If you like science-fiction and technological advancements into the future, then this is for you. Imagine if the windows of tall glass buildings could harvest the energy of the sun through solar panels that would live inside those windows. In theory, they could provide power to the whole structure. That is what quantum dots technology is planning to help achieve.
Quantum Dots Will Revolutionize the Energy Industry
Energy is necessary for so many facets of our lives. It starts with our cell phone, which needs to be recharged with electricity, our home that needs heating (or cooling depending on the season), and our car which needs fuel to run. These are only some of the numerous things that require energy to function. But what if they could be self-sufficient, by regaining their energy through glass, thanks to the suns rays. These ideas are what researchers are currently working on, using quantum dots technology like here.
The first step is to create solar panels which would be transparent like regular glass. This advanced material is currently under development using quantum dots. They are microscopic particles which can utilise light to create energy from it. They are so small that it would take about 100,000 of them, placed side-by-side to cover one fingernail.
The reason why this material is perfect for the task is that they have high efficiency and size-tunable photoluminescence (PL, light emission), which covers a wide range of colours. Today, an energy such as electricity needs large grids which quantum dots could reduce massively. At a time where renewable energy has become critical to the continuation of humankind, by keeping a clean environment where it can prosper, solar panel glass panes using quantum dots technology could be one of the solutions available.
Making Great Progress
Researchers are making significant progress in the development of transparent solar cells. Their latest work has shown efficiency level of 8.1%, where the previous ones were hovering around 2 to 3%. That is an efficiency record which shows how fast they are moving along, and hopefully means the technology isn’t that far out.
Being able to incorporate solar cells into the windows of a building would be an exciting advancement in the field of energy, as each of them could harvest its energy. Since these cells can reach a high level of efficiency, while keeping high visible transparency through quantum dots, they will undoubtedly play their part in humanity’s future.