Yesterday, via Twitter, I intercepted this super interesting history. WHEN it one day becomes a reality, it will for sure be a true game changer for Africa… actually for everybody!!
Basically, researchers from the leading University known for their dedication to constantly provide the world with new and cool stuff; MIT, have realized a break through in making solar cells very cheap – indeed very very cheap!
Instead of producing solar panels the traditional way where you coat glas with a conductive material (which should not be the world’s most healthy job), you now PRINT the solar cells!!
And that’s not all (sorry for sounding a little like a TV-Shop salesman, but I am kind of ‘tripping’ here!!); the solar cells also have the upsides of:
- The cells can be printed on regular plastic, cloth, and paper
- It weighs close to nothing
- The cells are flexible
- They are even durable
YES, I did read the part in the article where they state that they have only reached an efficiency of 1%, but without proclaiming being a specialist within this space, this IS a huge step! Indisputable, the first step is the most important step to take in new technology achievements – just think back how little ‘fuel’ the battery of your first cell phone could hold compared to just some years after that.
Next good thing is, when a new technology of this importance is introduced, it often follows a pattern where only a few in the world can afford the technology for some time and then gradually it becomes more and more attainable for you and I, but this achievement seems to break that pattern.
I love the outro of the FastCompany article (where they actually introduce the developing world); “Just imagine: a truck filled with millions of pieces of solar cell-covered loose leaf paper.”