Solar Paint Technology May Revolutionize the Renewable Energy Industry
Lowering your carbon footprint and reducing greenhouse gasses may become as simple as painting your home or office, thanks to breakthrough research from the University of Notre Dame. The researchers, led by Professor Prashant Kamat, have created a new solar paint dubbed Sun-believable, which is laced with power producing nanoparticles capable of producing electricity. With the ability to generate renewable energy from this new, less invasive method, bulky solar panels as we know them today may soon become relics destined for the museum.
The sun is one of the most powerful forces humanity has ever encountered and we certainly would not exist without it. Throughout documented history our sun has been worshiped as a god or goddess by at least 19 different religions, stretching from one end of the planet to the other. Only recently, during the industrial revolution, did we begin to understand that harnessing this raw power is not only plausible but critical to creating a sustainable earth.
Professor Kamat’s team of researchers set out to revolutionize the field of solar energy production by creating a cheap and effective way to harness the sun’s free and plentiful energy. The team developed a solar paint by coating semi-conductive nanoparticles of titanium dioxide with either cadmium sulfide or cadmium selenide and mixing with a water and alcohol solution to create a paste. When this paste is applied to a transparent conductive material it can create electricity when exposed to sunlight.
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Dab of Paint image via University of Notre Dame.