University of Wisconsin-Madison Crest
Wisconsin Energy Institute

Innovative solar cell structure stores and supplies energy simultaneously

By: 

Mark Riechers

June 06, 2013

Solar panels on the roof of a Madison home. A UW-Madison engineer has proposed a new design for solar panels that can simultaneously generate and store energy.  Photo: Jeff Miller

The potential energy available via solar power might seem limitless on a sunny summer day, but all that energy has to be stored for it to be truly useful. If you see a solar panel on a rooftop, in a large-scale array, or even on a parking meter, a bulky battery or supercapacitor is hidden just out of sight, receiving energy from the panel through power lines.

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