Under the aegis of the project association “Environmentally Compatible Applications of Nanotechnology”, universities and research institutions are collaborating in applied research projects for the responsible use of nanotechnology. We aim to develop environmentally safe applications. At the same time, we wish to increase awareness of the opportunities and potentials of these new technologies and promote an objective discussion in public and among experts.
We will be exploring appropriate applications in three core areas, namely “organic photovoltaics”, “energy storage devices” and “thermoelectricity”. This means, for example, that organic and related hybrid photovoltaics rely on easily available and safe materials instead of using resource and energy intensive materials. The same thing applies to thermoelectric materials developed within the association which, unlike most previously researched systems contain no toxic heavy metals. In the area of energy storage devices, we are developing and analyzing carbon-based components of supercapacitors. As a whole, we use these examples to illustrate how nanotechnology can be applied responsibly.