What if there’s a solar cell that doesn’t need bright sunlight to operate?  The new research in Israel has come up with a new solar cell that uses only 20% of the silicon in a standard cell but producing the same amount of electricity.

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As effective solar cell doesn’t need direct sunlight to operate. Ideally, it could continue producing power long after the sun dissapear, albeit, more effective and efficient energy usage. Meanwhile, traditional silicon cells will immediately stop under cloudy or partial shade conditions.

The GreenSun energy colored cells will diffuse any light that falls on its surface and sends it off to photovoltaic collector strips on each of its sides.

As you can see in this video, no matter where the light source comes from, the colored glass disperses it to the edge where photovoltaic collectors wait to convert it into electricity.

In a nutshell, traditional solar collectors are made of thin strips of silicon covered by transparent plates. As the sun hits the plate, electrons are knocked out of the silicon atom producing current. A team of researchers led by internationally-renowned solar guru Prof Renata Reisfeld have taken a glass plate, given it light diffusing properties and attached strips of silicon to its edges.

According to the researchers, a mixture of different flourescent dyes concentrates visible and UV light (but not heat) onto the surface of the plate. Rather than simply passing through the plate, the light is persuaded to flow to the sides by metal nanoparticles, where thin strips of photovoltaic silicon wait to surrender their electrons. The interaction of the dyes and the nanoparticles helps ensure that just the right amount of energy hits the silicon to knock out the electrons, leading to improved cell efficiency.

And the researchers hope, there will be a decrease on manufacturing cost by a fifth in the near future, as less silicon means lower cost. For your information, the current cost of 200 watt panel is costing USD189.-.

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