Brilliant ideas usually don’t need years of hard labor, or at least so it happens most of the time. For example, by implementing a switching trick to a DC to AC current converter used in solar panels, Heribert Schmidt, an electrical engineer (with a doctorate), from the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems has managed to halve inverter losses, bringing the efficiency to 98 percent.
They used Fresnel lenses situated 10 cm apart from stacked layers of solar cells. The metamorphic triple-junction solar cells consist of gallium indium phosphide, gallium indium arsenide and germanium semiconductors. The efficiency of these cells is dazzling: 41.1 percent – higher than ever before. The two scientists even for the 2010 Joseph von Fraunhofer Prize.
EarthSure, an innovator in alternative energy sources and renewable energy company is planning to develop a zero-emission electric vehicle powered by solar and wind energy. Called AirRay, the new car will be equipped with four wind turbines and a solar roof. All of these to generate necessary electricity to keep the batteries charged up.
Yet another efficiency record has been established for mass-producible solar cells: 23.4%. The Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE) from Germany succeeded to manufacture a single-crystal silicon solar cell of a thin p-type semiconductor layer residing on an n-type semiconductor substrate. The solar cell’s area is 2x2cm.
Solar cell system which concentrate solar light through lenses seem to be the most efficient and advantageous. The concentrator enables the system to work with cheaper lens system instead of expensive semi-conductor materials, making it as well more efficient.