Latest in Science

Image credit:

Solar cells cool themselves to produce more power

131 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Solar power cells need to stay relatively cool for the sake of both efficiency and longevity, but active cooling (like ventilation) isn't practical; it's expensive, and may block the very rays the cells are supposed to collect. To tackle this problem, Stanford University researchers have created a new form of solar cell that cools itself. The technique embeds a pattern of very small cone and pyramid shapes into the collector's silica surface, bouncing hot infrared wavelengths away while letting in the visible light that generates the most energy.

The result is a heavily optimized panel that not only scoops up more power, but avoids cooking itself to death -- it's very nearly ideal, according to scientists. The Stanford team has a long way to go (it still has to try the self-cooling tech outdoors), but it foresees commercial products. Don't be surprised if you can eventually install a refined solar array at home that not only powers more of your gadgets, but doesn't need to be replaced after suffering through a few too many scorching summers.

[Top image credit: AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi]

Self-cooling solar cell up close

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
131 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Senator Wyden pushes his ‘Mind Your Own Business’ privacy act forward

Senator Wyden pushes his ‘Mind Your Own Business’ privacy act forward

View
Fractal Bits drum synth app uses algorithms to produce billions of sounds

Fractal Bits drum synth app uses algorithms to produce billions of sounds

View
'Anthem' gives its Cataclysm in-game event a second try

'Anthem' gives its Cataclysm in-game event a second try

View
Crowdfunding is better than Netflix for YouTube's creep queen

Crowdfunding is better than Netflix for YouTube's creep queen

View
Amazon is hosting a two-day music festival in Las Vegas

Amazon is hosting a two-day music festival in Las Vegas

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr