In a not too far away future, graphene will allow to coat the outer walls of buildings with a “photovoltaic” paint suited for high-efficiency sun-ray absorption and transformation into energy to satisfy home requirements.
Researchers at the Manchester University, in co-operation with peers at the National University of Singapore, produced an innovative multi-layer material, a sort of wafer, alternating ultra-thin sheets of graphene – transparent and conductive – with equally thin sheets of highly photosensitive materials.
“We went beyond simple graphene, and combined it with other one-atom thick materials,” says professor Kostya Novoselov, Nobel Laureate for Physics in 2010 for his studies on graphene. “We overlapped several layers to obtain a new type of material offering a unique set of properties. Like in a book, each page contains important information, but the whole is much more valuable.”
By doing so, the research team created a super-efficient and supple photovoltaic “device” (therefore easier to use), which could be used to coat the walls of buildings, as well as integrated into mobile devices, including computers and mobile phones.
The study was published in Science. Click here to read the abstract.
The Editorial Staff
Published on Tuesday, May 7, 2013