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The idea of solar panels not requiring sunlight may seem crazy, but it’s not entirely impossible. As the foundation of the revolution to bring cleaner energy to people, solar panels have become one of the best options out there. However, these energy conductors have a fatal defect. They need direct sunlight to create energy. What if we could remove that flaw, though? That’s the idea behind AuREUS, a new solar panel that doesn’t rely on direct sunlight to generate energy.
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These solar panels do not require sunlight to generate electricity
But how do you make solar panels that don’t rely on sunlight? Well, you don’t. At least, not completely. Instead, you make solar panels that can feed the Sun’s ultraviolet rays unobstructed by clouds.
Carvey Ehren Maigue is a student at Mapua University in the Philippines. To create the panels, Maigue used luminescent particles from fruit and vegetable stains. These are the same particles that absorb the Sun’s ultraviolet rays and make it visible light. By using particles like this, Maigue created a solar film capable of capturing ultraviolet rays. The film then converts the rays into visible light that is used to generate energy.
The idea is an ingenious one, and one that helps reduce more waste around the world. Additionally, since it does not rely on direct sunlight, it can continue to generate electricity even when it is cloudy outside. The current prototype is just a 3-by-2-foot panel installed in a window of Maigue’s apartment. It is capable of generating enough electricity to charge two phones per day, though. When enlarged, Maigue said he believes it could enable buildings to completely eliminate their own electricity.
Expansion of renewable energy
Part of what’s really exciting about solar panels that don’t require sunlight, though, is the scalability. The film -like panel that Maigue produced is flexible. It is made of resin and is possibly even applied to pieces of clothing. Very good idea, in fact, it won a Sustainability Award from the James Dyson Foundation in 2020.
Because it is so flexible, solar film leaves a lot of space for more innovators to climb up and find new applications. Even the basic design used by Maigue may prove useful, as it will only need to apply the film to your window to get electricity. This means less worrying about expensive solar panels that are on your roof or having to install them in some other way. We will also see it installed in vehicles, providing new ways of generating energy in electric vehicles.
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