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Cheap solar panels could be printed at home

By Paperstone on July 24, 2007 in Ink Cartridges And Toners

In the near future, the world could see a huge increase in the amount of solar panels providing energy with the help of ink-jet printers if researchers at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) get their way.

In what could prove to be a novel solution to the increasing impacts of climate change, normal, everyday ink-jet printers could be used to produce solar panels, the research has discovered.

Lead researcher and author Somenath Mitra, who is also professor and acting chair of NJIT’s Department of Chemistry and Environmental Sciences, claimed that "the process is simple".

"Using this unique combination in an organic solar cell recipe can enhance the efficiency of future painted-on solar cells. Someday, I hope to see this process become an inexpensive energy alternative for households around the world," Professor Mitra stated.

Professor Mitra stated that he expects there to be a "great deal of interest" in the research as it could prove to be a system that can be rolled out anywhere where someone has an ink-jet printer.

According to Professor Mitra: "Someday homeowners will even be able to print sheets of these solar cells with inexpensive home-based ink-jet printers.Consumers can then slap the finished product on a wall, roof or billboard to create their own power stations."

After using an ink-jet printer, the solar panel could technically be used anywhere there is sunshine, including on the roof of a car, explained Professor Mitra.



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