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Title: Exploring Light’s Interactions with Bubbles and Light Absorbers in Photoelectrochemical Devices using Ray Tracing

Ray tracing was used to perform optical optimization of arrays of photovoltaic microrods and explore the interaction between light and bubbles of oxygen gas on the surface of the microrods. The incident angle of light was varied over a wide range. The percent of incident light absorbed by the microrods and reflected by the bubbles was computed over this range. It was found that, for the 10 μm diameter, 100 μm tall SrTiO3 microrods simulated in the model, the optimal center-­to-­center spacing was 14 μm for a square grid. This geometry produced 75% average and 90% maximum absorbance. For a triangular grid using the same microrods, the optimal center-­to-­center spacing was 14 μm. This geometry produced 67% average and 85% maximum absorbance. For a randomly laid out grid of 5 μm diameter, 100 μm tall SrTiO3 microrods with an average center-­to-­center spacing of 20 μm, the average absorption was 23% and the maximum absorption was 43%. For a 50% areal coverage fraction of bubbles on the absorber surface, between 2%-­20% of the incident light energy was reflected away from the rods by the bubbles, depending upon incident angle and bubble morphology.
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States). The Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis; Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States). Dept. of Mechanical Engineering
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1168604
Report Number(s):
LBNL--6070E
DOE Contract Number:
AC02-05CH11231; SC0004993
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
30 DIRECT ENERGY CONVERSION; 25 ENERGY STORAGE; 08 HYDROGEN; 14 SOLAR ENERGY; 10 SYNTHETIC FUELS Strontium Titanate; Photoelectrochemical Devices; Water Splitting; Solar Fuels Photovoltaic Energy; Microrod Array; Light Absorption; Optics; Ray Tracing; Genetic Algorithm; Bubbles; Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis; JCAP