Polymer Solar Cells

Polymer Solar Cells


[music] [narrator] The sun provides a clean renewable source of energy. But electricity is expensive to produce using solar cells compared to nuclear energy or power from fossil fuels. Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln focuses on a solution. [Huang] The goal of this project is to make a more efficient and cheaper solar cells. UNL engineer Jinsong Huang earned a National Science Foundation Career Award to advance his research into solar energy devices. Huang wants to replace the silicon material used in today’s solar cells with polymers or plastics. [narrator] Huang and his colleagues have designed a new structure that includes a thin layer of ferro electric polymer, a material often used in insulation. Combined with organic polymers and electrodes, the device would generate more electricity at a lower cost. When this lab-sized device is perfected, it could be produced on a large scale. [narrator] If Huang can improve the efficiency of the polymer solar cell, the new device could replace the large solar panes atop buildings. And because polymers are flexible, future solar cells could also be pasted on a window or incorporated in fabric to provide a charge for your laptop or warmth on a camping trip. [narrator] The ability to cheaply harness the suns power could save consumers money and protect the environment. [music]

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