Eco Tech: New technology makes Grätzel cells efficient
Eco Factor: Researchers achieve highest ever efficiency rating for dye-sensitized solar cells.
Grätzel cells, or dye-sensitized solar cells as they are popularly known, faced a major drawback till now – the performance of these cells dropped after a short exposure to sunlight, making them inefficient for use in domestic applications. Some Chinese and Swiss researchers now think that their unique technology can make these good looking solar cells more efficient.
The team of researchers including Michael Grätzel, the inventor of dye-sensitized solar cells, used solar cells made with a ruthenium-based dye to increase the efficiency of Grätzel cells to a respectable 10%. These cells also get immune to the sun by retaining 90% of their initial output after 1,000 hours in the sun. While traditional silicon-based solar cells have reached 12% efficiency, still they are much more expensive than these Grätzel cells.
The Dark Side:
A 10% efficiency rating is not good enough for any kind of technology, but since it’s a new discovery we expect it to increase a little once more work has been done on these cells. For now we think that domestic consumers will still be ready to pay more for an additional 2% of green electricity.