Sphelar – Spherical Solar Cell

Sphelar – Spherical Solar Cell
The Japanese corporation Kyosemi developed a flexible solar panel with close to 20% efficiency (higher than most commercial photovoltaic cells today). The new flexible cells will enable many applications which are currently impossible due to the rigid nature of existing photovoltaic technology.

There are several ways to increase the efficiency and hence the power production of solar panels. One way is to use small motors together with directional lenses to track and focus the Sun’s light thought the day. Kyosemi’s Sphelar uses advanced photovoltaic cells which can be made to create almost any shape. By creating a spherical shape and combining it with a mirror, energy from the Sun could be concentrated on different sides of the sphere – thus maximizing the amount of energy received without relying on medicinal parts. 

The Sphelar has several possible applications according to Kyosemi. Beside flexible solar panels for rooftops the new solar cells can be used for various portable electronic devices. Future applications range from car solar cells to clothing and even integration within concrete for contraction purposes. 

More information and images of the Sphelar solar cell technology can be found on Kyosemi’s website.
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About the author

Iddo Genuth

Iddo has a B.A. in Philosophy and Cognitive Science and an M.A. in Philosophy of Science from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is currently writing his Ph.D. thesis on the relationship between the scientific community and industry. Iddo was awarded the 2006 Bar Hillel philosophy of science prize for his work on the relationship between science and technology. He is a member of the board of the lifeboat foundation and was the editor of several high-profile science and technology websites since 1999.

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