Seeing solar energy progress is a good thing, but it still has one problem: at this point, it’s still inefficient when compared with other sources of energy. And now Japan and Europe have announced [PDF] that they will work together to develop the world’s most efficient photovoltaic cell over the next four years.
The aim is to reach the world’s highest photoelectric conversion efficiency of at least 45%. Using it in practical applications, however, will not be possible until 2025, Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization says. Commercializing the cell will take another 5 years.
The project is expected to cost $15.5 million, with the Japanese side shouldering $8.1 of that sum. Participants from Japan include big names such as Toyota, Sharp, and the University of Tokyo. From Europe, organizations from five different countries (Germany, the UK, Italy, Spain, and France) will be contributing.