Another small step ahead in solar energy: Mitsubishi Chemical has developed printable solar cells with a conversion rate of 9.2% and now plans to commercialize the cells as early as next year, according to Japanese business daily The Nikkei.
The cells are reportedly 90% lighter than the products currently out there and just “several hundred nanometers” thick. Because they are mainly based on carbon, Mitsubishi expects their cells to eventually cost 90% less than their silicon-based counterparts.
Developed in collaboration with the University of Tokyo, the cells can be attached to a variety of objects, but Mitsubishi is already cooperating with Japanese car makers in order to explore ways to use them for electric cars and hybrids.
By 2015, the company wants to see the 9.2% conversion rate of their cells to grow to 15%.