Originally Posted by Bit_reaper
That's 20% of perpendicular light. The total amount of energy received at ground level from the sun at the zenith is 1004 watts per square meter. New designs do not only aim to widen the spectrum of captured light but also to make it possible to capture more omnidirectional rays. Basically having a lens that concentrates more surrounding light on to the cell.
Companies are also looking into integrating a second layer that would convert heat into electricity further increasing the W/m^2.
Right, but you cannot exceed that 1KW no matter what you try to do, at least not directly from the light itself (the residual heat thing, is actually more of an issue because of wasted energy not already captured by the cell, thus it becomes heat -> ie. wasted energy). The only reason they get the claim of 15x is because they are focusing the light, like a magnifying glass. So if you are measuring the light at the focal point, yeah, it might be that it is 15x the light energy, but if you look at the unaltered capture point it would still be the original 1KW per square foot.
Not sure how this helps anything, unless, it helps overcome the 50% efficiency barrier. Since they are capturing the light in a different manner, maybe they can achieve a theoretical 100% efficiency? If so, then that would be amazing. Going from 130W per square foot to something more like 900W per square foot would be an enormous improvement.
The only issue, is that is still does not detract from the "reliable" aspect of energy and the total failure on light to be reliable. Reliability of solar is already at a 3 to 1 ratio, and you still need backup power on top of that for night time. I am not saying a total no to solar, but we could never hope to make it even remotely close to the market share that say, coal is today... Just from that issue alone. It has a place, and a use, but replacing the world's power source is not it.
Originally Posted by xxpenguinxx
You use the AC when it's 31C? Just open a window.
Well, I guess it's ok if it's for a phase change setup:D
I might not, because that's just a little higher than optimal for me (although indoor temp might be a few degrees higher thus warrenting minor cooling (my house has terrible insulation).
BUT! there are many people out there that prefer their houses to be 15C to 20C. So I can see them not enjoying even opening a window to cool down.