Flexible solar cells may be the wave of the future
Chemical Engineering faculty member Enrique Gomez and his research group are working to make organic, flexible solar cells a viable option to meet future energy demands.
Enrique explains the majority of solar cells today are inorganic, made of crystalline silicon, and expensive to produce. Organic solar cells offer an alternative that is flexible and potentially less expensive.
Dr. Gomez envisions making solar cells as easily as you can print posters or newspapers, printing solar cells like sheets of paper.
The problem is that the bulk of organic solar cells employ fullerene acceptors that's extremely difficult to scale up for mass production.
Dr. Gomez and his group's most recent attempt was documenting the American Chemical Society's Nano Letters journal. View the entire article "Chemical engineers' research may lead to inexpensive, flexible solar cells".
Faculty member Enrique Gomez is helping the shape the future of flexible electronics
Faculty member Enrique Gomez is working on flexible electronics that will lead to a new generation of products and medical treatments.
Imagine tiny smartphones that wrap around our wrists, and flexible displays that fold out as large as a television. Or photovoltaic cells and reconfigurable antennas that conform to the roofs and trunks of our cars. Even implants that can monitor and treat cancer.
Dr. Gomez is one of many researchers investigating flexible electronics at part of Penn State's Materials Research Institute.
Find out more about Dr. Gomez' contribution to this field in the article "Flexible electronics could transform the way we make and use electronic devices" on Penn State Live.
Graduate student Kiarash Vakhshouri receives the 2013 Frank J. Padden Jr. Award
Graduate student Kiarash Vakhshouri of the Enrique Gomez Research Group receives the 2013 Frank J. Padden Jr. Award from the American Physical Society (APS) Division of Polymer Physics.
This award recognizes an outstanding graduate student for Excellence in Polymer Physics Research. Kiarash is the second Penn State graduate student to win this award in the last 5 years (Susan Fullerton Shirey was the 2009 awardee.
Other winners in the past 5 years were from UC Berkeley, UC Santa Barbara, and U Illinois).
Enrique Gomez in the Engineering Penn State Magazine
Enrique Gomez is featured in the alumni section of the Winter 2012 Engineering Penn State Magazine. The article and photo highlight Enrique's involvement in the University Court for the Penn State 2011 Homecoming Celebration.
View the excerpt about Enrique's participation in the Penn State 2011 Homecoming.pdf from the Winter 2012 edition of Engineering Penn State Magazine.
2011 Penn State Homecoming Court Photos
Faculty member Enrique Gomez is featured in photos from the 2011 Penn State Homecoming Parade.
Earlier this fall Dr. Gomez was selected be among the faculty on the University Court for Penn State's 2011 Homecoming.
The 2011 Homecoming court included electrical engineering senior Athena Abate, civil engineering senior Will Sheehan, industrial engineering faculty member Paul Lynch and chemical engineering faculty member Enrique Gomez.
Faculty Member Enrique Gomez will be on the 2011 Homecoming University Court.
Dr. Enrique Gomez will be among the faculty on the University Court for Penn State's 2011 Homecoming.
The University Court includes 8 members of Penn State's faculty and staff, 4 men and 4 women, who have been chosen in recognition of their efforts to inspire undergraduate students here at Penn State.
Homecoming is set for Oct. 14-15. This year's theme is "Forever Lions Endless Pride."
View the story "Four engineers named part of 2011 homecoming court" on Penn State Live.
You can watch Enrique's response to the selection below. Enrique appears about 1:30 minute into the video.
Dr. Enrique Gomez among 70 engineers invited to symposium in China
Faculty member Enrique Gomez has been invited to attend the Chinese-American Kavli Frontiers of Science Symposium on November 5-7, in Shenzhen, China.
The annual symposium brings together distinguished young researchers who have made noteworthy contributions to science and have been identified as future leaders in their fields. Enriquie was selected by a committee of Academy members to attend the event with 70 other young scientists from the U.S. and China.
"Chemical engineer Gomez among 70 engineers invited to China symposium" on Penn State Live.
Graduate students working with Enrique Gomez
win awards at the Emerging Materials for Thin-Film Solar Cells Workshop
Graduate students Changhe Guo and Kiarash Vakhshouri each won separate awards at the Emerging Materials for Thin-Film Solar Cells Workshop hosted by the International Center for Materials Research at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Changhe and Kiarash each won the Best Poster Award, competing against schools such as UCSB, Stanford, Berkeley, Princeton, Cambridge, and Georgia Tech. Changhe and Kiarash are advised by Dr. Enrique Gomez.
Dr. Enriquie Gomez researching the potential of organic solar cells
While silicon solar cells are still the workhorse of first generation photovoltaics, faculty member Enrique Gomez is conducting research to improve the performance of OSCs (organic solar cells) to compete with silicon-based solar cells.
In commercial applictions silicon solar cells have solar energy conversion efficiencies of 14-20 percent, while OSCs have solar energy conversion efficiencies of 8 percent.
The potential for organic solar cells resides in the material. OSCs can be manufatured using cheaper materials, such as plastics. OSCs are lightweight and flexible, allowing more diverse applications. OSCs are simple to produce, some can be manufactured on existing roll-to-roll printing presses.
Dr. Enrique Gomez receives National Science Foundation award
Enrique Gomez recevies a CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation for his project: "Morphology Control Through a Mechanistic Understanding of Structural Evolution in Organic Semiconductor Mixtures."
The project aims to control the morphology of organic semiconductor mixtures to develop inexpensive solar cells capable of efficiently generating electricity from sunlight. Methodologies to promote anisotropic crystal growth and control nucleation will be explored as strategies to tune the morphology by altering the crystallization of photoactive polymers.
The National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program offers the Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of the early career-development activities of those teacher-scholars who most effectively integrate research and education.
Enrique Gomez wins ORAU Powe Award
Assistant Professor Enrique Gomez has been awarded a research grant from the Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) consortium.
Gomez is one of only 32 faculty members receiving a grant, which recognizes faculty for their work in engineering or applied science; life sciences; mathematics and computer science; physical sciences; and policy, management or education.
View the entire Enrique Gomez article on Penn State Live.