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Researchers develop transparent power-generating windows

Zoom  Zoom Issue Date:2021-07-16   Browse:1093

BEIJING - Researchers from China, Germany and Britain have developed transparent power-generating windows to convert sunlight into electricity, according to a research article published in the journal Advanced Energy Materials.

Transparent photovoltaics have shown great potential, but increased transparency comes at the expense of reduced power-conversion efficiency.

The researchers developed the window by overcoming this limitation by combining solar-thermal-electric conversion with the wavelength-selective absorption of the material used.

The wavelength-selective film facilitates up to 88 percent of visible-light transmittance and outstanding ultraviolet and infrared absorbance, thereby converting absorbed light into heat without sacrificing transparency, according to the researchers.

A prototype that couples the film with thermoelectric power generation modules produces an extraordinary output of four voltages within an area of 0.01 square meters exposed to sunshine.

This technology can operate under ambient temperatures with high reliability and has great application prospects in transparent on-site power generation, thus allowing it to provide thermal comfort for building occupants. It could also complement rooftop solar panels and side windows of trains or automobiles.

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