Soon, t-shirts to power your cell phone as you jog
Washington: The day could be near when you would be able to recharge your phone or music player while jogging, according to a new study.
A team from University of Southern California has produced flexible transparent carbon atom films that the researchers say have great potential for a new breed of solar cells.
"Organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells have been proposed as a means to achieve low cost energy due to their ease of manufacture, light weight, and compatibility with flexible substrates," said Chongwu Zhou, a professor of electrical engineering in the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.
An OPV photo-electronic device has a transparent conductive electrode through which light can couple with active materials to create electricity.
The team has created ultra thin sheets of graphene OPV, a highly conductive and highly transparent form of carbon made up of atoms-thick sheets of carbon atoms.
"For every 1000 watts of sunlight that hits a one square meter area of the standard silicon solar cell, 14 watts of electricity will be generated," said Lewis Gomez De Arco, a doctoral student and a member of the team.
He thinks that it may eventually be possible to run printing presses laying extensive areas covered with inexpensive solar cells, much like newspaper presses print newspapers, or could even be hung as curtains in homes.
The study was recently published in the journal ACS Nano.