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Stanford engineers invent a solar panel that generates electricity at night

Grant Currin writes in Interesting Engineering about a solar panel that can generate electricity at night.

The C3 Take
  • On clear nights photons leave solar panels which makes the surface of the panel slightly cooler than the air surrounding it.
  • Stanford engineers are trying to capitalize on this by retrofitting panels with a thermoelectric generator that would capture and convert the heat from the warmer air into electricity.
  • While panel efficiency remains to be seen, this innovation could pave the way for greater clean energy use.

“That temperature differential is what Assawaworrarit and his colleagues are taking advantage of. A device called a thermoelectric generator can capture some of the heat flowing from the warmer air to the cooler solar panel and convert it into electricity.”

Read the full article here.

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of C3.

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