Researchers from Michigan State University designed a transparent luminescent solar concentrator that can be used on buildings, cell phones, and other devices with a clear surface that harvests energy.
Richard Lunt at MSU’s College of Engineering led the development of this solar harvesting system that uses small organic molecules to absorb specific nonvisible wavelengths of sunlight.
“We can tune these materials to pick up just the ultraviolet and the near infrared wavelengths that then ‘glow’ at another wavelength in the infrared,” Lunt explained in a statement. “Because the materials do not absorb or emit light in the visible spectrum, they look exceptionally transparent to the human eye.”
The project is in development, but has high hopes, aiming to reach higher efficiencies while staying transparent to the eye.