World-wide energy consumption is expected to increase by 40% over the next 20 years, and it is not exactly clear where all this additional energy is going to come from. Equally as puzzling is the surprising fact that most of the energy we produce is lost to the atmosphere as waste heat.
So far, there have been very few compelling solutions for capturing this waste heat and turning it back into useable energy.
The annual PV Taiwan exhibition was held in Taipei October 26-28 with a three day exhibition and a two day forum. Backed by the Taiwan government and organized by SEMI, the PV Taiwan Forum featured speakers and materials discussing polysilicon, thin film, HCPV, OPV and next-generation PV technologies. Twenty industrial leaders, including heads of businesses from Gintech, Manz, Motech, Solarbuzz and SpectroLab, spoke at the forum to share their latest developments, market insights and overall trends.
There are many prestigious prizes which institutions and academics award to honor people for their exceptional efforts or accomplishments that benefit science, academia or even mankind. And many of them are not well known yet.
A curious thing happened in the solar market in 2010. Relatively expensive modules from well-established manufacturers sold well, while less expensive modules from startup firms did not sell as well. Why did developers pay more? Modules from the established firms had demonstrated excellent, predictable energy production over many years. In contrast, startups had not built this data set for their modules. Established firms have the financial strength to replace the modules if they failed. Startups had not yet established this strength.
Recent news from Spectrolab Inc., asserts that a triple junction solar cell has achieved the world record in efficiency, converting 41.6% of sunlight into electricity. While tremendously impressive and promising, this technology is targeted for implementation in space. Our focus at Applied is on achieving breakthrough efficiencies for rooftop and utility photovoltaics applications. We must achieve this with efficient and low cost manufacturing technologies capable of converting the most electrons for your solar buck.