October 13, 2006
An innovative process that converts low-energy longwave photons (light particles) into higher-energy shortwave photons has been developed by a team of researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research in Mainz and at the Sony Materials Science Laboratory in Stuttgart. With the skillful combination of two light-active substances, the scientists have, for the first time, manipulated normal light, such as sunlight, to combine the energy in photons with particular wavelengths (Physical Review Letters, October 4, 2006). This has previously only been achieved with a similar process using high-energy density laser light. The successful outcome of this process could lay the foundation for a new generation of more efficient solar cells.