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There's a new world record for solar cell efficiency

Engadget Engadget 18/05/2016 Devindra Hardawar
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In a major leap for photovoltaics, scientists at the University of New South Wales in Australia announced that they've developed a solar cell array that's 34.5 percent efficient at converting unfocused sunlight into electricity. That's a 44 percent improvement for the last record holder, which only reached 24 percent efficiency with a larger solar array. The key here is that the scientists were testing normal sunlight without any complex concentrators. The same UNWS team, led by Dr. Mark Keevers and Professor Martin Green, also broke the record for concentrated solar power in 2014, reaching over 40 percent efficiency.

"What's remarkable is that this level of efficiency had not been expected for many years," Green said. "A recent study by Germany's Agora Energiewende think tank set an aggressive target of 35% efficiency by 2050 for a module that uses unconcentrated sunlight, such as the standard ones on family homes.

University of New South Wales

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