Researchers in the UK have been awarded funding totalling £6 million to advance next-generation solar technologies into new applications that current technologies are not suitable for.
These organic and perovskite solar cells have the advantages of being flexible, lightweight, cheaper to produce and can be printed onto products during manufacturing processes, making them suitable for more applications than traditional solar cells.
They will be critical to advances, including zero carbon buildings and vehicles, which could use their roofs, walls and windows to generate power, as well as the Internet of Things (IoT) for which sensors and computing devices are embedded into everyday objects.
The team at Swansea University, Imperial College London and the University of Oxford aim to develop low carbon, low cost manufacturing methods that will enable the solar technologies to be produced at scale and develop prototypes to show how they can provide solar power in new applications.
Science Minister Amanda Solloway said: “This funding will allow our brilliant researchers from some of our leading universities to make the next generation of solar technologies a reality.
“These ground-breaking technologies have the potential to power up zero emissions vehicles, bolster our telecommunications network and provide clean energy for many of the devices we rely on every day. All of this will be essential to building a greener future and achieving net zero by 2050.”
The funding has been awarded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).