UCLA Creates New Solar Glass To Power Your Car, Home & Smart Phone
Researchers at UCLA have developed a two-layer, see-through solar film that can be placed on any number of glass surfaces to harvest energy from the sun.
The thin device uses two polymer solar cells to collect sunlight and then convert it into useable power, and can be used on windows in your home, the sunroof of your car, and even the display of your smartphone. The technology could one day be included in those products.
Researchers say that they saw close to twice the energy using two solar cells than they did with solar cells with just one cell in a panel. A single cell device is only capable of capturing 40 percent of the infrared light that passes through it. The new two-layer device is able to absorb up to 80 perfect of the infrared light that passes through it as well as some of the available visible light thanks in part to an infrared-sensitive polymer on the film.
UCLA has a working prototype of the solar film ready. No word one when we might see the technology deployed. Several other schools, including MIT, are also working on their own clear solar panels.