What to Consider when Buying Dye Sensitized Solar Cells What to Consider when Buying Dye Sensitized Solar Cells

Integrating a solar power system into your home's electrical system is and increasingly popular option for many homeowners, and dye sensitized solar cells offer one more option to the list. Dye sensitized solar cells are a different type of solar cell, that are much slimmer and flexible than traditional solar panels. Dye sensitized solar cells are created chemically, by the introduction of an additional electron to the photoelectrons. There are a number of considerations to keep in mind when considering any type of solar power options, but dye sensitized solar cells can be a good option for a number of reasons.

Cost

Dye sensitized solar cells cost considerably less than traditional solar panels. The savings with this type of solar panel is significant. They are relatively inexpensive to manufacture, and the installation is also much less intensive and requires less resources to install. While the output of dye sensitized solar cells can not compare to traditional solar panels, the cost to performance ratio rivals the output of traditional fossil fuels. The cost savings of utilizing dye sensitized solar cells as opposed to traditional grid type power sources could be significant. Due to technological limitations of the materials used to create dye sensitized solar cells though, unfortunately at the moment, dye sensitized solar cells are not currently able to be used in outdoor applications.

Advancements

Dye sensitized solar cells were invented in 1991, and have steadily increased in their effectiveness and technology since then. It is a technology that continues to advance and be developed upon. There is much research that has gone on since they were first introduced, and continues today. Just within the last year, the chemical composition of the materials in the cell have been enhanced to be more productive and more efficient in addition to enhancements on the materials used to make dye sensitized solar cells so that they are less expensive to produce and use materials that are much more readily available (one of these materials is platinum, which as most know, is a rare, precious, and expensive metal).

Disadvantages

Some of the disadvantages of dye sensitized solar cells is that they are relatively fragile when it comes to temperature fluctuations. Extremely low temperatures will freeze the material in which the cells reside, and can damage the chemical composition. Too, low temperatures that can freeze the electrolyte solution will effectively freeze the production of energy as well. For use in residential applications, this could be a huge barrier to being the sole supply of power used to heat a home. Conversely, extremely high temperatures cause the material to expand and break the sealant of the container that the solution resides, causing leakage. Considering that the solution contains volatile organic solvents, leakage effectively prevents dye sensitized solar cells from being an option for the majority of outdoor applications. Currently, researchers are looking for a way to put the materials in a sold form to prevent this problem.

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