IBM came out with this super discovery. They focus the sun over 2300x onto a silicon photovoltaic panel and they were able to pull 70 watts of it !!! It’s amazing. I mean, this could really change the bussiness.
The trick lies in IBM’s ability to cool the tiny solar cell. Concentrating the equivalent of 2000 suns on such a small area generates enough heat to melt stainless steel, something the researchers experienced first hand in their experiments. But by borrowing innovations from its own R&D in cooling computer chips, the team was able to cool the solar cell from greater than 1600 degrees Celsius to just 85 degrees Celsius.
Specifically, the IBM team used a very thin layer of a liquid metal made of a gallium and indium compound that they applied between the chip and a cooling block. Such layers, called thermal interface layers, transfer the heat from the chip to the cooling block so that the chip temperature can be kept low.
In the computer industry when you need to cool the processor (CPU), we are using a arcticsilver – a polysynthetic Silver thermal component. Because the CPU’s are quite hot as well.
There is a company named SUNRGI. They are developing similar system. SUNRGI systems efficiently harness this principal to turn that powerful spot of concentrated sunlight directly into electricity, which can power anything that runs on electricity.
Via: Ecogeek and IBM