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Who runs the Clean Energy Project?

The Clean Energy Project (CEP) is an large research collaboration that seeks to theoretically screen millions of organic molecules for potential applications in organic solar cells and other organic electronics. The CEP is led by the Aspuru-Guzik group in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University. Additionally, many collaborators contribute to the project.

What kind of calculations does the CEP do?

Some of the things we probe include molecular energy levels, dipole moments, optimum geometries, molecular wave functions, bonding, and information related to the electronic conductivity through the molecular backbone. Many different theoretical models and approximations are used to generate a statistical best estimate for the properties of a given molecule. Future calculations may cover the response to external fields, vibrational modes, reorganization energies, and transfer integrals.

Where are all these data stored?

The results of the CEP calculations are stored in the Harvard Clean Energy Project Database. It contains data and analyses on 2.3 million candidate compounds for organic photovoltaics. It is an open resource designed to give researchers in the field of organic electronics access to promising leads for new material developments.

Any plans to reproduce some of this in the lab?

Absolutely - we work closely in collaboration with an experimental group at Stanford University. The Bao Group investigates some of our most promising candidate molecules by making prototype devices. Over the past several years we have focused primarily on the infrastructure and data collection, so there is still a lot of great science to be done interpreting the results. We are very happy to be collaborating with strong experimental partners and we believe that this is one of the most exciting features of the Clean Energy Project.

What makes of this all possible?

The dedication of our volunteers. Our crunchers donate their spare computer time using IBM’s World Community Grid. Using this high-throughput, distributed resource, we have been able to collect over 17,000 CPU years worth of data over the course of the project.

How can I contact the CEP team?

You can find our contact information here!

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