[LINK] solar cells now 23.2%

stephen at melbpc.org.au stephen at melbpc.org.au
Wed Jun 4 04:58:37 AEST 2008

Sustainable Futures
Jun 2, 2008

Solar cells reach new efficiency

Researchers from the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands 
and Fraunhofer Institute in Germany have improved the efficiency of 
crystalline-silicon solar cells to 23.2%, from 21.9%. The development 
should help make solar electricity cheaper.

The researchers say that, while an improvement of more than 1% in absolute 
terms may at first glance appear modest, it can enable solar cell 
manufacturers to greatly increase the performance of their products. 
That’s because higher efficiency is an effective way of reducing the cost 
price of solar energy.

The team achieved the result by applying a 30 nm layer of aluminium oxide 
to the front of a crystalline-silicon solar cell. The negative charges 
present in the aluminium-oxide layer helped eliminate energy losses at the 
surface, resulting in a 6% improvement of efficiency in relative terms. 
What’s more, it is likely to be relatively inexpensive to apply the 
aluminium-oxide layer.

The Plasma and Materials Processing group at the Eindhoven University of 
Technology says that a number of major solar-cell manufacturers have 
already shown interest in the processes for laying down ultra-thin 
aluminium oxide layers it has developed.

Ps: thanks for the link, Richard. I guess we need to notice two kinds of 
open source design. Existing design, with no open source community group
input to build it, suddenly made free by the owner/designer. And, full-on
and large scale open source community design, grown by recognized experts
online, and with many hands on deck. We need traditionsl OS house designs
bartered over and belted into shape by a dedicated expert online community
The open source group-process is vital to the quality of world OS products 

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