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Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number EP/S002103/1
Title Singlet Fission in Carotenoid Aggregates (SIFICA)
Status Completed
Energy Categories Renewable Energy Sources(Solar Energy, Photovoltaics) 80%;
Not Energy Related 20%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Physics) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr J Clark
No email address given
Physics and Astronomy
University of Sheffield
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 January 2019
End Date 31 December 2022
Duration 48 months
Total Grant Value £851,312
Industrial Sectors Energy
Region Yorkshire & Humberside
Programme NC : Infrastructure, NC : Physical Sciences
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr J Clark , Physics and Astronomy, University of Sheffield (99.999%)
  Other Investigator Professor N Hunter , Molecular Biology and Biotechnolog, University of Sheffield (0.001%)
  Industrial Collaborator Project Contact , University of Cambridge (0.000%)
Web Site
Abstract Singlet fission is the process whereby one photon creates two triplet excited states. If both triplet states could be harvested by a single-junction solar cell, the solar cell efficiency would increase by 1/3. There has been much academic and industrial interest in developing new materials for singlet fission, but to date no material has proved ideal.Carotenoids are the most widespread of the natural pigments, important for photosynthesis, vision, human health and industry (market value $1.2bn). Surprisingly, carotenoids also appear to be excellent candidates for singlet fission sensitizers for solar cells: they have strong absorption, fast (<100fs) and loss-free singlet fission and they have the potential for energy-level tuning due the hundreds of naturally available molecules. However, problems remain: the triplet excitons are generally only short-lived in the solvent-based aggregates we have measured to date (90% decay in 1ns), making triplet harvesting difficult. A further problem is that a mechanism for triplet transfer to the solar cell has yet to be demonstrated. Here, we hope to solve these problems by using synthetic carotenoproteins designed to hold the carotenoid in a conformation which prevents triplet-triplet annihilation, allowing triplets to be long-lived. In addition, we propose to use the proteins to aid triplet harvesting through external spin-orbit coupling or energy transfer to a tethered nanoparticle.We also propose to use these synthetic carotenoproteins as model systems to understand the fundamental energy landscape and dynamics in carotenoids and carotenoid dimers. Carotenoid dimers and aggregates are ubiquitous in nature, but their function is not yet understood. This is mainly due to the experimental and theoretical difficulty in studying them. Here we bring together experts in biochemistry, spectroscopy and theory to study model carotenoproteins with time-resolved spectrosopy and new theoretical models. This combination of resources and expertise provides us with the timely and exciting possibility of really understanding, controlling and exploiting carotenoid-based singlet fission for solar energy harvesting.
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 12/02/19