Energy-generating windows, glass facades, and even portable electronic device screens could replace traditional solar cells.
Called dye-sensitized solar cells (DSCs), these panels generate electricity once stimulated by sunlight or artificial light, behaving like chlorophyll in photosynthesis. The latest breakthrough was from a team of Swiss scientists who designed photosensitizer dye molecules that can harvest light from the whole visible light spectrum. The first commercial applications are in use with the installation of dye-sensitized solar windows in the SwissTech Convention Center.
So far, traditional solar cells outperform the new DSCs, but it is early days. DSCs offer promising prospects for applications as power supply and battery replacement for low-power electronic devices that use ambient light as their energy source. They are pretty simple, easy to produce and have low toxicity. DSCs are also flexible and affordable.
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