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A new 'reverse solar panel' generates electricity from the shadows

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Scientists say they've created a device that allows electricity to be generated from the shadows thanks to different illumination angles. The shadow-effect energy generator (SEG), developed in Singapore, makes use of the contrast in illumination between lit and shadowed areas to generate electricity. The low-cost flexible device, which powered a watch in experiments, even gives an advantage over commercially available solar cells by operating in dark areas. A wearable SEG could make use of ambient light to potentially improve the versatility of devices such as smartphones and smartwatches. The device also has the added bonus as a self-powered sensor for monitoring moving objects by tracking the movement of shadows.


A solar panel that is 'British weather-proof' has been invented by scientists

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Scientists claim to have developed solar power technology that can produce around 20 per cent more energy in cloudy weather, compared to conventional solar cells. Researchers say their co-called'British weather proof' technology is cheaper, more energy efficient and more flexible than traditional solar panels. It is also able to convert solar energy to electricity in low light conditions, when conventional technology is ineffective. Scientists claim to have developed solar power technology that can produce around 20 per cent more energy in cloudy weather, compared to conventional solar cells. Researchers say their co-called'British weather proof' technology is cheaper and more energy efficient Australian researchers who created the technology believe their work represents a'significant step' towards making the technology commercially viable.


Breakthrough turns windows into solar panels and stores Sun's energy for nearly TWO DECADES

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Scientists say a breakthrough in solar energy could turn the average window into a source of heat and store energy captured by the sun's rays for decades. The method was developed by scientists from Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden and employs a specially engineered chemical and new type of storage apparatus that they say could render today's lithium ion batteries defunct. According to them, their system starts with a special molecule containing carbon, nitrogen and hydrogen that is tailored to trap the sun's rays upon contact - a new form of chemically-driven solar power that promises to lower environmental footprint. The scientists new solar captures system (pictured in a diagram above) uses novel new methods of storage and chemical engineering to capture the sun's rays and heat homes That molecule can be used to make a type of laminate that they envision being applied to windows, cars, or even clothing. Once the energy is captured, it can be released in the form of heat by introducing to a catalyst, they say.


Majority of energy used in the US in 2019 came from renewable sources like wind and solar

Daily Mail - Science & tech

The majority of energy consumed in the US during 2019 came from renewable sources like wind turbines, hydropower plants, and solar panels, displacing coal as the country's main energy source. According to a report from the US Energy Information Administration, 2019 was the first year since before 1885 when coal was not the country's main energy source. The use of coal-derived energy in the US has declined by nearly half since peaking in 2008, and year-over-year usage declined 15% between 2018 and 2019, reaching its lowest point since 1964. For the first time since before 1885, coal was displaced as the country's main power source, overtaken by renewable energy sources like solar, wind, and hydroelectricity In total, renewable energy consumption accounted for 11.5 quadrillion British thermal units in 2019, while coal accounted for 11.3 quadrillion, the report found. The most commonly used renewable energy source came from wind turbines, which passed hydropower plants as the country's leading source of renewable energy.


The world's first all-solar power village comes online in Morocco

Daily Mail - Science & tech

This month, a small Moroccan village earned the distinction of becoming Africa's first fully solar powered village. The project cost just $188,000 to build and generates 8.32 kilowatts of electricity for the village's 20 homes. Surplus energy produced by the panels is stored in a battery system that holds up to five hours of electricity that can be used after the sun sets. As part of the project, every home in the village was given an electric refrigerator, a water heater, television, oven, and electrical outlet to charge phones or other electric devices. Previously, villagers had lived by candle light at night, and used wood from local trees for heating and cooking fuel.