

  • Getting to 100%: Six strategies for the challenging last 10%

    • Trieu Mai,
    • Paul Denholm,
    • Patrick Brown,
    • Wesley Cole,
    • Elaine Hale,
    • Patrick Lamers,
    • Caitlin Murphy,
    • Mark Ruth,
    • Brian Sergi,
    • Daniel Steinberg,
    • Samuel F. Baldwin
    Ambitions for power system decarbonization have grown in many countries and regions with some aiming for 100% renewable energy or 100% carbon-free electricity. Although the pathway to achieve most of this is increasingly clear—through wind, solar, transmission, and diurnal storage—solving the last increment, which we refer to as “last 10%,” is significantly more uncertain. This perspective reviews six strategies that could play a role in solving this last 10% challenge and highlights the challenges that accompany each of them.
  • A co-design framework for wind energy integrated with storage

    • Michael J. Aziz,
    • Dennice F. Gayme,
    • Kathryn Johnson,
    • Janelle Knox-Hayes,
    • Perry Li,
    • Eric Loth,
    • Lucy Y. Pao,
    • Donald R. Sadoway,
    • Jessica Smith,
    • Sonya Smith
    The rapid global growth of wind energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions also introduces substantial mismatches with grid demand due to wind intermittency. However, many proposed energy storage integrations are too expensive or are not yet fully developed. Moreover, they can often face social adoption issues. Herein, we propose a broadly defined co-design approach that considers wind energy and storage systems from a full socio-technical-economic-political viewpoint. This approach concept is used to inform a solution roadmap for the development of co-designed wind energy and storage.
  • The influence of strain on phase stability in mixed-halide perovskites

    • Loreta A. Muscarella,
    • Bruno Ehrler
    Perovskite semiconductors emerge as an excellent candidate for highly efficient solar cells and other optoelectronic devices. However, the soft nature of this material makes it particularly sensitive to stress, reducing its stability. Increasing the stability of such materials would enable commercial applications. In this perspective, the authors highlight strategies to manipulate strain to enhance the perovskite phase stability, suggesting applications beyond photovoltaics that can take advantage of such instability.

Review

Articles

  • Empirically grounded technology forecasts and the energy transition

    • Rupert Way,
    • Matthew C. Ives,
    • Penny Mealy,
    • J. Doyne Farmer
    Open Access
    Decisions about how and when to decarbonize the global energy system are highly influenced by estimates of the likely cost. Here, we generate empirically validated probabilistic forecasts of energy technology costs and use these to estimate future energy system costs under three scenarios. Compared to continuing with a fossil fuel-based system, a rapid green energy transition is likely to result in trillions of net savings, even without accounting for climate damages or climate policy co-benefits.
  • Electrosynthesis of ammonia with high selectivity and high rates via engineering of the solid-electrolyte interphase

    • Shaofeng Li,
    • Yuanyuan Zhou,
    • Katja Li,
    • Mattia Saccoccio,
    • Rokas Sažinas,
    • Suzanne Z. Andersen,
    • Jakob B. Pedersen,
    • Xianbiao Fu,
    • Vahid Shadravan,
    • Debasish Chakraborty,
    • Jakob Kibsgaard,
    • Peter C.K. Vesborg,
    • Jens K. Nørskov,
    • Ib Chorkendorff
    Open Access
    Achieving high selectivity at a commercially relevant current density holds the key to the practical applications of electrochemical NH3 synthesis. Here, a record selectivity and NH3 production rate at a current density of −1.0 A cmgeo−2 under 20 bar N2 are achieved through a combination of highly porous Cu electrode and LiBF4-based electrolyte. Theoretical calculations and experimental analysis suggest that a compact and uniform LiF-enriched SEI layer facilitates even lithium plating and suppresses the undesired electrolyte decomposition.
  • Integrated solar-driven high-temperature electrolysis operating with concentrated irradiation

    • Meng Lin,
    • Clemens Suter,
    • Stefan Diethelm,
    • Jan Van herle,
    • Sophia Haussener
    Solar high-temperature electrolysis uses concentrated solar light for both the heating of the electrolyzer stack reactants and the electricity demand (via photovoltaic cells) of the electrolyzer stack. An integrated reactor design, i.e., the proximity of the electrolyzer stack to the solar absorber, enables a significant reduction in heat losses. The endothermic operation of the electrolyzer stack allows for beneficial electrolysis where the solar-to-hydrogen efficiency of the reactor is higher than the photovoltaic efficiency.
  • Featured Article
  • Quantifying the apparent electron transfer number of electrolyte decomposition reactions in anode-free batteries

    • Ming-Yue Zhou,
    • Xiao-Qing Ding,
    • Jun-Fan Ding,
    • Li-Peng Hou,
    • Peng Shi,
    • Jin Xie,
    • Bo-Quan Li,
    • Jia-Qi Huang,
    • Xue-Qiang Zhang,
    • Qiang Zhang
    The electron transfer number (ETN) of electrolyte decomposition reactions is a missing piece of the puzzle of grasping the mechanism of electrolyte decomposition, capacity decay, and SEI formation. A facile yet rigorous “one-stop” methodology was developed to quantify the ETNs of electrolyte decomposition reactions on Li metal anodes, interconnecting the ever-changing reactants (charges, electrolytes, and active Li) and products (SEI). With the knowledge of decomposition kinetics, failure mechanism, and fully described electrolyte decomposition reactions, new perspectives are afforded for advanced electrolytes.
  • High-performance organic photovoltaic modules using eco-friendly solvents for various indoor application scenarios

    • Qiang Wu,
    • Yue Yu,
    • Xinxin Xia,
    • Yuhan Gao,
    • Tao Wang,
    • Rui Sun,
    • Jing Guo,
    • Shanshan Wang,
    • Guohua Xie,
    • Xinhui Lu,
    • Erjun Zhou,
    • Jie Min
    Combining a ternary strategy with green solvents for overcoming the lack of high-performance wide-band-gap acceptors and harmful solvents suitable for indoor applications is demonstrated. The tetrahydrofuran-processed opaque and semitransparent modules not only exhibit promising efficiencies of 21.98% and 14.77% but also possess excellent operational stability. These outcomes drove us to construct a self-powered temperature-humidity gauge and an organic light-emitting diode device, demonstrating and highlighting the special use of this two-in-one ternary device.
  • Photoprotection in metal halide perovskites by ionic defect formation

    • Nga Phung,
    • Alessandro Mattoni,
    • Joel A. Smith,
    • Dieter Skroblin,
    • Hans Köbler,
    • Leo Choubrac,
    • Joachim Breternitz,
    • Jinzhao Li,
    • Thomas Unold,
    • Susan Schorr,
    • Christian Gollwitzer,
    • Ivan G. Scheblykin,
    • Eva L. Unger,
    • Michael Saliba,
    • Simone Meloni,
    • Antonio Abate,
    • Aboma Merdasa
    Open Access
    Metal halide perovskites form defects as a response to intense light in order to protect themselves from overheating and degrading. The defects in turn alter the material properties to limit photon absorption, and thereafter, the defects gradually recover and restore the optoelectronic properties. In plants, mechanisms to reduce radiation damage serve the purpose of temporarily limiting the photon dose, and thereby photosynthesis, in order to improve photostability. Such a feature in halide perovskites is promising for their photovoltaic applications.
  • Relaxation of externally strained halide perovskite thin layers with neutral ligands

    • Hanul Min,
    • Sang-Geun Ji,
    • Sang Il Seok
    FAPbI3 perovskite films are deposited with a higher band gap than their theoretical value due to compressive strain by the thermal expansion coefficient mismatch. Addition of MACl to the precursor solution increases the preferred orientation of perovskite film but also increases the microstrain. An appropriate amount of trioctylphosphine mitigates the preferred orientation from MACl and also reduces the microstrain.
  • Featured Article
  • 24.8%-efficient planar perovskite solar cells via ligand-engineered TiO2 deposition

    • Hao Huang,
    • Peng Cui,
    • Yan Chen,
    • Luyao Yan,
    • Xiaopeng Yue,
    • Shujie Qu,
    • Xinxin Wang,
    • Shuxian Du,
    • Benyu Liu,
    • Qiang Zhang,
    • Zhineng Lan,
    • Yingying Yang,
    • Jun Ji,
    • Xing Zhao,
    • Yingfeng Li,
    • Xin Wang,
    • Xunlei Ding,
    • Meicheng Li
    The ligand-engineered deposition (LD) strategy based on the coordination ability of ligands (such as tartaric acid) is proposed to regulate TiO2 film and interfacial structure. The resultant planar perovskite solar cells (PSCs) achieve an impressive PCE of 24.8% with a fill factor exceeding 0.83, which is the highest PCE among the TiO2-based planar PSCs reported so far.
  • Direct and stable α-phase formation via ionic liquid solvation for formamidinium-based perovskite solar cells

    • Lingfeng Chao,
    • Yingdong Xia,
    • Xiaozheng Duan,
    • Yue Wang,
    • Chenxin Ran,
    • Tingting Niu,
    • Lei Gu,
    • Deli Li,
    • Jianfei Hu,
    • Xingyu Gao,
    • Jing Zhang,
    • Yonghua Chen
    FAPbI3 perovskite, which is prone to phase transition, is currently the best material to further improve the efficiency of single-junction perovskite solar cells (PSCs). We achieved efficient and stable FAPbI3 perovskites by a one-step method without antisolvent using ionic liquids (ILs) to control the precursor solution at the molecular level in humid air. The resulting optimized solar cells achieved efficiencies close to 24% with long operational stability over 1,000 h.
Advertisement
Advertisement