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Solution-processed perovskite (PSC) solar cells have achieved extremely high power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) over 20%, but practical application of this photovoltaic technology requires further advancements on both long-term stability and large-area device demonstration. Here, an additive-engineering strategy is developed to realize a facile and convenient fabrication method of large-area uniform perovskite films composed of large crystal size and low density of defects. The high crystalline quality of the perovskite is found to simultaneously enhance the PCE and the durability of PSCs. By using the simple and widely used methylammonium lead iodide (MAPbI ), a certified PCE of 19.19% is achieved for devices with an aperture area of 1.025 cm2, and the high-performing devices can sustain over 80% of the initial PCE after 500 h of thermal aging at 85 °C, which are among the best results of MAPbI -based PSCs so far.


The fabrication of high-quality cesium (Cs)/formamidinium (FA) double-cation perovskite films through a two-step interdiffusion method is reported. Cs FA PbI Br films with different compositions are achieved by controlling the amount of CsI and formamidinium bromide (FABr) in the respective precursor solutions. The effects of incorporating Cs+ and Br− on the properties of the resulting perovskite films and on the performance of the corresponding perovskite solar cells are systematically studied. Small area perovskite solar cells with a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 19.3% and a perovskite module (4 cm2) with an aperture PCE of 16.4%, using the Cs/FA double cation perovskite made with 10 mol% CsI and 15 mol% FABr (Cs FA PbI Br ) are achieved. The Cs/FA double cation perovskites show negligible degradation after annealing at 85 °C for 336 h, outperforming the perovskite materials containing methylammonium (MA).


News Article | May 23, 2017
Site: www.rdmag.com

Mechanical parts that can collect and transmit data on their status for predictive maintenance. These are just a few examples of the applications at or near full-scale commercialization that in some way benefit from printable, flexible and wearable electronics (PE). Inks that can conduct electricity – made from materials such as graphite, silver, and copper – are printed on a substrate at high enough density to form a complete electronic circuit, but thin enough to have negligible impact on the substrate thickness. The substrate can be rigid, flexible or even stretchable, such as paper, plastic, fabric or glass. These inks can be applied through traditional printing processes through fast and inexpensive automated processes, such as those used in the commercial printing industry for newspapers and magazines. Components can also be embedded though additive manufacturing processes, such as 3D printing or in-mold electronics. A related field involves conductive yarns which can be woven into fabric to create smart garments. PE can be used to create discreet components such as displays, conductors, transistors, sensors, light emitting diodes, photovoltaic energy capture cells, memory, logic processing, system clocks, antennas, batteries, and low-voltage electronic interconnects. These can be integrated into simple systems that, for example, can record, store, and then transmit temperature information. Fully functional electronic systems can be created in this way, or discreet components and sub-systems can be produced to function as part of a hybrid solution with conventional silicon-based integrated circuits or components. Compared to traditional silicon, PE components are lighter, thinner, cheaper to manufacture and capable of being flexible or even stretchable. As an additive technology, they can be produced without the capital-intensive manufacturing processes typical of silicon that are often wasteful and environmentally harmful. With PE, electronics can be embedded into printed 3D devices and components. We can enable a new generation of wearable healthcare technologies, smart fabrics, flexible electronics, connected homes that conserve energy, and even smart packaging that can reduce food and packaging waste. Here are a few examples: OPV cells use conductive organic polymers or small organic molecules for light absorption and charge transport to produce electricity from sunlight by the same photovoltaic effect used by conventional solar cells. This technology is another example of the switch from silicon to carbon-based electronics, with the resulting benefits of low cost, high production volume and significant environmental benefits. These flexible solar cells based on thin films can potentially be incorporated into a variety of materials— from window blinds to glass and roofing materials. A building’s entire exterior could be turned into a power generator, in a far more flexible and cost-effective way than is possible with conventional inorganic solar cells. In addition to energy harvesting applications for residential and commercial buildings, OPV also has applications in automotive, point-of-sale and advertising, apparel and consumer electronics. New high sensitivity OPVs, such as those from CPEIA Member company Wibicom, can even harvest ambient light for low-power applications such as self-powered sensors and self-powered antennas. But some technical hurdles remain to be overcome for mass adoption of OPV to be achievable within another decade. Work is ongoing around the globe to increase the efficiency, stability and strength of organic cells. The industry’s goal is to develop OPV cells suitable for mass production that can deliver a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of least 10 percent for 10 years. PE is ideal for additive manufacturing processes like 3D printing and in-mold electronics, to embed functionality inside a part or assembly. This reduces the bulk and expense of external hard wiring to connect electronic systems and assemblies. By the same token, intelligence can be added to a part with low-cost printed electronic tags, labels and serialized sensor matrices. These are digital fingerprints that can be used to identify and authenticate a part. With PE tags and sensors, parts and assemblies can collect and transmit data on their use and usage conditions, heat, stress and so forth. All this data can be collected and stored in the cloud, for remote monitoring and predictive analytics to carry out preventative maintenance and repair. This intelligence can be economically added to anything from a wind turbine blade, to a building systems such as elevators and HVAC, or any of the subsystems or structural members found on automobiles, aircraft and so forth. Anyone who uses a blood glucose monitor is already using a printed sensor – it’s on the disposable test strip. This kind of sensing technology has been on the market for some time. The next step is to develop the conductive ink and paste, substrate and enclosure materials needed for more rugged and long-term applications. Efforts are already well underway. Market research firm IDTechEx predicts the overall market for printed sensors will reach US$7.6 billion by 2027. Wearable technology has gone mainstream in a few short years. Many of us are taking advantage of devices worn on our person to enhance our athletic performance, monitor health and fitness indicators such as heart rate and breathing, and ensure the wellbeing and safety of the elderly. Wearable devices already on the market include bracelets, watches and necklaces, as well as athletic wear such as sports bras and shirts. We even have smart temperature stickers that monitor a child’s vital signs during sleep. The discrete form factors, flexibility and cost advantages of PE versus conventional electronics are crucial to make most of these devices and applications affordable and practical. Another rapidly growing application area is smart garments and textiles. Take, for example, OMSignal. This Canadian company develops functional smart apparel to help people live active, fit and healthy lives. It is, for example, the smart textile and software technology behind Ralph Lauren’s PoloTech collection. Last year, OMSignal launched the OMBra. From a biomechanical standpoint, this smart garment is designed to absorb the strain and pressure of running. But it is also a piece of fitness technology, equipped with three heart rate sensors, a breathing wire (the first on the market) and an accurate motion/accelerometer sensor. Patent-pending algorithms in the OMbra app combine heart rate and breathing to provide personalized feedback. The more a woman runs, the more the app adapts to her body so she can meet her weight goals and safely improve her training. Where is the PE market going? Global revenues for products using PE in 2016 is estimated at US$26.9 billion, an annual increase of 31.8 per cent since 2010. Consulting firm Smithers Apex expects the market to grow to an estimated US$43 billion by 2020. A separate forecast from IDTechEx predicts a US$70-billion market by 2024, for applications ranging from organic LEDs (OLEDs) to conductive inks for a variety of applications. Hundreds of millions of dollars in joint funding initiatives between U.S. industry, academia and government have been announced in the past few years to create the Flexible Hybrid Electronics Manufacturing Institute, The Revolutionary Fibers and Textiles Manufacturing Innovation Institute, and the Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute. As the united voice of Canada’s PE sector, the Canadian Printable Electronics Industry Association (CPEIA) is working to secure similar multi-stakeholder support for comparable industry-driven development and commercialization initiatives here in Canada. From May 24-26 at Centennial College in Toronto, Canada, the CPEIA will host CPES2017. This is Canada’s premier conference and trade show exhibition dedicated to printable, flexible and wearable electronics. Visit www.cpes2017.ca to learn more.


Nonfullerene polymer solar cells (PSCs) are fabricated with a perylene monoimide-based n-type wide-bandgap organic semiconductor PMI-F-PMI as an acceptor and a bithienyl-benzodithiophene-based wide-bandgap copolymer PTZ1 as a donor. The PSCs based on PTZ1:PMI-F-PMI (2:1, w/w) with the treatment of a mixed solvent additive of 0.5% N-methyl pyrrolidone and 0.5% diphenyl ether demonstrate a very high open-circuit voltage (V ) of 1.3 V with a higher power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 6%. The high V of the PSCs is a result of the high-lying lowest unoccupied molecular orbital (LUMO) of −3.42 eV of the PMI-F-PMI acceptor and the low-lying highest occupied molecular orbital (HOMO) of −5.31 eV of the polymer donor. Very interestingly, the exciton dissociation efficiency in the active layer is quite high, even though the LUMO and HOMO energy differences between the donor and acceptor materials are as small as ≈0.08 and 0.19 eV, respectively. The PCE of 6% is the highest for the PSCs with a V as high as 1.3 V. The results indicate that the active layer based on PTZ1/PMI-F-PMI can be used as the front layer in tandem PSCs for achieving high V over 2 V.


News Article | February 15, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION IN THE UNITED STATES OR OVER UNITED STATES WIRE SERVICES NEWS RELEASE Petrocapita Income Trust (CSE:PCE.UN)(CSE:PCE.UN.CN) ("Petrocapita" or the "Trust") announces that it has closed a Purchase and Sale Agreement ("PSA") on February 9, 2017 for all of the Canadian oil and gas properties and assets of Maha Energy Inc. ('Maha") for $1,650,000 (plus or minus any adjustments pursuant to the PSA post-closing). The effective date of the transaction is January 1, 2017. The assets were acquired by issuance to Maha of cash due within the year and a convertible debenture secured by the assets acquired in the total amount of $1,650,000.00. The term of the debenture is 7 years, carries an interest rate of 6%, is amortized over 7 years beginning on March 15, 2017, and is convertible into common trust units of Petrocapita on or after December 31, 2017 at the volume weighted average trading price of such unit on the principal market for such units for each of the last 20 trading days prior to the date of conversion set by the exercise of the option to convert. The acquisition of the Maha assets results in the Trust's increasing its working interest in 20 heavy oil wells, 2 produced water disposal wells, and a produced water disposal facility with associated produced water disposal flowlines to 100% from approximately 58%. Details related to the Trust's reserves and facilities valuations and secured convertible debenture closings to date related to the acquisition and development capital have been filed with the Canadian Securities Exchange (www.theCSE.com). Petrocapita Income Trust is a Specified Investment Flow Through trust developing and acquiring heavy oil production and infrastructure assets in the Lloydminster area of east central Alberta and west central Saskatchewan through its wholly owned subsidiary, Petrocapita Oil and Gas LP. Petrocapita owns or has interest in 435 gross (416.3 net) oil wells, 89 gross (20 net) gas wells, 19 produced water disposal facilities, 3 custom oil processing facilities, 3 natural gas compressor stations, 72.75 km in pipelines, oilwell service rigs, fluid haul tractors and trailers, motor graders, and wellsite processing equipment. It is seeking accretive opportunities to acquire both oil production and complimentary midstream assets during a cyclical low in the oil and gas markets. This news release contains certain forward-looking information as defined under applicable securities legislation. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, with respect to activities, circumstances, events, outcomes and other matters that Petrocapita forecasts, plans, projects, estimates, expects, believes, assumes or anticipates (and other similar expressions) will, should or may occur in the future, are considered forward-looking information. In particular, forward-looking information contained in this news release includes, but is not limited to, information and statements concerning the Offering; the securities to be issued pursuant to the Offering and the timing of such issuance; the use of proceeds from the Offering; the completion of potential acquisitions, including the cost and timing of completion of same; the magnitude of obligations and liabilities assumed in connection with acquisitions; the degree to which potential acquisitions may be debt funded; and the estimate of follow-on capital expenditure requirements in respect to potential acquisitions of oil and gas properties. The forward-looking information provided in this news release is based on management's current beliefs, expectations and assumptions, based on currently available information as to future events (including the outcome and timing thereof). Petrocapita cautions that assumptions have been made regarding, the use of proceeds, liquidity, plans for future operations, the ability of Petrocapita to complete acquisitions, the magnitude of obligations and liabilities assumed in connection with acquisitions, timing and amount of future capital expenditures, and Petrocapita's investment objectives and strategies, all of which are subject to all of the risks and uncertainties normally incident to the acquisition, development, production and sale of oil and gas. These risks include, but are not limited to: the inability to raise capital on the terms of the Offering in a timely manner or at all; the inability to source and complete acquisitions; unanticipated operational and development issues which escalate capital expenditure requirements; volatility in market prices and demand for crude oil; general economic, market and business conditions; the loss of key personnel; the failure to realize the benefits of acquisitions made; the inability to generate sufficient cash flow from operations to meet current and future obligations; unforeseen liabilities and obligations; the inability to obtain required debt and/or equity capital on acceptable terms or at all; adverse regulatory, royalty or tax changes; diversion of management to manage unforeseen business or operating issues; risks related to the acquisition, exploration, development and production of oil and natural gas reserves; and other risks as described in documents and reports that Petrocapita files with the securities commissions or similar authorities in applicable Canadian jurisdictions on the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR). Any of these factors could cause Petrocapita's actual results and plans to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking information. Forward-looking information is subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including those mentioned above, that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations set forth in the forward-looking information. Forward-looking information is not a guarantee of future performance or an assurance that our current estimates, assumptions and projections are valid. All forward-looking information speaks only as of the date of this news release, and Petrocapita assumes no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any obligation to, update or revise any forward-looking information, except as required by law. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. You are encouraged to closely consider the additional disclosures and risk factors contained in Petrocapita's periodic filings on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) that discuss in further detail the factors that could cause future results to be different than contemplated in this news release.


News Article | February 16, 2017
Site: www.marketwired.com

NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION IN THE UNITED STATES OR OVER UNITED STATES WIRE SERVICES Petrocapita Income Trust (CSE:PCE.UN)(CSE:PCE.UN.CN) ("Petrocapita" or the "Trust") announces that it has closed a Purchase and Sale Agreement ("PSA") on February 13, 2017 for 10 wells and associated production equipment in the Kitscoty area of Alberta from Twin Butte Energy Ltd. ("Twin Butte") through Twin Butte's Receiver Manager, FTI Consulting Canada Inc. ("FTI") for $21,825.29 (plus or minus any adjustments pursuant to the PSA post-closing). The Trust estimates future abandonment and reclamation obligations associated with these assets of approximately $485,000. The effective date of the transaction is December 1, 2016. This acquisition compliments the Trust's original 9 wells and associated production equipment, a water disposal facility, and 0.8 km of flowlines and 7 wells with associated production equipment from Twin Butte in April 2015; and the acquisition of 3 wells with associated production equipment from Sahara Energy Ltd. in September 2016, all completed in the same Mannville pool with a cumulative recovery to date of less than 5%. With a 100% interest in 29 wells and a central disposal facility, the Trust believes it is positioned to substantially improve recovery and production in the area. Details related to the Trust's reserves and facilities valuations and secured convertible debenture closings to date related to the acquisition and development capital have been filed with the Canadian Securities Exchange (www.theCSE.com). Petrocapita Income Trust is a Specified Investment Flow Through trust developing and acquiring heavy oil production and infrastructure assets in the Lloydminster area of east central Alberta and west central Saskatchewan through its wholly owned subsidiary, Petrocapita Oil and Gas LP. Petrocapita owns or has interest in 445 gross (426.3 net) oil wells, 89 gross (20 net) gas wells, 19 produced water disposal facilities, 3 custom oil processing facilities, 3 natural gas compressor stations, 72.75 km in pipelines, oilwell service rigs, fluid haul tractors and trailers, motor graders, and wellsite processing equipment. It is seeking accretive opportunities to acquire both oil production and complimentary midstream assets during a cyclical low in the oil and gas markets. This news release contains certain forward-looking information as defined under applicable securities legislation. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, with respect to activities, circumstances, events, outcomes and other matters that Petrocapita forecasts, plans, projects, estimates, expects, believes, assumes or anticipates (and other similar expressions) will, should or may occur in the future, are considered forward-looking information. In particular, forward-looking information contained in this news release includes, but is not limited to, information and statements concerning the magnitude of abandonment and reclamation obligations associated with the acquired assets, and the ability of the Trust to improve recovery and production from its assets in the Kitscoty area of Alberta. The forward-looking information provided in this news release is based on management's current beliefs, expectations and assumptions, based on currently available information as to future events (including the outcome and timing thereof). Petrocapita cautions that assumptions have been made regarding the magnitude of abandonment and reclamation obligations associated with the acquired assets, and the ability of the Trust to improve recovery and production from its assets in the Kitscoty area of Alberta, all of which are subject to all of the risks and uncertainties normally incident to the development, production, reclamation and abandonment of oil and gas assets. These risks include, but are not limited to: unanticipated operational, development and abandonment/reclamation issues; general economic, market and business conditions; the loss of key personnel; the failure to realize the benefits of acquisitions made; unforeseen liabilities and obligations; adverse regulatory, royalty or tax changes; and other risks as described in documents and reports that Petrocapita files with the securities commissions or similar authorities in applicable Canadian jurisdictions on the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR). Any of these factors could cause Petrocapita's actual results and plans to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking information. Forward-looking information is subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including those mentioned above, that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations set forth in the forward-looking information. Forward-looking information is not a guarantee of future performance or an assurance that our current estimates, assumptions and projections are valid. All forward-looking information speaks only as of the date of this news release, and Petrocapita assumes no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any obligation to, update or revise any forward-looking information, except as required by law. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking information. You are encouraged to closely consider the additional disclosures and risk factors contained in Petrocapita's periodic filings on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) that discuss in further detail the factors that could cause future results to be different than contemplated in this news release.


News Article | February 15, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. producer prices recorded their largest gain in more than four years in January amid increases in the cost of energy products, but a strong dollar continued to keep underlying inflation at the factory gate tame. Rising raw material costs are boosting producer prices across the globe, notably in China, which is the biggest source of U.S. imports. But economists still expect overall U.S. inflation to keep climbing gradually given the buoyant dollar. "China saw the biggest price gain since 2011 in January. Given that most of the upward price pressure is the result of raw materials prices returning from the depths of last year, the longer-term view continues to be wary but not alarmed," said Jay Morelock, an economist at FTN Financial in New York. The U.S. Labor Department said on Tuesday its producer price index for final demand jumped 0.6 percent last month, which was the biggest rise since September 2012 and followed a 0.2 percent gain in December. Higher prices for some services also contributed to the increase in January. Economists had expected the PPI to rise 0.3 percent in January. Despite the surge, the PPI only increased 1.6 percent in the 12 months through January after a similar gain in December. A measure of underlying producer price pressures that excludes food, energy and trade services advanced 0.2 percent after edging up 0.1 percent in December. The so-called core PPI rose 1.6 percent in the 12 months through January, slowing from December's 1.7 percent gain. The Federal Reserve has a 2 percent inflation target. Gradually rising inflation together with a tightening labor market and firming economic growth should position the Fed to continue raising interest rates this year. The U.S. central bank raised rates in December and projected three more hikes in 2017. Fed Chair Janet Yellen told U.S. lawmakers on Tuesday that waiting too long to raise borrowing costs would be "unwise." The dollar <.DXY> was trading higher on Yellen's comments, touching a three-week high against a basket of currencies. U.S. government bond prices fell while stocks on Wall Street were mixed. More U.S. manufacturers are reporting paying higher prices for raw materials. The Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) prices index surged in January to its highest level since May 2011. Closely correlated to the PPI, the ISM index has advanced for 11 straight months. Those gains largely reflected increases in the prices of commodities such as crude oil, which are rising due to a steadily growing global economy. Oil prices have climbed above $50 per barrel. But with the dollar strengthening further against the currencies of the United States' main trading partners and wage growth still moderate, the spillover to consumer inflation from rising commodity prices is likely to be limited. A government report on Friday showed import prices excluding fuels fell in January for a third straight month. Data on Wednesday is expected to show the consumer price index increased 0.3 percent last month after a similar gain in December, according to a Reuters survey of economists. "While the trend in inflation remains upward, it is not quickening as fast as today's headline suggests. Inflation is not an immediate issue for the Fed," said Sarah House, an economist at Wells Fargo Securities in New York. Last month, prices for final demand goods increased 1.0 percent, the largest rise since May 2015. The gain accounted for more than 60 percent of the increase in the PPI. Prices for final demand goods advanced 0.6 percent in December. Wholesale food prices were unchanged last month after climbing 0.5 percent in December. Healthcare costs edged up 0.2 percent. Those costs feed into the Fed's preferred inflation measure, the core personal consumption expenditures (PCE) index. The volatile trade services component, which measures changes in margins received by wholesalers and retailers, shot up 0.9 percent in January after being unchanged in the prior month.


News Article | February 21, 2017
Site: onlinelibrary.wiley.com

Organometal halide perovskite materials have become a superstar in the photovoltaic (PV) field because of their advantageous properties, which boost the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of perovskite solar cells (PSCs) from about 3.8% to above 22% in just seven years. Most importantly, such promising achievement is mainly based on its low-cost and solution-processed fabrication technique. One of the most promising and famous approaches to fabricating perovskite is a two-step sequential deposition method because precursor (e.g., PbI ) deposition is controllable, versatile, and flexible. Due to tremendous efforts, great progress has been achieved on the two-step sequential deposition method, which helps to promote the development of PSCs. Herein, the progresses on the two-step sequential deposition method of perovskite layers is reviewed thoroughly. At first, the reaction process and principle is introduced and discussed. Then, the research on the deposition techniques, structures, and compositions of precursors (the first step) is presented. Subsequently, the developments on the conversion techniques, conversion solutions, and growth of large crystals at the second step are introduced. Finally, four important issues on the two-step sequential deposition method will be stated, accompanied with proposed solutions.


The mechanical flexibility of substrates and controllable nanostructures are two major considerations in designing high-performance, flexible thin-film solar cells. In this work, we proposed an approach to realize highly ordered metal oxide nanopatterns on polyimide (PI) substrate based on the sol-gel chemistry and soft thermal nanoimprinting lithography. Thin-film amorphous silicon (a-Si:H) solar cells were subsequently constructed on the patterned PI flexible substrates. The periodic nanopatterns delivered broadband-enhanced light absorption and quantum efficiency, as well as the eventual power conversion efficiency (PCE). The nanotextures also benefit for the device yield and mechanical flexibility, which experienced little efficiency drop even after 100,000 bending cycles. In addition, flexible, transparent nanocone films, obtained by a template process, were attached onto the patterned PI solar cells, serving as top anti-reflection layers. The PCE performance with these dual-interfacial patterns rose up to 8.17%, that is, it improved by 48.5% over the planar device. Although the work was conducted on a-Si:H material, our proposed scheme can be extended to a variety of active materials for different optoelectronic applications.


A fullerene derivative (α-bis-PCBM) is purified from an as-produced bis-phenyl-C -butyric acid methyl ester (bis-[60]PCBM) isomer mixture by preparative peak-recycling, high-performance liquid chromatography, and is employed as a templating agent for solution processing of metal halide perovskite films via an antisolvent method. The resulting α-bis-PCBM-containing perovskite solar cells achieve better stability, efficiency, and reproducibility when compared with analogous cells containing PCBM. α-bis-PCBM fills the vacancies and grain boundaries of the perovskite film, enhancing the crystallization of perovskites and addressing the issue of slow electron extraction. In addition, α-bis-PCBM resists the ingression of moisture and passivates voids or pinholes generated in the hole-transporting layer. As a result, a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 20.8% is obtained, compared with 19.9% by PCBM, and is accompanied by excellent stability under heat and simulated sunlight. The PCE of unsealed devices dropped by less than 10% in ambient air (40% RH) after 44 d at 65 °C, and by 4% after 600 h under continuous full-sun illumination and maximum power point tracking, respectively.

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