The Role of CNT and CNT/Composites for the Development of Clean Energy

Abstract

Applicability of CNT/CNT composites in clean energy applications has been demonstrated in a wide range from solar thermal conversion to more advanced antenna solar energy conversion (ASEC). So far the solar photovoltaic cells are the most promising and reliable way of converting solar power directly to electric power. Repeated demonstrations of single-wall carbon nanotubes’ (SWNT) suitability to form ideal p-n junction diodes enhanced the possibility of photovoltaic cells made out of CNT and CNT/composites. Hydrogen is considered to be a clean energy carrier. But high production cost and lack of a feasible storage system hindered the potential use of hydrogen. Photocatalytic water splitting is one of the cheapest ways of producing hydrogen gas. TiO2 has been the most widely used photocatalyst, but it has a low efficiency and a narrow light-response range. Combining TiO2 with CNT is being investigated as a means of increasing the photocatalytic activity and has proven the ability to fabricate an efficient heterogonous catalyst. Also the convenient adsorption of hydrogen in CNT makes it a good candidate for developing a feasible hydrogen storage system. Lack of an easy and effective CNT purification procedure is a major drawback to have such a storage system. Antenna solar energy conversion is an upcoming technology to convert the power of solar radiation directly to electric power utilizing the wave nature (electromagnetic) of light. It has demonstrated the applicability of CNT/CNT composites for this concept too. A good processability of materials is what requires for fabrication of potential complex geometries in ASEC as well as in photovoltaic cells. Polymer/CNT composites are expected to have good processing characteristics of the polymer and excellent functional properties of the CNTs.

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Title
The Role of CNT and CNT/Composites for the Development of Clean Energy
Book Title
Handbook of Polymer Nanocomposites. Processing, Performance and Application
Book DOI
10.1007/978-3-642-45229-1
Chapter DOI
10.1007/978-3-642-45229-1_43
Part of
Volume
Editors
  • Kamal K. Kar Send Email (1)
  • Jitendra K. Pandey Send Email (2)
  • Sravendra Rana Send Email (3)
  • Editor Affiliation
  • 1 Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science Programme, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, Kanpur, India
  • 2 University of Petroleum and Energy Studies (UPES), Dehradun, India
  • 3 School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
  • Authors
  • Samantha Wijewardane Send Email (4)
  • Author Affiliation
  • 4 Clean Energy Research Center, College of Engineering, University of South Florida, 4202 E. Fowler Avenue, 33620, Tampa, FL, USA
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