The solar cells, about the size of a 12-point font letter ‘o,’ are being tested to eventually power microscopic machines, such as those used to test chemical leaks in the air.
The researchers at the University of South Florida say these are some of the smallest solar cells ever, with twenty aligning to form one panel at just one inch. Typical single cells are around two inches across on their own, and then form the large silicon panels we see on rooftops.[social_buttons]
Lead researcher Xiaomei Jiang said the array will be optimized for higher voltage by the end of the year.
“I think these materials have a lot more potential than traditional silicon,” said Jiang regarding the use of organic polymers rather than traditional silicon. “They could be sprayed on any surface that is exposed to sunlight—a uniform, a car, a house.”
The research was published today under as the “Fabrication of organic solar array for applications in microelectromechanical systems,” in the inaugural issue of The Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy.
Alex is primarily concerned with animal welfare, wildlife conservation, and environmental justice. As a freelance writer in San Francisco, he leads a deliberately simplistic and thrifty lifestyle, yet still can’t help gawking at the newest green gadgets and zero-emission concept cars.