Superconducting Solar Cell System
Solar energy can be converted into electric power by solar cells, which represent a potential solution to meet the future energy demand while realizing low carbon emission. However, large-scale implementation of solar cells, subject to efficiency and cost, remains a challenge for solar energy harvesting. Recent breakthroughs in solar cell development have been dependent on specific complex material configurations, such as carbon nanotube solar cells. The characteristics of new material such as superconductors to transmit electricity efficiently without such complex configuration are a proof that alternative approaches are viable. This PhD project will explore the possibility of developing a new generation of solar cell systems based on high temperature superconductors (HTS).
(1) Carry out feasibility analysis by studying existing solar cell technologies and superconductivity to propose a practical superconducting solar cell system;
(2) Analyse the photoelectrochemical behaviour at cryogenic condition and interaction at semiconductor-superconductor interface;
(3) Develop numerical models to simulate the proposed superconducting solar cell system and evaluate the system in terms of power capacity, loss, physical and thermal stability, and cost;
(4) Construct a small-scale low-power superconducting solar cell system and carry out experimental tests.
• 1st class MEng (or equivalent) or a distinctive MSc;
• A first degree in Electrical, Mechanical or Electrical and Chemical Engineering. Related degree programmes with a significant content in electric circuit will also be considered.
• Understanding of superconductors;
• Understanding of solar cells;
• Experience in numerical modelling;
• Experience in experimental measurement;
• Experience of cryogenic experiments.
Please apply by clicking the "Apply Online" button below.
Select the Research Area: "Energy Systems" and clearly state on your application form which project you are applying for and the relevant supervisor.
Fully funded project covers fees and stipend £15,006.
How good is research at University of Edinburgh in General Engineering?
(joint submission with Heriot-Watt University)
FTE Category A staff submitted: 91.80
Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)
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