08 Aug '11, 8am

5 breakthroughs that will make solar power cheaper than coal

5 breakthroughs that will make solar power cheaper than coal

Prof. Gang Chen was been working on a revolutionary new way to make solar power -- micro solar thermal -- which could theoretically produce electricity at 8x the efficiency of the word's best solar panel. Solar thermal usually requires huge arrays of mirrors that heat up an element to run a steam turbine. Chen's system, which is about the size and shape of a typical solar PV panel, uses nanostructured thermoelectric generators that capture the heat differential created by the sun's light striking the top of the panel. Because it is a thermal process, the panels can heat up from ambiant light even on an overcast day, and these panels can be made from very inexpensive materials.

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/green-tech/research-innovations/blogs/...

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