Solar energy is now regarded as the energy source of the future. The application of solar energy is expected to replace the overuse of fossil fuels and other non-renewable energy sources. However, solar energy generation was very costly during its initial stages. However, the technology has mainly changed, and solar energy generation has become affordable and flexible.
Ranging from bio-solar cells, floating solar farms, and energy trees, solar technology is fast changing. Including its ability to transform power directly from space, the future of renewable energy based on solar seems very promising and exciting. In this article, we will discuss some of the quickly evolving solar technologies that are supposed to shape the future of solar power generation.
Bio-Solar Cells – Paul Favret
After many years of experimentations and trial and error, the research has finally successfully connected nine bio solar or biological solar cells to create bio-solar panels. The advantage of this panel is that it can produce electricity continuously and generate optimum wattage out of the existing smaller bio-solar cells.
Paul Favret also points out that there have been many developments over the last few years in building better performance bio-solar cells. The scientists tried many combinations by changing the anodes and cathodes using different materials. They also created miniatures of the single-chambered and microfluidic-based devices to hold the bacteria, unlike the traditional, dual-chamber cells.
Photo Bio Electrochemical Cells
Some latest research in Hebrew University and the University of Bochum reported developments in photo-bio electrochemical cells, which puts forth better ways of converting solar energy into electricity. As we know, photosynthesis is the natural process through which plants and many other organisms make their food by using carbon dioxide and water in the presence of sunlight.
This natural bio electrochemical systems leverage the biological capacities of the plants, enzymes, and microbes for catalyzing electrochemical reactions. Now, in the new studies related to photo bio electrochemical cells, the researchers claim that integrating the photosystems with the electrodes for sunlight to electrical energy can be made possible but uniting the photosystems with the enzymes for yielding the result remains a challenge.
Reshaping The Solar Spectrum To Convert Light To Electricity
When installing solar panels, the labor and land costs become a considerable expense. So, the upfront cost of installing the solar system becomes big even though we can harness the power for free. These solar cells made of cadmium telluride or silicon account for about 20% of the cost.
So, solar energy can be harvested at a much cheaper rate if each solar cell can generate more power, thereby reducing the area of land to be utilized for solar installation. The scientists at the University of California claim that they have developed a solution for this. They published a paper showing that combining organic molecules with inorganic semiconductor nanocrystals can upconvert the photos in near-infrared regions of the solar spectrum.
Paul Favret points out that all these researchers are in the early stages of development but may surely yield some promising results, which will reduce the cost, time, and space needed for solar power generation.