Renewable energy is inevitable. It will be relied on sooner or later especially at the current rate of non-renewable energy usage. However, Stanford researchers have come up with a low cost solar panel solution for all your personal needs.
Conventional solar panels comprise of Silicon and glass to maintain the structure. This, however, introduces the costly production as well as complication in the actual production (Mashable).
Researchers at Stanford University have created a flexible, yet reusable solar panel that can be mounted on practically any surface. The Thin-Film Solar Cells (TFSCs) can be applied to paper, plastic, and glass easily and painlessly. In addition, it comes right off with just some luke warm water.
According to Mashable, although TFSCs were produced in the past to be affixed to paper, textiles, and rubber, they were easily deteriorated from simple wear and tear usage. The new "peel-and-stick" solar cells allow for the use with portable power supplies, personal electronics, and even aerospace systems.
Lee and fellow researchers from Stanford state:
"Since the peel-and-stick process does not require any fabrication on the final target substrate, it circumvents all the fabrication challenges associated with these non-conventional substrates discussed above."(Mashable)
The scientific report by Nature details the peel and stick fabrication of thin film solar cells in results findings. Some basic uses were shown in pictures through the scientific report. For example, the thin film solar cells can be applied to the back of a typical cell phone.
Although it does not outline in detail the necessary steps to actually generate power, the concept can be applied to many everyday aspects of life. This technology lifts the limits associated with conventional solar cells. It is now possible to use this technology with curved, angled, and other non-flat surfaces.