Thursday, August 02, 2007

Solar cost-prohibitive? Buckyballs to that

clipped from
Researchers develop "paint-on" solar cells

The quest to builder a better, cheaper solar cell continues on, as researchers at the New Jersey Institute of Technology have developed a new type of solar cell that can be printed or painted onto flexible plastic sheets. Unlike traditional silicon cells, the print-on cells are composed of carbon nanotubes and buckyballs, which results in substantially cheaper manufacturing costs and greater efficiency, since apparently carbon nanotubes are terrific conductors. The scientists seem pretty pumped about the potential for their tech, with lead researcher Somenath Mitra quite confidently proclaiming that we'll all soon be printing "
sheets of these solar cells with inexpensive home-based inkjet printers." Yeah, we're sure there won't be any shenanigans going on in that ink cartridge market.

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