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New low-cost conversion of sun to electricity

Monday 27 July 2015

Everything we see is reflected light from the sun. In addition, the sun provides a superabundance of solar energy, and as such it is one of our most promising alternative energy sources. American scientists have now discovered a counter-intuitive way of dramatically reducing the cost of harvesting sunlight.

The sun already answers our need to see with clarity – and it would now seem that the sun could also provide an answer to mankind’s burgeoning power requirements, according to new research produced by Scientists from the University of Michigan.

Using a counter-intuitive approach based on the use of gallium arsenide solar cells, the research team have come up with a system which they claim would incur only 3% of the current production cost, and which could produce an energy harvest 2.8 times greater than planar solar cells without tracking.

If the hypotheses prove to be right, the research will be a significant step towards removing the cost barriers to the widespread deployment of lightweight and high-performance solar panels worldwide.

Sources:

  1. Nature:
    Transforming the cost of solar-to-electrical energy conversion.

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Light News

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