Section: Archived News Stories

Q&A: Reports from the Frontline of Ideas for a Sustainable Planet

December 20th, 2011 ›


by Lauren Chambliss

Cornell's faculty works at the epicenter of a global effort to understand and ultimately provide workable solutions to urgent environmental, ecological and energy challenges to the planet.

A few of the more than 300 professors working on sustainability projects in the Colleges of Engineering; Agriculture and Life Sciences; Arts and Sciences; and Architecture, Art and Planning; and at the Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future answer some provocative questions.

Cornell researchers are developing viable renewable energy sources.  What looks most promising to you?

Our recent research marks important and potentially transformative steps toward realizing the technological potential of nanomaterials in future solar cells. We have created novel nanocrystal quantum dot tandem solar cells that efficiently harvest solar energy in thin film devices processed from solution. This achievement marks the convergence of two important solar cell concepts: low-cost processing and engineering to efficiently absorb and convert the broad spectrum of solar energy. Essentially, this is a way to harvest more of the sun's power for less cost.
- Tobias Hanrath, assistant professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Check out Ezra Magazine, Winter 2012 to view entire story.