Sunday, April 03, 2016

Researchers Develop All-Weather Solar Cell that Generates Power from Rain As Well As from Sun

The bi-triggered flexible solar cell for recording photovoltaic performance under a) front or b) rear irradiation and measuring current and voltage signals by dropping raindrops (including An+ and Bm- ions) onto rGO film. c), d) The operational principle of the flexible solar cell under sunlight. The rGO film is deposited on the PET side and solar cell is assembled on the ITO side. The two electrodes for measuring current and voltage signals in the presence of raindrops are coated with silver paint and subsequently protected with ethylene vinyl acetate copolymer. The droplets are injected by a medical syringe by controlling injection velocity. (Credit: Wiley-VCH, Tang et al_) Click to enlarge.
While many technical advances have made solar cells more efficient and affordable, a disadvantage remains in the fact that solar cells produce no power when it’s raining.  Now, however, researchers from the Ocean University of China (Qingdao) and Yunnan Normal University (Kunming, China) have developed an all-weather solar cell that is triggered by both sunlight and raindrops by combining an electron-enriched graphene electrode with a dye-sensitized solar cell.

The new solar cell can be excited by incident light on sunny days and raindrops on rainy days, yielding an optimal solar-to-electric conversion efficiency of 6.53% under AM 1.5 irradiation and current over microamps as well as a voltage of hundreds of microvolts by simulated raindrops. Their work is published as a “Very Important Paper” in the journal Angewandte Chemie.

Read more at Researchers Develop All-Weather Solar Cell that Generates Power from Rain As Well As From Sun

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