New way of making solar panels

Discussion in 'Energy' started by Chris, Feb 21, 2010.

  1. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    A new way of making solar cells promises a cheaper way to generate electricity from the sun and new ways to integrate solar power into other products.

    Solar cells, or photovoltaics, are widely made using wafers of silicon that are stiff and brittle. California Institute of Technology physics professor Harry Atwater is making photovoltaics differently.

    "Our technology uses 50-100 times less silicon," he said, "in the form of a sparse array of wires. And that sparse array of wires has exactly the same light absorption and electricity-collection properties as the conventional silicon wafer cell."

    The tiny silicon wires stick up from the base, or substrate, looking something like a microscopic hair brush. And because the key component of solar cells is an expensive, highly purified form of silicon, there's a real economic benefit to this design.

    "So what that means is, in terms of cost, is you can use 100 times less silicon. And that's potentially very significant."

    But the silicon is what converts light into electricity, so you might think using so much less silicon would reduce the electrical output, but Atwater says that's not the case.

    "The light comes in and is both directly absorbed by the wires, and some of the light bounces around in between the wires. And that bouncing around or multiple scattering in between the wires results in dramatically enhanced absorption," Atwater explained. "In fact, the absorption enhancement that we see is in the range of 20 to 50 times the single-pass absorbance."

    New Way of Making Solar Cells Promises Cheaper Power | Science and Technology | English
     
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  2. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    http://www.usmessageboard.com/scien...-flexible-solar-cells-electric-hot-pants.html

    Curious that science stuff generates so little interest. Especially since that is the real future of the country.

    You know what's funny? George Will and his speech about, "The cream rising to the top". He was talking about the separation between the haves and the have nots in this country. Yet Republicans have so little interest in really making "good" money.

    Republicans believe "skimming" money off insurance policies is "making money" or "moving it around" in the stock market. The real and true root of capitalism is making goods or creating services and selling them. Getting money for something concrete. Money skimming is legal, but it may not always be.
     
  3. code1211
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    code1211 Senior Member

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    Wow!
     
  4. code1211
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    code1211 Senior Member

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    Another example of how science is going to advance making the whole stop CO2 now charade just another footnote in history.

    By 2100, petroleum as fuel will be as pervasive as Whale Oil as fuel is today.
     
  5. RetiredGySgt
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    RetiredGySgt Platinum Member

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    Not if the Warmers have their way. You can not make large fields of solar panels because that would effect the environment where the panels are deployed. Democrats have already shot down one such farm. You can not put up large fields of turbines because they are eye sores, another Democrat shot that down.

    All that leaves is putting the panels on existing buildings.

    The cheaper they get the more likely they will become more standard on homes. The problem is not only the panels need to become cheaper and better, the batteries that store the electricity need to become smaller, less toxic and cheaper as well.

    By the way? All those people against space exploration? Wanna guess where Solar panels came into play and why a lot of the research into making them smaller and more effective came from?
     
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  6. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    I'm just so tired of liars. Don't you guys get tired of lying? Most of those on the Right swear they follow a God. What is it, the God of "Lies"?

    Most engineers and scientists ARE Democrats. They understand that these turbines are simply too dangerous to put in populated areas. As big as a 747, the technology is new and when it goes, it can send pieces larger than automobiles a half mile in every direction.

    And people bitch at me for being too partisan.

    Oh, and by the way, the money used to develop this new technology comes from "pork" earmarks that Republcians want to end.

    Oh, and by the way, one of the problems with solar panels is when they weather, they release resins and other material leached out by wind, sun and rain into the soil. Which is why the are being extensively weather tested so we know they aren't poisoning the surrounding area. If more Republicans would finish school, they would know all that.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nSB1SdVHqQ]YouTube - Windmill/Wind Turbine Explosion[/ame]
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2010
  7. RetiredGySgt
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    RetiredGySgt Platinum Member

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    Proof of ignorance and foolishness. Democrats have opposed every big farm for turbines and solar panels presented. No matter where they are to be built and it is the Republicans fault we do not have more wind Farms and solar farms?

    Remind us again how 40 Republicans blocked everything in a 100 member Senate. Remind us again how 170 Republicans blocked anything in a 435 member House.

    Talk about delusional.:cuckoo:
     
  8. Baruch Menachem
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    Baruch Menachem '

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    Just very very cool, very interesting. Thanks so much for posting about that.

    The problem with solar is the whole installation thing. The batteries and the conversion to household AC. The panels aren't such a much for cost, but anything that reduces the cost is a wonderful. Especially if it is flexible and easy to mount.

    This will also be a huge gain in rural areas.


    The next big thing will have to be in energy storage. But this is a real cool next step.


    As for the wind farms. They are incredibly noisy and ugly. And the power generated is not really enough to justify them. All the folks who love them live in big cities and don't have to look at them. Or listen to them. I can see why local politicians have huge NIMBY problems with them. Local politicians are supposed to listen to their constituents and save them from monstrosities like that. Of course, the poor power company gets it from both sides. They get mandated wind requirements, and the same politicians who insist they do wind farms won't let them build them anywhere near them.

    But this so cool, I wish I could pos rep Chris twice for it.
     
  9. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    Once these technologies are perfected, every roof in America should be made of solar panels instead of roofing tiles.

    It will happen one day.
     
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  10. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    I also believe that.
     

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