Human hair can help create better solar panels, study finds
A carbon dot material can be obtained from human hair and used to improve the performance of solar panels. Researchers at the Queensland University of Technology in Australia (QUT) recently published a study showing how the material can form a layer around perovskite crystals that make up perovskite solar panels.
The hair waste used in the study was obtained from a barber shop in Brisbane.
Perovskite solar cells are a relatively new technology that has the potential to provide inexpensive solar power. They are made with an easy-to-make connection and are flexible so they can be placed in a variety of scenarios. They are also very light. However, the technology is new and needs to get cheaper and more stable before it becomes widespread.
Carbon nanodots are tiny particles of carbon that can be made by breaking down hair and burning it at high temperatures. The researchers found that when adding carbon dots to make perovskite crystals, the dots formed a protective layer around the crystals.
“It protects the perovskite material from moisture or other environmental factors that can damage the material,” said Professor Hongxia Wang, who led the study. The cells covered with carbon dots were found to have higher conversion efficiency and greater stability than perovskite cells without carbon dots.
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