One of the outstanding of the latest innovations from a joint work of a team of researchers from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of California Santa Barbra (UCSB) is transparent solar panels. Those panels still allow office occupants and home residents to see thru windows. The newly invented solar cell has a 70% transparent when viewed by human eye. The transparent solar cells are called Polymer Solar Cell (PSC) which can absorb sunlight and generate electricity which can be used for everyday purposes. The study from the two UC school systems is being published by the journal ACS Nano.
Polymer solar cells (PSC) generate electricity by absorbing energy from sun, especially the infrared light which is invisible to human eye. PSC does not absorb the visible light. This breakthrough research was led by Yang Yang and several doctoral students from the engineering department. Professor Yang is director of research institutions "Nano Renewable Energy Center" located at the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI). The team of researchers was able convert the infrared light into electricity by using a new type of absorbing device which is made of plastic photoactive materials.
There are many advantages of the new invention of transparent solar panels. First, PSC materials can be produced in large volumes with low production costs. Second, the transparent solar cell can be used to replace monitor screen and cover of portable electronic devices such as mobile phones, tablet, and laptop, and also for other products, including automobiles. Third, office buildings and houses can produced their own electricity to power their daily uses.
(Image: ACS Nano)