Exploration of integrated solar supercapacitor devices for solar energy conversion and storage
Singh, Utkarsh Ashok
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As the world’s population is growing and moving towards the modernization, the demand of energy is gradually increasing every day. At the current rate of consumption of energy, the demand is to be increased by 65% by the year of 2030. As in today’s date, fossil fuels are still the leading energy provider in electricity, crude oil, natural gas and specially coal. The world has already taken a step forward to introduce renewable sources of energy like solar, wind, geothermal, hydrogen fuel cells and hydro power energy sources, which have proven an excellent replacement for fossil fuels with minimum carbon emissions. Solar energy has proven to be one of the best major alternatives for the replacement of fossil fuels. Over the past few years, researchers have grown to design and develop third generation of solar cells and energy storage devices and integrate them to develop high performance integrated device. A tremendous amount of literature review is presented in this thesis report about the previous work done in development of solar cells and supercapacitors. Here, we have focused on developing a hybrid integrated device capable of harvesting and storing energy. Our hybrid integrated device consists of Dye Sensitized Solar Cells as energy harvester and Supercapacitor which is a two-electrode mode energy storage device. We thoroughly investigated both these devices as separate research, demonstrating excellent performance of both devices separately. A new type of supercapacitor which is based on carbon and graphite electrodes with a KOH aqueous electrolyte is introduced here. Our Supercapacitor reached to a maximum specific capacitance of 12.86 f/g per electrode and 110.33 W/kg power density. Finally, we integrated both Dye Sensitized Solar Cell device and Supercapacitor device to construct an integrated device reaching a maximum overall performance efficiency of remarkable 1.6 % which is still good as compared to other literatures. We believe, these devices will be leading the application of solar energy storage and in flexible, wearable electronics.
Thesis (M.S.)-- Wichita State University, College of Engineering, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering