New Solar Panel Materials Studied

August 25th, 2013 BY VeganVerve | 12 Comments

A study performed at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory was to determine new materials for solar panels. The current material used in solar panels, crystalline silicon, is expensive and not easily acquired.

The scientists involved in the study are Cyrus Wadia, who is the lead author, Paul Alivisatos who is the director of the lab, and Daniel Kammen. Kammen is a professor at UC Berkeley and is the director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory.

The scientists studied 23 alternative materials using computer models. Of the 23 materials, 12 were deemed to exist in great enough quantities to meet world annual energy requirements. Iron sulfide and copper sulfide were the two materials which were in great abundance and cost the least. These two materials, according to the scientists, should be able to replace the crystalline silicon.

The scientists hope that discovering and developing new materials for the panels would make panels more readily available to consumers. Not only would panels be more easily accessed, solar energy would begin to comprise a greater percentage of energy. Currently, solar power only amounts to .006 percent of all energy.

The scientists working on the study hope that their findings will spur other laboratories to work on alternative solar power construction and make solar power a more probable solution to energy needs.

  1. home solar energy

    Since we are experiencing economy crisis right now, we ought to find ways on how to lessen our daily expenses.
    We all prioritize expenses at home and it’s really amazing to have this solar energy for our homes.
    It is great to save money from our electricity bills.

  2. frank

    good news

  3. Joshua Mintz

    Yes -That has been one of the main goals for quite some time now- and its so great to see more and more people striving to make solar panels available to everyone -It reminds me of when the home computer was just a dream

  4. surya

    be more specific about materials

  5. Anil Pokhrel

    could we produce electricity by using human hair instead silicion from sunlight

  6. Sayantan Das

    I want to develope the efficiency of solar panels. But don’t know how it possible wiht low cost.I donn’t understand from where I can start. Please halp me with your kind tips.

  7. keka

    i want to generate solar power but i don’t know how to do it.pls can yuo give me the step by step instructions on how to do it and the materials needed.thanks.

    • Responses to keka
      Kerr says:
      January 2

      You need to know about your current electrical use: If you are in Europe you have 220 volt 50 hertz
      If you are in the US of A you have 110 volt at 60 hertz.
      This info is needed if you want to be tied to the grid provided by the power co.

      Then there is off grid:
      This than asks the question of how much power do you want?
      If you have less than 2000 square feet of house or space than 15 kilo-watts is needed depending of square feet you have.
      What I do is look at your service pannel.
      It should have 15 ampers, 20 ampers, & a disconnect of possible 100 amps.
      Say one circuit that feeds some part of your outlets is 15 amps circuit breaker. If you want to power this circuit you will need to calculate the max needed. 15a x 110v = 1650 watts.
      SO~ just for this one circuit you will need a pannel that produces 2 kilowatts of 60 hertz 110v of power. Of course you do not have to burn all the power but that is what your circuit was designed to do DAY & NIGHT!
      This is why we go around and shut things OFF!
      SO? how many circuits do you have?
      How much power do you buy now?
      For my self I just want to reduce what I buy. To do this I opt for a Grid tie system.
      I am building Two pannels. One each for the two phase power coming into my home.
      I go to e-bay to buy the solar cells. Count on 48 cells each. that calculates to 48 x .55v = 26 volts DC peak volts to be sure.
      This is feed into a micro grid tie inverter which produces 110v 60hertz. The micro inverter is rated at about 200 watts each.
      one inverter is feed to phase one of the incoming power while the other inverter is feed into phase 2.
      You can string about 10 of these each which will produce about 2k watts of power. Some part of the day but not all day. Unless you have a tracking device to follow the sun to keep the cells pointed directly at the sun all the live long day.
      When you go to e-bay to buy the cells you should also pick up the links on how to solder the cells to gether.
      Also find so videos on You tube on a complete unit(pannel) built from scratch!
      I find them interesting but no one is doing my system of two phase 220v gride tie. Each phase is 110v & they are phase 180 degrees appart.
      (safety first: Respect the power in the circuit pannel. Never touch the bare wires with your bare hands, skin, or hair! IT WILL KILL YOU! Remimber the above calculation of each circuit is 2kilo watts possible or higher! That is why I did the math & you better respect the power pannel! This is also why you are required to have special outlets called ~ GFI!)
      To test what I say: Get a multi-meter, set it to measure AC. Test each of your 110v breakers to ground or the White wires. Measures 110 – 120v. BUT if you mesure between breaker output you will find that the circuits next to it will measure 220v as the pannel alternates circuits from one phase to the other or there will be no voltage measured as the cirucits will be on the same phase.
      Buy a clamp on multi-meter so that you can measure Current and Voltage of your circuits.
      Use these numbers to calculate what you are using in the form of WATTS per circuits and what your panels are producing.
      Don’t you think that it is worth $10,000 to have some one else do it? Let them risk their life & limb!
      If you want to proceed any way than e-mail me & I will continue my DIY online with you!

  8. kuntry

    hey guys,,,,, i want to absorb the heat energy and produce electrical energy from it . The temperature difference will be max of 50–60 degrees . can anyone help me with this………

  9. prradeep

    i want to see the materials to make solar panels

  10. Jessie

    hey, solar panels are good for the environment! buy some

  11. Jenelly Josol

    where I can buy a solar panel materials?, i want to make my own solar panel.

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