About this Research Topic
Experts predict that the world will need 30 TW of energy resources by the year 2050 to maintain economic growth. This causes a continuously growing energy demand that is at present mainly satisfied through the use of fossil fuels, with its consequent impact on the environment. For this reason, there is great interest in the search for clean and renewable energy sources that can contribute to the sustainable development of society. The sun is a strong candidate that can offer a fully developed solution for our energy and environmental needs. Therefore, solar cells and other solar harvesting devices can be considered as a mainstream renewable energy resource once their manufacturing cost has decreased to an affordable level compared to other available energy resources.
At the moment, photovoltaic energy has become competitive if used in regions with high annual solar irradiance, but new initiatives are needed to expand solar energy use and to meet global clean energy demand. In addition to harvesting incident solar radiation with greater efficiency, other important goals are the decrease of photovoltaic module costs, the development of new types of devices and modules (flexible for indoor applications and building integration), and the progression of technologies to store this intermittent energy production.
This Research Topic will focus on the technologies and design of materials for the challenge of sustainable renewable energy. It is dedicated to contributions in the development of new materials and devices for the conversion of solar energy into electrical and chemical energy. All areas of solar energy harvesting research are welcome, including the development of novel materials, fabrication of devices and modules, as well as their stability and standardization. This project also focuses on materials and nanomaterials used in artificial photosynthesis and solar fuel production. Emphasis is also devoted to advanced characterization techniques, non-conventional synthesis and processing routes, and modeling of energy-related materials. The editors welcome contributions from researchers of different backgrounds such as chemistry, physics, engineering, biology, etc., working in research areas related to solar energy harvesting.