Dr Henry Snaith, founder of Oxford Photovoltaics, is working on commercialising his thin film, dye-sensitised photovoltaics.

Semi-transparent solar glazing panels developed by Oxford researchers

UK researchers have developed semi-transparent solar glazing panels to enable windows in the home to generate power.

Solar cell glazing replaces window glass with a semi-transparent photovoltaic panel.  One company in the UK who is working on the technology, is Oxford Photovoltaics. The company have developed thin-film, dye-sensitised solar cells that can be printed onto glass and other surfaces.

The glazing panels are semi-transparent, and made in a variety of colours and tints. Oxford Photovoltaics chief executive Kevin Arthur says the manufacturing cost of the product is half that of today’s lowest-cost thin-film technology.

“We’re using the simplest screen printing processes to make a product from readily available, low-cost ‘ingredients’, that can be scaled up quickly on a substrate [glass] that people prefer to use,” Arthur says.

“Adding the photovoltaic layer to a window would represent a fairly trivial additional cost and in return you would get electrical energy and lower the building’s carbon footprint.”

Further reading:

See E&T’s feature Crazy Glazing? in the latest issue of E&T.

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