Would you like to help find new compounds for organic solar cells? By participating in the Harvard Clean Energy Project you can donate idle computer time on your PC for the discovery and design of new materials.
The Clean Energy Project (CEP) is a virtual high-throughput discovery and design effort for the next generation of plastic solar cell materials. We study millions of molecular candidate structures to identify suitable compounds for the harvesting of renewable energy from the sun, as well as for other organic electronic applications.
The scale of this study requires a correspondingly large computational resource, which is provided by distributed volunteer computing on the World Community Grid (WCG). This virtual supercomputing platform was founded by IBM to harvest idle computing time and utilize it for philanthropic research. Participants can donate their spare computing time by running the supported science applications on their personal computers, either on low priority in the background or in screensaver mode during idle periods. In the CEP, we employ a custom version of the Q-Chem 3.2 package, which was ported to the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC) environment. From the user perspective, participation in a WCG project is fully automated and usually does not require any input or maintenance beyond the initial setup. Presently, more than 600,000 users have signed up 2,300,000 computers to the various WCG projects (as of June 2013). You can contribute to this effort by joining the WCG and signing up for this project!