Without any doubts, the sustainable use of natural resources has become an urgent matter all over the world. Realizing that one day the natural wealth may be simply depleted, people are trying to find a substitution for it to avoid the energy crises. One of such alternatives is applying solar energy, which is really an inexhaustible resource. And, as you may know, the gizmos to capture the sunlight and convert it into energy, are called Solar Cells. Erm, wait, what about affordability? Why are all current techniques so expensive? It seems, that Standford University has solved this problem...
Stanford University researchers claim to have created the first solar cell made entirely out of carbon. This technology breakthrough is to replace the sometimes rather expensive materials used in producing solar cells today.
“Carbon has the potential to deliver high performance at a low cost,” says the senior author of the research Zhenan Bao. “To the best of our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of a working solar cell that has all of the components made of carbon. This study builds on previous work done in our lab.”
Actually, the regular thin solar cell is composed of thee layers: a photoactive one to absorb the sunlight and two electrode layers, made out of conductive metals and indium tin oxide. All this surely demands heavy expenses. While the Stanford's solar cell would be budget-friendlier, as it consists of specially selected carbon types: the scientists have applied graphene for the electrodes and carbon nanotubes and "buckyballs" for the active layer. Sounds very convincing, doesn't it? Who knows, maybe this invention will actually become the one our world have been waiting for.