New Transparent Film Used to Make Solar Panels for Homes
November 4, 2010 12:53 PM
comment(s) - last by
Thin, transparent material makes a film capable of absorbing light and generating electricity
U.S. Department of Energy's
Los Alamos National Laboratory and
researchers have created
that can absorb light and generate electricity over large areas, which could be used to design transparent solar panels.
Mircea Cotlet, leader of the study and a physical chemist at Brookhaven's Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN), and Hsing-Lin Wang, co-author of the study and a researcher in the Chemistry Division at Los Alamos, have fabricated these new thin, transparent films in an effort to improve the use of solar panels.
These new transparent films are semiconducting polymers "spiked" with fullerenes, which are round,
that consist of 60 carbon atoms. Researchers created a a flow of water droplets across a layer of polymer-fullerene solution. When the water evaporated, the materials then self-assembled into micron-sized hexagonal-shaped cells. The film ends up looking like a honeycomb, and researchers were able to develop reproducible films that spanned several square millimeters of area.
"Though such honeycomb-patterned thin films have previously been made using conventional polymers like polystyrene, this is the first report of such a material that blends
and fullerenes to absorb light and efficiently generate charge and charge separation," said Cotlet.
The films are transparent because the edges of the hexagons contain polymer chains that are packed together tightly while the center of these hexagons have thin and loosely packed polymer chains. The closely packed edges are capable of absorbing light and generating electricity.
"Potentially, with future refinement of this technology, windows in a home or office could generate solar power," said Wang.
Researchers hope to use these transparent films to create brand-new types of optical displays,
energy-generating solar panels
for windows and other large-scale applications.
"Imagine a house made with windows made of this kind of material, which, combined with a solar roof, would cut its electricity costs significantly," said Cotlet. "This is pretty exciting."
was published in
Chemistry of Materials
on November 1.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Another big meh
11/8/2010 5:41:51 AM
The sad thing is that if environuts had their head screwed on right, we'd all be on the same page here. Nuclear is the solution to GHG, air pollution, fuel supply, long term cost reduction, technology leadership, etc.
"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997
Empire State Building Receives Energy Efficient Makeover
October 18, 2010, 1:12 PM
Silicon Bonds Observed At Atomic Level
October 8, 2010, 10:25 AM
Semiconductor Nanowires Used to Develop Artificial Skin
September 13, 2010, 1:01 PM
Crowdfunded Sex Toy Lets You Control the Action From Your Wii Nunchuk
January 15, 2015, 3:42 PM
Elon Musk Plays Warcraft; But Still Finds Time to Sleep, Build a Mars Colony Ship
January 6, 2015, 9:54 PM
SpaceX Scrubs Falcon 9 Launch to ISS, Barge Landing Test, Friday Redo Targeted
January 6, 2015, 4:02 PM
Quick Note; Wreckage of Malaysian-Owned Passenger Jet Found
December 30, 2014, 12:42 PM
Quick Note: Drone Loses Fight to the Death With Kangaroo
December 23, 2014, 3:28 PM
Campbell's Monkeys Found to Use Different Dialects to Describe Local Threats
December 22, 2014, 3:52 PM
Most Popular Articles
Microsoft Shows Off Latest Windows 10 Build, Preps it for Next Week Release
January 21, 2015, 2:57 PM
Under the Hood: How DirectX 11.3 and 12 Will Supercharge Windows 10 Gaming
January 23, 2015, 12:34 PM
Police are Using New Handheld Radar Sensors to Peer Into Houses w/out Warrant
January 20, 2015, 1:35 PM
BlackBerry CEO Claims Devs are Violating Net Neutrality by Not Supporting BB10
January 22, 2015, 4:37 PM
Report: Samsung Drops Snapdragon 810 From Galaxy S6, Will Use Its Own Chips
January 21, 2015, 1:47 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information