Using Blu-Ray Discs to Boost Solar Cell Performance

01/02/2015 |

Data storage pattern for media improves light absorption

Solar Panel

Blu-ray discs are a great medium for storing high-definition video, but unwanted discs could get a second life thanks to research from Northwestern University showing that the discs can be used to improve light absorption in solar cells. The discs’ semi-random pattern of islands and pits used to store video gives solar cells a desirable surface texture that can increase absorption over the broad spectrum of sunlight.

Repurposing Blu-Ray Movie Discs as Quasi-Random Nanoimprinting Templates for Photon Management, published in Nature Communications, explains how the nearly random sequence of zeros and ones on the discs provides a feature-size range between 150-525 nanometers, which can improve output throughout the solar spectrum. The researchers also tried random patterns, but found the Blu-ray patterns to be optimal, providing 21.8% overall broadband enhancement.

“In addition to improving polymer solar cells, our simulation suggests the Blu-ray patterns could be broadly applied for light trapping in other kinds of solar cells,” says Cheng Sun, one of the researchers on the project.

Looking for more solar options to benefit your facility’s bottom line? Take a look at how Solar Area Lighting could benefit your operations. 

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Connectrac® wireways are the new standard for bringing power & communications cable management to all interior applications. Free yourself from core drilling!

Surpass State Energy Requirements with Dual-Cooling Data Center CRAC Technology

See how professionals like you are taking advantage of the highest performing precision cooling system for their computer rooms and data centers, and why Data Aire is fast-becoming the number one choice for facility managers and building owners looking to decrease their energy consumption. 

Data Aire understands how digital technology and data gravity is rapidly impacting and transforming businesses. That’s why they developed ultra-efficient cooling technology to support the most modern (and not-so-modern) data centers.  Learn how One Wilshire in Los Angeles, one of the most advanced carrier hotels today, is surpassing California's strict energy efficiency requirements with Data Aire’s purpose-built system, which provide full-economization for 260 days – almost 72% of the year. That’s a measurable savings! Furthermore, the projected PUE on an annual basis for a full load is at or below 1.2.


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