Ali Javey

Better Solar Power for the Masses?

In solar cell technology, thin films are the Holy Grail. Standard (crystalline silicon) solar cells are heavy, rigid and bulky; they’re good for bolting to the roof of your house or using as components in vast arrays covering square miles of the Mojave, discomfiting endangered desert tortoises. But that’s about it. When it comes to using them for powering small personal devices – say smart phones or scooters – they’re pretty nigh worthless.

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