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View Diary: Total Surface Area Required to Fuel the World With Solar (138 comments)

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  •  if you mean "paint on solar cells" (0+ / 0-)

    it's not even hype, it's sound bites for the media.

    A photovoltaic cell needs two electrodes to collect the electricity it generates, one of these is the transparent but conductive top electrode.

    So to paint a solar cell onto bare metal you need two layers as a minimum, and that's making some blue sky assumptions.  Paint it onto anything insulating and you need at least three layers. And it's more complex than that, because the top electrode isn't a great conductor, so you need truly metallic conductor 'fingers' to collect the power before the resistive losses eat into it too much.  A paint that could lay down not only two layers, but a grid-like set of collection conductors, would be truly a marvel.

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