Self-Cooling Solar Cells That Lasts Longer and Performs Better
Solar cells are among the most promising clean-energy technology in the market today, however, it still suffers from energy-conversion losses mostly due to overheating issues. Scientists from the Stanford University in California may have overcome this hurdle by adding a specially patterned layer of silica glass to the surface of ordinary cells which causes the solar cells to cool themselves by shepherding away unwanted thermal radiation. Led by Engineering Professor Shanhui Fan, the researchers were able to redirect unwanted heat- in the form of infrared radiation- from the surface of the cells, through the atmosphere and back into space.
Germany is World’s Most Energy-Efficient Nation
According to the 2014 tally released by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), of the sixteen nations that were studied for energy-efficiency, Germany emerged on top. Six of the top ten were from Europe and two were from Asia. Canada was the only North American nation to reach the top ten, placing 9th. The report’s evaluation of the U.S. was harsh, commenting that the country showed limited progress in terms of efficiency and continues to waste money and energy resources in comparison to other industrialized nations.
Solar Manufacturer Sunriva to Build A Second Facility in Michigan
Sunriva, a U.S.-based solar cell manufacturer, announced that it will open a second manufacturing facility in Michigan. Sunriva chose Michigan because of its knowledgeable workforce as well as its central location, which it is easy for the company to ship east or west. The company said that construction at the 200-MW facility begin in Q4 this year, and is expected to provide 350 job opportunities once fully operational. It will produce Sunriva’s high-efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells and modules.
U.K. Retains Goal to Cut Carbon Emissions in Half Through 2025
The U.K. will keep its target to cut greenhouse gas emissions by half through 2025, says Energy Secretary Ed Davey, thwarting the Treasury’s effort to weaken the target. Davey said that revising the carbon budget would be premature. The announcement removes uncertainty around the U.K.’s push to reduce emissions brought about by the battle between energy ministers and Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne over the carbon budget. The target was announced in 2011 with a stipulation that it be reviewed in 2014 to ensure that it will not damage economic competitiveness.