New wavy solar cells could revolutionise efficiency

Renewable energy benefits the economy Posted on 13th May 2019 by Ged Ennis

As one of the world鈥檚 most widely-used renewable technologies, solar cell technology is evolving all the time. Most recently, researchers have come up with a new invention around solar power technology with the creation of what is being referred to as wavy solar cell, in reference to intentionally curvy cells that don鈥檛 conform to the usual design aesthetics of a solar panel nor weigh anything like as much either.

What鈥檚 in a wavy solar cell?

Researchers at the Power Roll in conjunction with the University of Sheffield have developed a new technique of using tiny grooves on either side of a cell with electrical contacts and then fitting semiconductors within the grooves themselves. The idea with this 3D design is that it reduces the complexity of a traditional flat solar panel by stripping out several of the usual steps along the way. This radically simplifies what鈥檚 traditionally needed with producing photovoltaic modules.

New materials and weight differences

The new type of wavy solar cell is unlike flat solar panels that are used currently. The ability to use different, lighter materials in the production of wavy solar cells gives more flexibility to manufacturers. The good news with this newer cell design is that it鈥檚 substantially lighter than current solar panel installations. This has a bearing both on the transportability of a pack of solar panels and where they can be fitted. With less weight, panels based on the wavy cell design will be easier to bring out to remote, off-grid locations or to ship them to local solar panel fitters too.

Different customisation

Once they go into mass production, the expectation is that these types of wavy cells will be less expensive to produce with no cost to their durability. The lesser weight with this new style is more advantageous to developing worlds in situations where panels must be imported because they鈥檙e not made locally.

In the push to make renewable energy better, cheaper and easier to set up, a solar panel comprised of lightweight wavy cells is certainly of interest to the scientific community. There鈥檚 greater flexibility on what materials are used, perhaps offering the potential for price competitiveness when eventually reaching mass production due to accelerating demand.

While new or wavy cells have pricked the attention of renewable energy enthusiasts, they鈥檙e still years away from mass production. In the meantime, the solar solutions we offer are still fantastic for saving you money on your energy bills, reducing your carbon footprint and improving your green credentials. We have decades of experience behind us, making us the perfect people to help you achieve a solar solution that鈥檚 precisely tailored to your business. You can find out more about commercial solar for business right here on our site, or alternatively give us a call on 01282 421 489

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