Daniel Davies, 2014, Mechanical Engineering
In my internship, I helped a physicist, Bob Street, to research organic solar cells. During the eight weeks I was there, we focused on the degradation of the solar cells due to illumination from both UV and visible light. We focused on organic solar cells because their low cost of mass production and the flexibility of the cells. I carried out a large number of measurements on different solar cells. We looked at the degredation of the cells by examining the variation of their photo current after different amounts of exposure to either visible or UV light. During the internship I learned a tremendous amount about the research process. I was surrounded by a number of outstanding researchers who all had slightly different approaches. I learned how research can be used in a completely for-profit environment and how it can be used to help solve the world’s energy problems. While not related to my major, this internship did teach me some great techniques and I gained a huge amount of confidence in the ability of the human mind to overcome obstacles.