OSU reports solar energy advance

Solar energy upgrades are likely to become increasingly affordable for homeowners in the coming years, judging from increasingly efficient and advanced products that are being researched around the world.

For example, Oregon State University recently announced that its researchers have developed a new technology that will help lower solar panel costs while reducing material waste.

According to the university, the new development involves continuous flow microreactors that are used to produce thin film absorbers in solar cells. The announcement noted that research has been performed in this area before, but that previous efforts required more time and potentially expensive materials.

"If we could produce roofing products that cost-effectively produced solar energy at the same time, that would be a game changer. Thin film solar cells are one way that might work. All solar applications are ultimately a function of efficiency, cost and environmental safety, and these products might offer all of that," said Chih-hung Chang, an OSU associate professor.

This and other types of solar energy research are helping the industry get closer to the longstanding goal of becoming fully cost-competitive with fossil fuels.

Author: Danny Vo

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Posted in: Solar Energy


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