Applied Technotopia

We scan the digital environment to examine the leading trends in emerging technology today to know more about future.

We have added a few indices around the site. Though we look to the future, we need to keep an eye on the present as well:

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Posts tagged "solar power"

This map graphically places the effectiveness of solar power into perspective.


The red squares represent the area that would be enough for solar power plants to produce a quantity of electricity consumed by the world today, in Europe (EU-25) and Germany (De).
(Data provided by the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), 2005)

[source 1 2]

(via climate-changing)

A solar power breakthrough with great prospects.


World record solar cell with 44.7% efficiency, made up of four solar subcells based on III-V compound semiconductors for use in concentrator photovoltaics. Image: Fraunhofer ISE

World Record Solar Cell with 44.7% Efficiency

Solar power news! A coalition of scientific institutes from France and Germany have achieved a new world record for solar power efficiency. After three years of research, the record efficiency of 44.7% was achieved, meaning that “44.7% of the solar spectrum’s energy, from ultraviolet through to the infrared, is converted into electrical energy.” 447% is well on the way to the oft-cited goal for 50% efficiency.

Back in May 2013, the German-French team of Fraunhofer ISE, Soitec, CEA-Leti and the Helmholtz Center Berlin had already announced a solar cell with 43.6% efficiency. Building on this result, further intensive research work and optimization steps led to the present efficiency of 44.7%. 

These solar cells are used in concentrator photovoltaics (CPV), a technology which achieves more than twice the efficiency of conventional PV power plants in sun-rich locations. The terrestrial use of so-called III-V multi-junction solar cells, which originally came from space technology, has prevailed to realize highest efficiencies for the conversion of sunlight to electricity. In this multi-junction solar cell, several cells made out of different III-V semiconductor materials are stacked on top of each other. The single subcells absorb different wavelength ranges of the solar spectrum.

“We are incredibly proud of our team which has been working now for three years on this four-junction solar cell,” says Frank Dimroth, Department Head and Project Leader in charge of this development work at Fraunhofer ISE. “This four-junction solar cell contains our collected expertise in this area over many years. Besides improved materials and optimization of the structure, a new procedure called wafer bonding plays a central role. With this technology, we are able to connect two semiconductor crystals, which otherwise cannot be grown on top of each other with high crystal quality. In this way we can produce the optimal semiconductor combination to create the highest efficiency solar cells.” 

“This world record increasing our efficiency level by more than 1 point in less than 4 months demonstrates the extreme potential of our four-junction solar cell design which relies on Soitec bonding techniques and expertise,” says André-Jacques Auberton-Hervé, Soitec’s Chairman and CEO. “It confirms the acceleration of the roadmap towards higher efficiencies which represents a key contributor to competitiveness of our own CPV systems. We are very proud of this achievement, a demonstration of a very successful collaboration.”

“This new record value reinforces the credibility of the direct semiconductor bonding approaches that is developed in the frame of our collaboration with Soitec and Fraunhofer ISE. We are very proud of this new result, confirming the broad path that exists in solar technologies for advanced III-V semiconductor processing,” said Leti CEO Laurent Malier. Concentrator modules are produced by Soitec (started in 2005 under the name Concentrix Solar, a spin-off of Fraunhofer ISE). This particularly efficient technology is employed in solar power plants located in sun-rich regions with a high percentage of direct radiation. Presently Soitec has CPV installations in 18 different countries including Italy, France, South Africa and California.


Further reading:

(via scinerds)

An infographic look at the evolution of solar power.


Read a brief history of #solar power, and the path it followed to become cost-competitive with traditional electricity

For more solar energy news and helpful facts about going solar, visit the SolarReviews blog.

(via climate-changing)

A look at the world´s largest solar thermal plant in California.


As World’s Largest Solar Thermal Plant Opens, California Looks to End Solar Wars

After controversy over a threatened species delayed several large solar projects, state officials are trying to broker an agreement between conservation groups and solar companies on a path forward for renewable energy.”

Learn more in the latest radio story from KQED Science.

via: kqedscience

(via futurescope)

This graph dramatically illustrates the rapidly decreasing price of solar power.


Solar power’s massive price drop, in one graph.

(via utnereader)

A magnificent Birdseye view of this solar power array in Seville, Spain.


Hoe het veld met zonnepanelen van de Gemasolar Power Plant nabij Sevilla er van boven uit ziet. Heel vet!

(via cjwho:)

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A brilliant and innovative solar powered device charger!




Window Socket - Kyuho Song & Boa Oh

So this is an absolutley brilliant idea! Just attach the plug on to a window and it will harness solar energy. A small converter will convert it into electricity which can be freely used as a plug when you are in the car, on a plane or outside.

Love this design and I really think it has a great potential.

You look at stuff like this and you know it’s designed by a designer not an engineer. Because it’s almost always impractical. You can never generate enough energy to power anything with such a tiny solar panel.

Plus. 1000mAh. That’s not even enough to charge your iPhone.

The first computer ever made was bigger than a small house. Now you have one that not only fits in your pocket, but also does countless other things with even more efficiency. There are plenty of practical designs out there that could be improved upon and improved upon over and over, so who says these types of things can’t work?