Special Issue "Recent Advances in Nanoelectronics for Energy Conversion, Storage, and Saving"

A special issue of Electronics (ISSN 2079-9292). This special issue belongs to the section "Optoelectronics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Elias Stathatos
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials Lab., Electrical and Computer Engineering Dept., University of the Peloponnese, 26334 Patras, Greece
Interests: nanostructured semiconductors; third generation photovoltaics including (perovskite, dye sensitized solar cells); organic electronics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Emmanuel Kymakis
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Hellenic Mediterranean University, Estavromenos, 71410 Heraklion, Crete, Greece
Interests: organic photovoltaics; graphene; plasmonics; perovskite solar cells; nanotechnology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Dimitris A. Chalkias
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Peloponnese, 26334 Patras, Greece
Interests: perovskite solar cells; dye-sensitized solar cells; nanomaterials; composite materials

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In order to meet the future global energy needs in a sustainable manner, it is important to improve the methods of energy production, storage, and saving. In our days, the development of new materials and device architectures allowing a low-cost, efficient, and stable energy management is undoubtfully of the utmost importance. This Special Issue is designed to provide a platform for sharing discussions on the most recent advances, remaining challenges, and frontiers in energy management by nanoelectronics. Specific topics of interest include, but are not limited to: (a) energy conversion by next-generation and emerging photovoltaic technologies and nanogenerators, (b) energy storage by advanced nanostructured systems, including supercapacitor, battery, and fuel cell technologies, and (c) intelligent energy saving by smart technologies, such as energy-efficient windows (electrochromics), smart lighting, etc. High-quality original papers, short communications, and review articles are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Elias Stathatos
Prof. Dr. Emmanuel Kymakis
Dr. Dimitris A. Chalkias
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Electronics is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Article
Epoxy-Based/BaMnO4 Nanodielectrics: Dielectric Response and Energy Storage Efficiency
Electronics 2021, 10(22), 2803; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/electronics10222803 - 16 Nov 2021
Viewed by 262
Abstract
Compact capacitive energy storing/harvesting systems could play a key role in the urgent need for more energy-efficient technologies to address both energy and environmental issues. Therein, the purpose of the present work is to develop and investigate epoxy/BaMnO4 nanocomposites at various filler [...] Read more.
Compact capacitive energy storing/harvesting systems could play a key role in the urgent need for more energy-efficient technologies to address both energy and environmental issues. Therein, the purpose of the present work is to develop and investigate epoxy/BaMnO4 nanocomposites at various filler concentrations, which could be applicable as compact materials systems for energy storage and harvesting. Broadband dielectric spectroscopy was used for studying the dielectric properties and the relaxation processes of the examined nanodielectrics. The energy storing/retrieving ability of the nanocomposites was also evaluated via DC charge–discharge experiments. The coefficient of energy efficiency (neff) was found for all prepared nanocomposites to evaluate the energy performance of the systems. Dielectric data divulge the existence of two matrix-related relaxations, i.e., α-mode and β-mode, attributed to the glass-to-rubber transition of the polymer matrix and re-orientation of polar side groups, respectively. Interfacial polarization was also identified in the low-frequency and high-temperature region. The 7 phr BaMnO4 nanocomposite exhibits the best performance in terms of the stored and harvested energies compared to all systems. On the other hand, the 5 phr, 3 phr and 1 phr nanocomposites display optimum energy performance, reaching high values of neff. Full article
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Article
Use of Different Metal Oxide Coatings in Stainless Steel Based ECDs for Smart Textiles
Electronics 2021, 10(20), 2529; https://doi.org/10.3390/electronics10202529 - 17 Oct 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 261
Abstract
Electrochromism is the ability of a material to selectively change its coloration under the influence of an external electric current/potential and maintain it even after the power source has been disconnected. Devices that use such a mechanism are known as electrochromic devices (ECDs). [...] Read more.
Electrochromism is the ability of a material to selectively change its coloration under the influence of an external electric current/potential and maintain it even after the power source has been disconnected. Devices that use such a mechanism are known as electrochromic devices (ECDs). Over the years, significant effort has been invested into the development of flexible ECDs. Such electrochromic tapes or fibers can be used as smart textiles. Recently, we utilized a novel geometrical approach in assembling electrochromic tapes which does not require the use of optically transparent electrodes. The so-called inverted sandwich ECD configuration can employ various color-changing mechanisms, e.g., intercalation, redox reactions of electrolytes or reactions on electrode surfaces. One of the most frequently used electrochromic metal oxides is WO3. However, other metal oxides with different coloration responses also exist. In this paper, we explore the use of V2O5 and TiO2 in metal-tape-based ECDs in the inverted sandwich configuration and compare their performance with WO3-based devices. Morphological features of metal oxide thin layers were investigated with scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and the performance of the tapes was investigated electrochemically and spectroscopically. We demonstrate that well-established preparation techniques (e.g., sol–gel synthesis) along with coating approaches (e.g., dipping) are adequate to prepare optically nontransparent fiber electrodes. Depending on the metal oxide, flexible electrochromic fiber devices exhibiting different coloration patterns can be assembled. Devices with TiO2 showed little coloration response, while much better performance was achieved in the case of V2O5 and WO3 ECDs. Full article
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Article
Toward a Scalable Fabrication of Perovskite Solar Cells under Fully Ambient Air Atmosphere: From Spin-Coating to Inkjet-Printing of Perovskite Absorbent Layer
Electronics 2021, 10(16), 1904; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/electronics10161904 - 08 Aug 2021
Viewed by 627
Abstract
Up until now, the vast majority of perovskite solar cells (PSCs) have relied on the spin-coating of perovskite precursor solution under inert fully controlled conditions, with the performance of solar cells that are developed by alternative techniques and under an ambient atmosphere to [...] Read more.
Up until now, the vast majority of perovskite solar cells (PSCs) have relied on the spin-coating of perovskite precursor solution under inert fully controlled conditions, with the performance of solar cells that are developed by alternative techniques and under an ambient atmosphere to lag far behind. This impedes the technology transfer from the laboratory to industrial large-scale production; thus, the investigation of new scalable techniques should be thoroughly considered. The present work constitutes one of the few investigations on the application of inkjet-printing as an advanced alternative technique to the conventional spin-coating technique used for the fabrication of fully ambient air-processed perovskite absorbent layers for carbon-based hole transport layer-free PSCs. A systematic study of the characteristics of the perovskite material and solar cells indicated that the coffee-ring effect combined with poor ink penetration into the mesoporous network of the anode semiconductor were the main reasons for obtaining poor perovskite structure morphology and lower PSC performance by inkjet-printing, which arises from a lower internal quantum efficiency and an increased charge transfer and recombination rate. On the other hand, the crystallinity and optical characteristics of the materials obtained by the compared techniques did not differ considerably, while small differences were observed in the hysteretic behavior and long-term stability of the solar cells. Full article
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Article
Transparent All-Oxide Hybrid NiO:N/TiO2 Heterostructure for Optoelectronic Applications
Electronics 2021, 10(9), 988; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/electronics10090988 - 21 Apr 2021
Viewed by 494
Abstract
Nickel oxide (NiO) is a p-type oxide and nitrogen is one of the dopants used for modifying its properties. Until now, nitrogen-doped NiO has shown inferior optical and electrical properties than those of pure NiO. In this work, we present nitrogen-doped NiO (NiO:N) [...] Read more.
Nickel oxide (NiO) is a p-type oxide and nitrogen is one of the dopants used for modifying its properties. Until now, nitrogen-doped NiO has shown inferior optical and electrical properties than those of pure NiO. In this work, we present nitrogen-doped NiO (NiO:N) thin films with enhanced properties compared to those of the undoped NiO thin film. The NiO:N films were grown at room temperature by sputtering using a plasma containing 50% Ar and 50% (O2 + N2) gases. The undoped NiO film was oxygen-rich, single-phase cubic NiO, having a transmittance of less than 20%. Upon doping with nitrogen, the films became more transparent (around 65%), had a wide direct band gap (up to 3.67 eV) and showed clear evidence of indirect band gap, 2.50–2.72 eV, depending on %(O2-N2) in plasma. The changes in the properties of the films such as structural disorder, energy band gap, Urbach states and resistivity were correlated with the incorporation of nitrogen in their structure. The optimum NiO:N film was used to form a diode with spin-coated, mesoporous on top of a compact, TiO2 film. The hybrid NiO:N/TiO2 heterojunction was transparent showing good output characteristics, as deduced using both I-V and Cheung’s methods, which were further improved upon thermal treatment. Transparent NiO:N films can be realized for all-oxide flexible optoelectronic devices. Full article
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Article
Perylene Based Solution Processed Single Layer WOLED with Adjustable CCT and CRI
Electronics 2021, 10(6), 725; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/electronics10060725 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 739
Abstract
In solution processed single layer white organic light emitting diode (WOLED) applications, the choice of host matrix and optimization of dopant levels represent two crucial parameters to consider. In this work, poly(N-vinylcarbazole) (PVK): 2-(4-Biphenylyl)-5-phenyl-1,3,4-oxadiazole (PBD) and PVK:1,3-bis[(4-tert-butylphenyl)-1,3,4-oxadiazolyl] phenylene (OXD-7) matrices are used as [...] Read more.
In solution processed single layer white organic light emitting diode (WOLED) applications, the choice of host matrix and optimization of dopant levels represent two crucial parameters to consider. In this work, poly(N-vinylcarbazole) (PVK): 2-(4-Biphenylyl)-5-phenyl-1,3,4-oxadiazole (PBD) and PVK:1,3-bis[(4-tert-butylphenyl)-1,3,4-oxadiazolyl] phenylene (OXD-7) matrices are used as hosts for perylene based devices. PVK:PBD presented better compatibility and lower turn-on voltages compared to PVK:OXD-7. Benefiting from the exciplex emission observed at 630 nm, a color rendering index (CRI) value of 90 is reached with the device containing PVK:PBD as the host and 0.1 wt.% of an orange emitting perylene derivative, i.e., PDI. Introduction of the perylene based green emitter, i.e., PTE, in this emitting layer not only caused a fading in the exciplex emission, but also resulted in disappearance of the electroplex peak at 535 nm, which is detected between PVK:PBD and PTE in bare PTE containing devices. Full visible range coverage is achieved by optimizing the PDI:PTE ratio. WOLED containing PVK:PBD:0.06 wt.% PDI:0.03 wt.% PTE presented high CRI (≥95) and adjustable correlated color temperatures (CCT, 3800 K-5100 K). Full article
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Article
Solar Energy Conversion and Storage Using a Photocatalytic Fuel Cell Combined with a Supercapacitor
Electronics 2021, 10(3), 273; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/electronics10030273 - 23 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 859
Abstract
This work studies the production of electricity by a photocatalytic fuel cell and its storage in a supercapacitor. We propose a simple construction, where a third electrode bearing activated carbon is added to the device to form a supercapacitor electrode in combination with [...] Read more.
This work studies the production of electricity by a photocatalytic fuel cell and its storage in a supercapacitor. We propose a simple construction, where a third electrode bearing activated carbon is added to the device to form a supercapacitor electrode in combination with the supporting electrolyte of the cell. The photocatalytic fuel cell is based on a CdS-sensitized mesoporous TiO2 photoanode and an air cathode bearing only nanoparticulate carbon as an oxygen reduction electrocatalyst. Full article
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