Solar Panel

Scientists at Ohio State University invented a solar panel that stores energy without the need of an external battery.

Researchers at the Ohio State University have invented a solar battery — a combination solar cell and battery — which recharges itself using air and light.

The design required a solar panel which captured light, but admitted air to the battery.

Above image: Scanning electron microscope images show the solution: nanometer-sized rods of titanium dioxide (larger image) which cover the surface of a piece of titanium gauze (inset). The holes in the gauze are approximately 200 micrometers across, allowing air to enter the battery while the rods gather light.  Credit Yiying Wu, The Ohio State University.

Key to the innovation is a mesh solar panel, which allows air to enter the battery, and a special process for transferring electrons between the solar panel and the battery electrode. Inside the device, light and oxygen enable different parts of the chemical reactions that charge the battery.

Yiying Wu, professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Ohio State, says:

“The state of the art is to use a solar panel to capture the light, and then use a cheap battery to store the energy. We’ve integrated both functions into one device. Any time you can do that, you reduce cost.”

The university will license the solar battery to industry.

He and his students believe that their device brings down costs by 25 percent.

via io9

source Ohio State University