Ranchi, Aug.26: The Central University of Jharkhand (CUJ) for the first time used dye extracted from the pericarp of Kamala fruit (red Kamala, Kampillaka, local name Senduri, Rohini or Rori tree) to make an inexpensive, non-toxic ‘sensitizer for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells (DSSCs) or Gratzel cells. The cell directly converts solar energy into electricity.
The work was recently published in the prestigious International Journal of EnergyResearch(IF5.16)(https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/er.7153 ).
Prof. Basudev Pradhan, Assistant Professor, Department of Energy Engineering of the said university, who led the research team of the university, informed this to Lagatar24.com, today sharing the importance of the research.
“The fruit from which the dye was extracted is available in my university campus and it is a medicinal plant. It is used in pharmaceutical industries for its application in cancer, infectious disease treatment, anti-microfilaria, and dermatology treatment besides multipurpose ayurvedic application. We have now found its use in preparing solar cells also,” Pradhan said.
“In this work, we have extracted natural dye from the pericarp of Mallotus phillipensis (kamala tree) fruit which is commonly found in East Asia. The natural dye extract has been used such a photosensitizer for dye-sensitized solar cells. Density Functional calculations on one of the major constituent natural dye rottlerin, have been performed to check the properties and applicability of the proposed dye as a photosensitizer and manifested high electron injection efficiency. The best performing device exhibited a power conversion efficiency of 0.55% under 100 mW/cm2,” Pradhan said, explaining science.
“This kind of non-toxic and biodegradable natural dye can easily be extracted from an inedible source using a very low-cost technique and therefore it can provide the best alternative to the syn-
thetic dye for solar cells,” Pradhan further added.
Those whom Pradhan led during their research included Arup Mahapatra, Prashant Kumar, Jyoti Bhansare, Madhavi Surapaneni and Anik Sen.