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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Potential good news in the solar industry

The development of Black Silicon could increase PV efficiency by between 100 and 500%, perhaps even reaching the theoretical maximum efficiency of 30-40% conversion of light to energy.

Developed in secret at Harvard the technology creates a cone like texture on the surface of the silicon by zapping the surface with an intense short spectrum laser in the presence of sulfur hexafluoride gas. This textured structure allows absorption of light from all angles, as well as the infrared spectrum which greatly increases efficiency for a minimal cost increase to manufacturing. The rights to the technology belong to a new start up company SiOnyx.

Hopefully this can be commercialized in a timely and cost effective manner, something many other breakthroughs have failed at.Recommend this Post


nitroglycol said...

This shows a lot of promise. I have one caveat though, and that's the use of sulphur hexafluoride in manufacture. It's one of the worst greenhouse gases known (22,000 times as bad as carbpm dioxide). Hopefully, though, the amount used won't be that great.

Anonymous said...

I would hope its use would be in an enclosed system, so whatever gas is not fused to the surface is recovered for future use. It should be possible with little escape