Solar power is arguably the most promising form of alternative energy out there at the moment. The biggest problem that it faces, however, is that it isn’t exactly cheap to equip your home or car with battery packs and solar panels. The high costs of adopting solar power has dissuaded or prevented many people for making the switch.
The good news is that solar power, like most technologies, can only get better and easier to use as time goes by, and a group of researchers have taken a massive step in that direction. A team of scientists from the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom have developed a spray-on solar cell that could rival even the most efficient technologies on the market right now.
The secret is perovskite, a calcium titanium oxide mineral, which is as inexpensive as organic solar cells but absorbs light almost as well as silicon does. The spray-on technology has achieved 11% efficiency, the measurement of how much of the sunlight hitting the cell is actually converted into energy, which is an impressive number considering that it’s a budget technology.
To put that into perspective, affordable, silicon-based solar cells can usually achieve somewhere round 25% efficiency, whereas the best conventional perovskite cells can reach 19%. The technology isn’t quite ready for the market yet, but the researchers are confident that after pushing the 11% efficiency mark up a little bit, they will have successfully created an extremely low-cost way of making high-producing solar panels.
Read more about the story at ExtremeTech.