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Tiny Solar, Big Excitement

By January 29, 2012

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Research into small-scale solar energy applications is yielding big results, as seen in two recent advances:

  • A smart phone screen with embedded thin-film hydrogenated amorphous silicon solar technology can capture wasted light that escapes around the edges of the screen. This experimental system with "photovoltaics, transistors, and supercapacitor yielded a system with an average efficiency of 11 percent and peak efficiency of 18 percent."
  • University researchers have found a way to capture energy from infrared light by using solar cells with embedded charged quantum dots. Theirs is a "nanomaterials-based technology that has the potential to increase the efficiency of photovoltaic cells up to 45 percent."

Introduction to photovoltaics

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