Monday, June 14, 2010

Gratzel Cells: Windows that Generate Power

"Windows that Work as Solar Cells"
David Teeghman, Tech News, Discovery News (June 13, 2010)

"The biggest problem with solar panels is that they're expensive. Solar power is actually the most expensive type of renewable energy. But a Swiss professor has just received the Millennium Technology Prize for developing low-cost solar cells that can be built into glass windows. So instead of installing solar panels on your roof; you'd just install them as windows, which you need anyway...."

"...Michael Gratzel spent two decades developing a revolutionary type of dye-sensitized solar cell called a Gratzel cell (guess where he got the name for it). The group that presented the award, the Technology Academy Finland, says this invention is a huge leap forward for solar technology...."

It's not just technically nifty. Apparently, Gratzel cells could be relatively inexpensive to manufacture.

The basic idea of using cheap materials to convert windows and roofs into power generators is many decades old - in 'hard' science fiction, anyway. Looks like someone's come up with a practical approach to making the things.

As they used to say, 'stay tuned.' I suspect we may be hearing more about the Gratzel cells.

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