Friday, March 7, 2008

Painting on the Solar Cells

Swansea University of the United Kingdom and steel Manufacturer Corus are working on developing a steel sheet coated with paint based on dye-sensitised solar cells. This material is less efficient at converting energy than existing solar panels, but the fact that it is cheaper and can be applied to the entire surface of a structure and is more durable means that it is a great addition to the family of up and coming solar power products.

Team leader David Worsley and doctoral student Maarten Wijdekop claim this technology should be available within the next three years. Mark Ratner of the Northwestern University in Chicago is skeptical but still impressed by the groups efforts. Mark believes that getting electrons back into the dye will be difficult.

Being able to apply paint that can capture the energy to the sun on cars, buildings, fences, airplanes, ships, etc. would be a great leap forward for sustainable energy.

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