Latest in Science

Image credit: Reuters/Chip East

Solar cell generates power from raindrops

Solar power's nemesis might become its friend.
125 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Reuters/Chip East

Rain is normally a solar energy cell's worst nightmare, but a team of Chinese scientists could make it a tremendous ally. They've developed a solar cell with an atom-thick graphene layer that harvests energy from raindrops, making it useful even on the gloomiest days. Water actually sticks to the graphene, creating a sort of natural capacitor -- the sharp difference in energy between the graphene's electrons and the water's ions produces electricity.

The catch is that the current technology isn't all that efficient. It only converts about 6.5 percent of the energy it gets, which pales in comparison to the 22 percent you see among the world's better solar panels. If the creators can improve the performance of this graphene-coated cell, though, they could have a dream solution on their hands -- you wouldn't have to live in a consistently sunny part of the world to reduce your dependency on conventional power.

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
125 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Google's new emulator makes Android Automotive development easier

Google's new emulator makes Android Automotive development easier

View
Watch the final 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' trailer

Watch the final 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' trailer

View
What's on TV this week: 'The Outer Worlds'

What's on TV this week: 'The Outer Worlds'

View
Adobe may reveal Illustrator for iPad in November

Adobe may reveal Illustrator for iPad in November

View
NVIDIA's EGX supercomputer tech can crunch 1.6 terabytes a second

NVIDIA's EGX supercomputer tech can crunch 1.6 terabytes a second

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr