If there’s something solar energy as a technology needs, then it’s better and cheaper solar cells. And now Sharp has apparently made a step forward regarding the first factor: the company says it has developed a solar cell that has the world’s highest efficiency of 42.1%, breaking the record of Spectrolab of the US.
The American company’s triple-junction solar cells convert “just” 41.6% of sunlight into electricity. Sharp’s models have been developed together with Japan’s top college, the University of Tokyo. According to Sharp, the next step is to produce solar cells with 45% efficiency by 2014 and 50% efficiency by 2025.
The company also said that at 45% efficiency, the cost of generating solar power is about the same as the cost for power coming from thermal and nuclear power plants. It now plans to commercialize its new solar cells as quickly as possible.
Via Mainichi [JP]