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Concept: Waldpolenz Solar Park


The electrostatic alignment and directed assembly of semiconductor nanowires into macroscopic, centimeter-long yarns is demonstrated. Different morphologies can be produced, including longitudinally segmented/graded yarns or mixed composition fibers. Nanowire yarns display long range photoconductivities and open up exciting opportunities for potential use in future nanowire-based textiles or in solar photovoltaics.

Concepts: Energy, Nanowire, Solar cell, Photovoltaics, Solar energy, Photovoltaic module, Photovoltaic array, Waldpolenz Solar Park


Concentrating photovoltaics offer a way to lower the cost of solar power. However, the existing paradigm based on precise orientation of large-area concentrator modules towards the Sun limits their deployment to large, open land areas. Here, we explore an alternate approach using high-efficiency microcell photovoltaics embedded between a pair of plastic lenslet arrays to demonstrate quasi-static concentrating photovoltaic panels <1 cm thick that accomplish full-day tracking with >200x flux concentration ratio through small (<1 cm) lateral translation at fixed latitude tilt. Per unit of installed land area, cosine projection loss for fixed microtracking concentrating photovoltaic panels is ultimately offset by improved ground coverage relative to their conventional dual-axis counterparts, enabling a ~1.9x increase in daily energy output that may open up a new opportunity for compact, high-efficiency concentrating photovoltaics to be installed on rooftops and other limited-space urban environments.

Concepts: Sun, Solar cell, Photovoltaics, Solar energy, Photovoltaic module, Photovoltaic array, Waldpolenz Solar Park, SunPower


The exploitation of nanoparticles (NP), synthesized via laser ablation in liquids, in photovoltaic devices is reviewed. In particular, the impact of NPs' incorporation into various building blocks within the solar cell architecture on the photovoltaic performance and stability is presented and analysed for the current state of the art photovoltaic technologies.

Concepts: Solar cell, Photovoltaics, Solar energy, Photovoltaic module, IBM, Photovoltaic array, Solar tracker, Waldpolenz Solar Park


Ambitious climate change mitigation plans call for a significant increase in the use of renewables, which could, however, make the supply system more vulnerable to climate variability and changes. Here we evaluate climate change impacts on solar photovoltaic (PV) power in Europe using the recent EURO-CORDEX ensemble of high-resolution climate projections together with a PV power production model and assuming a well-developed European PV power fleet. Results indicate that the alteration of solar PV supply by the end of this century compared with the estimations made under current climate conditions should be in the range (-14%;+2%), with the largest decreases in Northern countries. Temporal stability of power generation does not appear as strongly affected in future climate scenarios either, even showing a slight positive trend in Southern countries. Therefore, despite small decreases in production expected in some parts of Europe, climate change is unlikely to threaten the European PV sector.

Concepts: Solar cell, Photovoltaics, Solar energy, Waldpolenz Solar Park


Solar power represents a vast resource which could, in principle, meet the world’s needs for clean power generation. Recent growth in the use of photovoltaic (PV) technology has demonstrated the potential of solar power to deliver on a large scale. Whilst the dominant PV technology is based on crystalline silicon, a wide variety of alternative PV materials and device concepts have been explored in an attempt to decrease the cost of the photovoltaic electricity. This article explores the potential for such emerging technologies to deliver cost reductions, scalability of manufacture, rapid carbon mitigation and new science in order to accelerate the uptake of solar power technologies.

Concepts: Solar cell, Photovoltaics, Solar energy, Photovoltaic module, Waldpolenz Solar Park