Clean Energy Project 2

My friends at the Clean Energy Project have started a second stage that focuses on quantum chemistry calculation. You might recall [previously: here and here] that the Clean Energy Project consists of screen saver that allows you to donate computer time to do calculations to discover better materials for solar energy.

You can find some nice instructional videos on how to donate your computer time to help discover the next generation of photovoltaics here.


Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
-Groucho Marx

Program: Quantum Effects in Biological Systems

This thursday, the second conference on Quantum Effects in Biological System will be held here at Harvard University. We are very excited to have experts from all over the world here. The aim of this series of conferences is to establish the new field of Quantum Biology. The conference program can be found here.

Picture of Obama Feigning Interest in Excitonics

Flipping through the NY Mag photo gallery titled A History of Obama Feigning Interest in Mundane Things, I found a picture of Excitonics Center‘s Vladimir Bulovic.

Click for A picture of Obama Feigning Interest in the Excitonics Center

The old story of Obama’s visit can be found here.


Dr. Peter Venkman : Back off man. I’m a scientist.
-Ghost Busters

Excitonics Center

The MIT/Harvard Center for Excitonics has been chosen by the Department of Energy as an Energy Frontier Research Center.

The Research Laboratory of Electronics (RLE) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) will be home to one of 46 new multi-million-dollar Energy Frontier Research Centers (EFRCs) announced today by the White House in conjunction with a speech delivered by President Barack Obama at the annual meeting of the National Academy of Sciences. The EFRCs, which will pursue advanced scientific research on energy, are being established by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science at universities, national laboratories, nonprofit organizations, and private firms across the nation.

[…]

The new Center for Excitonics will be a comprehensive center on the science and applications of excitons. It will be based in RLE but include researchers throughout MIT, as well as Harvard University and Brookhaven National Laboratory.

Excitons are the crucial intermediate for energy transduction in low cost, disordered semiconductors. The Center’s researchers will tackle the following questions: How are excitons created and destroyed? How can we control the migration of excitons? How do they move through interfaces and around defects? How can we control the transition between coherence and incoherence, or localization and delocalization? And finally, how can we build excitonic devices that address society’s needs for a new generation of energy technologies? Potential technological outcomes from the Center’s activities include the development of efficient synthetic and room-temperature-reconfigurable light absorbing antennas with sub-5-nm feature sizes for solar cells; stable organic light emitting devices exploiting spin orbit coupling to achieve internal fluorescent efficiencies approaching 100%, and novel nanowire, nanowire heterostructure and nanowire-quantum dot aggregate materials for solid state lighting; and thin film, non-tracking solar concentrators with power efficiencies exceeding 30%.

These are very excitonic exciting news for us. We worked very hard in the proposal, and pushing a shadow Excitonic Center, waiting to see if the real center will be approved. The Excitonics Seminar series has been fantastic so far, with the best speakers in the field. We have very high expectations that the breakthroughs that will come out of our center will lead to more efficient solar energy technologies.


I guess somebody up there likes me.
-The Sirens of Titan

Clean Energy Project, now for Mac and Linux too!

As I mentioned before, the Clean Energy Project is a way for people like you to donate your unused computer time to help us perform complex chemical calculations. These calculations will predict properties of new materials that might be used towards new solar energy panels. It was released for Windows, and quickly become popular in the international press.

The Clean Energy Project screensaver is now Available for Linux and MacOS too!

Become a member and download here.

DisCover: Quantum rules Photosynthesis (follow up)

The cover of the Discovery issue that discusses the work at my lab.
The cover of the Discover issue that discusses the work at my lab.

This is a follow up to the post about the Discover magazine article that discusses our group’s research studying quantum effects in photosynthesis. The issue (February) is out in stores now. I never liked Discover magazine much, but this time I had to purchase it.

Click here to see the full article.

Quantum mechanics is controlling my thoughts

Kids were very different then.  They didn’t have their
heads filled with all this Cartesian Dualism…
-Monty Python on Nostalgia