Nature highlights the work of scientist Fernanda Cerda of the Faculty of Science

This week, the prestigious journal Nature highlights in its place “Where I Work” College of Science scientist and researcher Fernanda Cerda, and the work she is doing to build solar cells using natural pigments extracted from local plants. The article in question is entitled “Power plants: producing electricity from flowers and fruits” and talks about Cerda’s work and the conditions in which it is carried out.

According to the College of Science,Cerda, Research Professor in the Biomaterials Laboratory at the Institute of Biological Chemistry, College of Science. He specialized in the field of physical chemistry and since 2013 has been working on solar cells based on natural pigments. These dye-sensitive cells are known as “Grätzel cells” in honor of the Lausanne-based researcher Michael Grätzel, who first reported this possibility and led the development of the idea.

Since yesterday’s publication in Nature, things Serda could never have imagined have happened. Not only did he send congratulations to family, friends and colleagues, but Michael Gratzel himself called the researcher to congratulate her and offer her financial support, the college reports on its website.

“A couple of hours ago I was going to say something, but I just got an email from Graetzel. Let him write to me, congratulate me, tell me he wants to donate so I can continue my research.. I, it’s more than I was asking or expecting.” “Other than the fact that Nature chose me, for reasons I don’t know, because I make it clear that I neither publish in Nature nor dream of it, they have chosen me for a section of the magazine that they seek to shed light on some people. I only know that they seek that message from that person, that interview It motivates a lot of people.”

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As Nature explains, Fernanda Cerda has worked at the University of the Republic for 30 years. In 2019, he developed a prototype board that he tested for nearly two years at the base of the Antarctic. Four months ago, the results were submitted for publication and are still under review.
Regarding her line of research, Cerda said, “It was a huge challenge from the start. It meant learning from scratch, which at that point in my life was a tough decision to make.”

Plus, the researcher finds it great that you have to sit down to study over and over again, because the questions that need to be answered keep popping up and the answers are out of reach. He says he’s always been amazed at searching for answers in a world where they come in the form of partial data, where the biggest challenge is putting together the puzzle.

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