By Paul Ploumis 29 Sep 2015 Last updated at 04:40:55 GMT
MONTREAL (Scrap Monster): Plastics are advancing itself into various application areas, revolutionizing the existing products. The latest buzz is that plastics are being used to manufacture solar cells. The plastic solar cells are all set to bring in huge revolution in the manner in which solar energy is collected and distributed.
Silicon forms the major component of the present day solar cells, due to the fact that its structure helps in creating photovoltaic effect. In other terms, sunlight causes movement of electrons through solar cell material, thereby producing electric current. Silicon facilitates speedy movement of electrons, but is highly unaffordable due to their cost.
As an alternative, recent research has proved that the molecules in certain forms of plastic could be manipulated to create ‘nanowires’ through which electrical charges could flow more efficiently. The findings of the research could revolutionize the present day solar technology. Plastics being thin, lightweight and flexible could lead to design of plastic solar cells that are compact. It could also help in creation of solar cells in various shapes including curved ones.
The key advantage of plastic solar cells is that it will provide a cheaper solution when compared with the existing range of products. The affordability of the new range of plastic solar cells could bring in renewable energy to more individuals, communities and businesses. Moreover, research is already underway to integrate plastic solar cells into our everyday life by installation of the cells in various mobile devices.