Thin-Film Solar Breaks Efficiency Record
When I got started in this subject a few years ago, the efficiency of thin film solar (i.e., the percentage of sun’s radiant power that is converted into electricity) was measured in single digits. Here, we just achieved 16.1%, a huge increase from the former record holder at 14.7%.
I certainly don’t track every element of technological progress that the clean energy industry makes, but I occasionally take note, as it serves as a reminder of the big picture. The sun bestows more energy on the Earth in 90 minutes than all seven billion of us are consuming in a full year. All we need is a cost-effective solution that captures that tiny fraction, and the game will be over. No more environmental damage from burning fossil fuels. No more dangers of nuclear accidents and issues with waste disposal.
Today’s quantum leap in efficiency is just another reminder of how truly close we are. The quality is rising, and the costs are falling. Sounds good to me.
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