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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

More efficient solar cells?

It appears that the University of Notre Dame has just recently came up with this invention. According to Rakes Agrawal, who is a chemical engineering professor (@ Notre Dame), whose team just received a $750,000 grant to get this technology up and running. CTSZ (Copper, Zinc, Tin, and Sulfide) it what this new material is referred to as.

So the team successfully synthesized the CTSZ into light-absorbing nano-crystals. It all looks sort of like a dark ink, which is then painted onto a piece of glass, and then studded with microelectronics.

But what surprised the them wasn't that it was less expensive to produce panels in this manner-- it was the fact that these cells were apparently 10-15% more efficient to the panels on the market today.

The team was tasked by the DOE (department of energy) to not only to come up with such cell, but also with plans for it to be mass produced. I say congrats to Purdue university for coming up with a cheaper more efficient solar cell.

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