Some spary on cells can convert everything into solar panels. A very cheap way of solar harvesting
Researchers from Sheffield just discovered a low-cost, spray-on- paint like solar cell. This type of cell is made of perovskite, a cheap convenient material. As we all know, the spray is already a thing for masses, so the making of it is cheap, leading to small prices for users.
Scientist say the spray can be applied on any surface that cells can remain on. Still, their efficiency can be changed by flexible surfaces or different surfaces.
About 85% of photovoltaic cells are being made of crystalline silicon. This a a quite expensive way to produce solar energy. Plus, the conversion rate reaches 25%.
Perovskite is a mineral crystal structure formed in the calcium titanium oxide mineral species. Its first use was 5 years ago but lacked efficiency. Meaning the scientists made solid cells from polymers, which gave only a 16% efficiency. Efficient organometal halide perovskite-based photovoltaics were demonstrated two years ago.
The Sheffield team found that by spray-painting the perovskite they could make prototype solar cells with efficiency of up to 11 per cent. Nowadays, about 85% of solar cells are from crystalline silicon with a 25% conversion rate.
Researchers from the University’s Department of Physics and Astronomy and Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering have used this method before to make solar cells with organic semiconductors but the perovskite is definitely a major advantage.
Lead researcher Professor David Lidzey said: ‘There is a lot of excitement around perovskite-based photovoltaics. Remarkably, this class of material offers the potential to combine the high performance of mature solar cell technologies with the low embedded energy costs of production of organic photovoltaics.”
If the majority of solar cells are being made with energy intensive materials, perovskites, on the other hand, take much less energy. The scientists believe that by spray-painting the perovskite layer in the air, they will achieve to harvest solar energy using less energy.
Professor Lidzey also sayd: “The best certified efficiencies from organic solar cells are around 10 per cent.”
The Sheffield team discovered that by spray painting the perovskite, they can make prototype solar cells with efficiency a 11% efficiency. Perovskite cells 19% efficiency.
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