Diffuse light solar panels
Researchers in Jerusalem are developing a new type of solar cell that can generate power from diffuse light. The cells form panels that transmit light to silicon solar receptors at their edges. GreenSun Energy of Tel Aviv say their panels have achieved a 12% efficiency rate, much lower than the world’s most efficient cells, but hope to eventually reach a 20% efficiency. The panels use 80% less silicon than traditional cells, making them more cost-efficient.
The panels would not need direct sunlight to generate power, which not only means they’ll be more useful in regions with less sunny days and in locations without optimal exposure, but also that there will be less efficiency loss due to heat. Once developed, the company hopes to sell the panels at less than a quarter of the price of conventional solar panels.