Course Information

EL5663 Physics of Alternative Energy

Credits: 3.00

This course concentrates on non-petroleum sources of energy include photovoltaic cells, photocatalytic generators of hydrogen from water and nuclear fusion reactors. Topics: advanced physics of these emerging technical areas are introduced in this course. Semiconductor junctions, optical absorption in semiconductors, photovoltaic effect. Energy conversion efficiency of the silicon solar cell. Single crystal, polycrystal and thin film types of solar cells. Excitons in bulk and in confined geometries. Excitons in energy transport within an absorbing structure. Methods of making photocatalytic surfaces and structures for water splitting. Conditions for nuclear fusion. Plasmas and plasma compression. The toroidal chamber with magnetic coils as it appears in recent designs. Nuclear fusion by laser compression (inertial fusion). Small-scale exploratory approaches to fusion based on liquid compression and electric field ionization of deuterium gas. Co-listed as PH 5663.

Prerequisites: PH 2004 Introductory Physics II.