It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
When light strikes a metal sample it can initiate electrical disturbances in the surface, either as localized excitations called surface plasmons or as moving waves called surface plasmon polaritons. The plasmons can be considered as a sort of proxy for the light, except at a shorter wavelength.
If, moreover, the plasmon energy can be efficiently collected and transferred to an underlying waveguide as part of a solar cell, then the cells’ yield can grow. This what the New South Wales researchers do. They use silver nanoparticles to excite surface plasmons, which enhances light trapping. For 1.25-micron-thick thin-film cells, the enhancement was by a factor of 16 for light with a wavelength of 1050 nm.