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MOSCOW, June 22. /TASS/. An international research team has found out how the current propagates in the perovskite, a mineral for the first time discovered in the Ural Mountains in 1839. This study has helped to shed a light on the nature of perovskite, which is a very perspective material for solar energetics, said the press service of Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT).
"Many properties of perovskites remain puzzling for scientists, but we have unravels one of the conundrums and namely the conduction mechanism of one of the most common perovskite," MIPT said.
The perovskite, a mineral composed of calcium titanate, is able to transform the light into electricity in a more efficient way than other materials used nowadays. The Science journal has included perovskite in the Top 10 Breakthroughs-2013 as a perspective material for solar energetic. The material can be used to produce flexible solar batteries without using rare-earth metals, which would help to reduce costs of panels.
To clarify the conduction mechanism of perovskites, the scientists have transmitted the electric current of different frequency through the samples and measured the changes in phase shifts and attenuation of current intensity in a wide temperature range from -263 to 27 centigrade.
The researchers have concluded that the perovskite possesses typically a polaron conductivity. The polaron is an electron moving in a periodical crystal, interacting with atoms of the lattice, and changing the crystal configuration.
The scientists believe that this study will assist in further theoretical analysis and prediction of new perovskite features. For example, there is already a high-efficiency perovskite-based device for separating water into oxygen and hydrogen. Perovskites can also be used as LEDs, however, they are currently only applicable at the temperature of liquid nitrogen.
The results of the study have been published in Physical Review B.
The structure of perovskite. Green balls - praseodymium atoms, red - Oxygen, blue - TitanMIPT press service