Research team develops thermally stable, highly efficient solar cell

The Yomiuri Shimbun

An ultrathin solar cell that maintains its efficiency after it is ironed

The Yomiuri ShimbunA team led by researchers from RIKEN and Toray Industries Inc. has developed an ultrathin solar cell that remains functional even when pressed by an iron heated to over 100 C.

The team announced the new technology on Monday and said it hopes the solar cell will be put to commercial use as a power source for wearable electronic devices and other items sometime in the first half of the 2020s.

The 0.003-millimeter-thick film-type solar cell is made of organic compounds instead of silicon.

It uses highly heat-resistant semiconducting polymer developed by Toray. The team confirmed that the cell maintains its efficiency after being pressed between an iron and a piece of cloth.

The team has also previously developed washable photovoltaics with an elastomer-coated substrate.

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