BEACON TRANSCRIPT – On the subject of audacious research projects, we bring you another tale, this time coming straight from MIT. A team of physicists from the prestigious research institute managed to devise a solar cell so thin and light that it could fit on top of a soap bubble without popping it. MIT devised a bubble weight solar cell that can fit on virtually any device.
Yesterday we wrote about the first functional biological computer, a computational device that could outperform even the most powerful supercomputer on the planet. And now, we are eager to present another leap in technology, the bubble weight solar cell.
The device is so revolutionary, that it could spark a new era of technological marvels running only on solar energy. Apart from its small size and light weight, the cell’s storage capacity has been upgraded. Basically, the new generation of solar cells will be able to store more solar power than its predecessors.
How was this feat achieved? Through the use of organic materials, of course. According to Professor Vladimir Bulovic, the lead researcher of this project, the lightweight power cells was created under vacuum condition in order to minimize the component’s exposure to dust or other airborne impurities.
Furthermore, the team had to use special materials in order to ensure that the cell is both light and flexible. According to Bulovic, the team used a polymer called parylene, which basically acts as a substrate for the new solar cell. The polymer also ensures that the solar cells are protected from dust and other impurities found in the Earth’s atmosphere or in space.
As for the light-absorbing layer, the scientists in charge of the project used another organic material called DBP or dibutyl phthalate. DBP is a very common plasticizer, and it is also used to produce printing ink or adhesives.
But the experiment takes another turn when the scientists explain how the actual solar cell was created. As we know, in order to forge common solar cells, one would need extreme temperatures and hazardous compounds.
According to the team, this innovative solar cell was created at room temperature and under vacuum conditions. Moreover, the scientists did not use any solvents in order to create this solar cells.
So, we have a new type of solar cell, but now what? Well, according to the team, the new generation of power storage devices will have numerous applications. For example, phone makers will be able to outfit the new generation of smartphone with the new solar cells in order to complement the phone’s internal battery.
That way, we can rely on solar power during the day, and reap the benefits at night.
MIT devised a bubble weight solar cell that will be able to power up a new generation of electronic devices.