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Coming Soon: “Anti-Solar” Panels that Create Energy at Night


ACS Photonics journal published an article from UC Davis stating that a specially designed photovoltaic cell could generate up to 50 watts of power per square meter under ideal conditions at night, about a quarter of what a conventional solar panel can generate in daytime. The current prototypes are generating small amounts of power, but researchers hope to improve the output and efficiency of the devices. The devices work just like solar cells, but in reverse. By pointing hot panels towards cold space above the earth, the heat will radiate toward it as infrared light, generating small amounts of power.


Professor Jeremy Munday, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UC Davis:

“A regular solar cell generates power by absorbing sunlight, which causes a voltage to appear across the device and for current to flow. In these new devices, light is instead emitted and the current and voltage go in the opposite direction, but you still generate power,” … “You have to use different materials, but the physics is the same.” 


To see the source article from UC Davis, click here.